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HOUSTON, TEXAS - JANUARY 04: Quarterback Deshaun Watson #4 of the Houston Texans reacts to a non call during the NFL Wild Card playoff game against the Buffalo Bills at NRG Stadium on January 04, 2020 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
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Schlereth: Watson alone won’t make Broncos contenders

(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Even if Denver manages to land Deshaun Watson this offseason, Mark Schlereth cautions Broncos Country to “temper” expectations, as “it’s going to take a while” before the club is a contender.

The “Schlereth & Evans” co-host said on Tuesday that despite Watson being one of the “great young players” in the NFL, the Broncos are not a playoff team with what would surround the Pro Bowl quarterback on the roster.

“There is a point where I would look at a deal and say, ‘Can we truly afford to go down that road?’” Schlereth said. “What I’m telling you is if you take Deshaun Watson, as the roster is currently constructed, this is not a playoff team.”

The comments come a day after a Pro Football Focus mock draft had the Broncos acquiring Watson from the Houston Texans in exchange for the No. 9 pick in this year’s NFL Draft. Denver would also give up a first-round pick in 2022 and 2023, along with a second-round pick this year and next.

PFF’s Sam Monson also opined on Monday that Watson would “make several teams into legitimate contenders,” including Denver, adding the star quarterback “would immediately make them a threat to the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC West …”

“What I’m telling you is you give away everything for Deshaun Watson, it doesn’t put you in the playoffs, regardless of what Pro Football Focus says,” Schlereth said.

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