2024 NFL Draft: Broncos, Chiefs, Saints win Day 3 with these draft steals

These 3 players landed in ideal situations.
Oregon's Bo Nix and Troy Franklin
Oregon's Bo Nix and Troy Franklin / Chris Gardner/GettyImages

Day 3 of the 2024 NFL Draft started with top prospects still on the board.  Where did these prospects land and which teams benefitted from these players sliding in the draft?

As NFL draft history has proven, some of the top players in the NFL emerge from the middle-to-late rounds of the draft depending on whether they are drafted in the right situation. For these 3 players drafted on Day 3, the silver lining of falling a bit in the draft is that they are going to teams where they can flourish.

2024 NFL Draft Day 3 steals based on landing spots

Here are 3 NFL teams who jumped at the opportunity to draft players who feel to them in the 2024 NFL Draft.

Denver Broncos: Troy Franklin, WR – Oregon

Projected as an early Day 2 pick, Oregon’s Troy Franklin was selected on Day 3 by the Denver Broncos with the No. 102 overall pick in the 2024 NFL Draft.

A high-volume receiver catching the ball from Bo Nix, Franklin has first-round talent and if in the right situation has the skills to blossom as a Pro-Bowl caliber receiver in the NFL. In reuniting with Nix in Denver, Franklin becomes a familiar target for the new Broncos quarterback.  Can the two recreate their magic in the NFL?

In setting a single-season school record with 1,383 receiving yards and 14 receiving TDs, Franklin can score from anywhere on the field.  He not only can accelerate past defenders, but he also has a sneaky toughness to his game that allows him to escape tackles.  Although he is not projected as a WR1 in the NFL, in the right offense he can grow into a top receiver in the NFL over time.  Maybe he does that under Sean Payton.

Kansas City Chiefs: Jared Wiley, TE – TCU

In what hasn’t been viewed as a deep tight end class beyond Brock Bowers, TCU’s Jared Wiley is going to be a steal for the Kansas City Chiefs who drafted him with the No. 131 overall pick in the 2024 NFL Draft.

A favorite here at NFL Mocks, the 6-foot-6, 249-pound tight end received First-team All-Big 12 Conference honors during his final season at TCU with 47 receptions for 520 yards and 8 touchdowns.  While projected as a fourth-round selection, Wiley has the length and ability to make a similar impact as Sam LaPorta, especially catching the ball from Patrick Mahomes and playing in an innovative offense.

Overall, Wiley will have to work on his foot work and route running but might just surprise on the next level if he continues to work on his skills.  Learning behind Travis Kelce should help his progression.

New Orleans Saints: Spencer Rattler, QB – South Carolina

With the Top 6 quarterback prospects going in the first round, South Carolina’s Spencer Rattler was the top quarterback remaining on Day 2 but had to wait till Day 3 where the New Orleans Saints drafted him in the 5th round.

Should this selection by the Saints have Derek Carr looking over his shoulder?  With two years left on his current deal, the Saints are looking towards the future in selecting a QB who could come out of this draft as a steal, especially as a prospect sitting behind a veteran for a couple of seasons.

In setting a school record by completing 68.9 percent of his passes, Rattler is very accurate and a QB who stands tough in the pocket when facing pressure.  Though he was a higher ratted prospect during his days at Oklahoma, Rattler has the skillset to excel in the NFL and push Carr a bit the next couple of seasons in the NFL.

Although sliding in the draft was disappointing, this is an ideal situation for Rattler who won’t have the pressure to step in before he is ready.  He gets a chance to learn behind Carr, but at the same time will display a confidence that will have Carr motivated to keep his job.