NFL Rumors: Broncos Would Have Drafted Micah Parsons If They Didn't Pick Patrick Surtain II

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JB Baruelo

Week 9 of the 2021 NFL season would be featuring the matchup between two of the top defensive rookies in the league - Dallas Cowboys linebacker Micah Parsons and Denver Broncos cornerback Patrick Surtain II. Since the season started, Parsons, who was selected No. 12 overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, and Surtain II, the No. 9 pick, continue to prove that they deserve to be lottery selections last summer.

With their explosive performance this season, it wouldn't be surprising if Parsons and Surtain II become frontrunners to win the Defensive Rookie of the Year award.

Broncos Explored Drafting Micah Parsons

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As of now, the Cowboys and the Broncos seem happy with their decision to select Parsons and Surtain II in the 2021 NFL Draft. However, it was recently revealed that they were also considering other options last offseason. Had the Carolina Panthers took Surtain II at No. 8, Broncos head coach Vic Fangio revealed that they would have drafted Parsons at No. 9.

“We really liked (Parsons),” Fangio said, as quoted by Ryan O'Halloran of The Denver Post. “If we didn’t take Pat, he was a guy that was right there for us.”

Cowboys Plan A Before Drafting Micah Parsons

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The Broncos weren't the only ones who explored other options in the 2021 NFL Draft. While Denver's No. 1 choice at No. 9 was Surtain II, Parsons wasn't really at the top of the Cowboys' draft board in the last offseason. Before they selected Parsons, the Cowboys were hoping that either Surtain II or Jaycee Horn would be available at No. 10.

However, after Horn and Surtain II were picked by the Panthers and the Broncos, respectively, the Cowboys traded the No. 10 pick to the Philadelphia Eagles for the No. 12 pick, which they used to draft Parsons, and a third-round pick.

Broncos GM George Paton Impressed By Patrick Surtain II

Surtain II still has plenty of things that he needs to work on his game but as of now, Broncos GM George Paton said that he's impressed with what he's seeing with their rookie cornerback.

"Pat -- I've been really impressed," Paton said, as quoted by Jeff Legwold of ESPN. "He's a pro. He keeps getting better every week. I think he's going to be one of the better corners in the league. I haven't wavered off that. ... For a rookie he doesn't get frazzled, that's what I like about him."

Micah Parsons A Perfect Fit With Cowboys

So far, Parsons has shown everyone in the league why the Cowboys shouldn't regret not being able to draft Surtain II or Horn in the 2021 NFL Draft. Parsons may not be their top target last summer, but Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy believes that they found a player who perfectly fits their system.

"An impact player," McCarthy said of Parsons. "He fits in great with our defensive philosophy and how we want to play defense."

Though he's not their No. 1 option, McCarthy revealed that the Cowboys ranked Parsons as the "top defensive player in the draft."