By Romi Bean

With the 20th pick in the NFL Draft, the Denver Broncos select: Garett Bolles, Tackle, Utah

DENVER (CBS4) – It’s no surprise the Broncos grabbed a tackle in the first round – it was their biggest need and they weren’t able to fill it in free agency. John Elway’s draft philosophy has always been to draft the best player available and avoid taking a player to fill a need. This year it looks like he went with the latter, taking a tackle that was desperately needed.

gettyimages 674204390 A Closer Look At Broncos 1st Rounder Bolles: Troubled Upbringing, Massive Frame

Garett Bolles of Utah reacts with his son Kingston after being picked #20 overall by the Denver Broncos during the first round of the 2017 NFL Draft on April 27, 2017 in Philadelphia. (credit: Elsa/Getty Images)

What can Broncos fans expect from the 24 going on 25-year-old tackle? John Elway tweeted:

“Excited that Garett Bolles was available for us to take with our 1st round pick. He was the most athletic tackle in the draft and plays with toughness!”

john elway2 A Closer Look At Broncos 1st Rounder Bolles: Troubled Upbringing, Massive Frame

John Elway on Thursday (credit: CBS)

Bolles plays with a nasty edge and a football-first attitude due in large part to his troubled upbringing.

Bolles was kicked out of five schools as a teenager due to skipping class, drugs and immaturity. He was arrested for vandalism in 2010 and kicked out of his house by his father after high school. He worked as a garage repair technician for two years before going on an LDS Church Mission that turned his life around. That mission happened to be in Colorado.

Bolles started over — he played two seasons at Snow College before moving up to the PAC-12 as a Ute. In his first and only season at Utah, Bolles started 12 games for Utah, earning First Team All-Pac 12 honors.

NFL DRAFT: Round-By-Round Selections

Bolles can provide immediate improvement for the Broncos and will compete for the starting role against Ty Sambrailo and Donald Stephenson. His immense natural athleticism and ascending skill-set are just what Elway and his staff was looking for. And his massive frame leaves room for him add more bulk and muscle.

For Bolles, coming to Denver means far more than just football. After his life-changing LDS mission, Colorado is the place he calls home. He said it’s “where his heart is.”


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