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Broncos move up two spots to No. 12 in 2024 draft order after sweep by Raiders, 8-9 season mark


LAS VEGAS — Denver lost Sunday but moved up two spots in the draft order.

The Broncos are set to check in with the No. 12 overall pick in April after beginning the day at No. 14 prior to a 27-14 loss to Las Vegas.

They moved ahead of New Orleans and the Raiders. Las Vegas and Denver each finished 8-9 and with identical .488 strength of schedule. Given that improbable tie, the next decision point is the divisional tiebreaker. Thus, the Raiders’ sweep in the season series means Denver goes first.

The Broncos’ six picks currently are their first-round pick, their third-round pick (it’ll be higher than New Orleans’ pick, which gets traded to Seattle to complete last spring’s draft-day move-up for Riley Moss), a fourth-rounder, a pair of fifth-rounders and a sixth-rounder.

Chicago picks No. 1 because it owns Carolina’s first-rounder. Elsewhere in the AFC West, the Los Angeles Chargers are No. 5, Las Vegas is No. 13 and Kansas City’s spot will be decided depending on how its postseason run goes.

Raiders go 98. Sean Payton wanted to extend the first half.

Instead, the Raiders extended their lead.

Backed up first-and-10 from his own 2-yard line with 1 minute, 43 seconds left in the first half and leading 10-7, quarterback Aidan O’Connell sneaked for one yard.

Payton popped his last timeout of the half. He couldn’t stop the clock any further, but if the Raiders had run the ball twice they might have punted out of their end zone with about 20 seconds left. Maybe they’d throw it and leave more time.

Except Zamir White rumbled for 25 yards on the next play. Then 18 more for Las Vegas on two completions. Then 47 yards from O’Connell to Tre Tucker. Before you knew it, Davante Adams hauled in a three-yard touchdown with seven seconds left for a 17-7 lead.

Twelve plays, 98 yards, 1:36 on the clock.

“The same thing happened in New England,” Payton said. “When you have what appears to be – I mean, holy cow, I just think of that offensively. I know some would say, ‘Well your offense isn’t (great).’ But from a field-position standpoint, we want the half to extend. We want it to be longer.

“And, listen, there’s an expectation level of how we should be defensively and defending 99 yards.”

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