With rumours circulating that Aqib Talib, Trevor Siemian and CJ Anderson are available via trade, plus more “sources” and “reports” that Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders could be released/traded as well, the new Denver Broncos coaches seem to be clearing cap space ready for another push in free agency.
If all that happens, along with right tackle, tight end, middle linebacker, Denver would have glaring needs across the board and every dollar counts. Information taken from spotrac.com shows that the Broncos currently have 24.5 million in cap space, with another 11.4 million in carryover. Estimates are Denver could have another 11 with the raise in the salary cap. So, roughly 47 million total. Not much room to sign Captain Kirk and fill all the holes.
I’d add Brandon Marshall and Todd Davis to that possible trade pool and have a clear restart within the roster. If Sanders, Marshall, Talib, Siemian and Anderson all get traded away, that will free up another 30 million. Of course, that would creat yet another vacuum needing filling.
If, and it’s a big if, all the above happens, we can clearly afford Kirk Cousins in free agency; however, with Jimmy Garopollo reaching a monster contract, it’s tough to imagine Cousins taking less, especially with the Jets saying 60M first year guaranteed.
While the Broncos would have some flexibility in either front loading the contract or back loading it, there’s not much you can do with a 35M+ annual salary with a 60M+ guarantee. That’s a huge hit no matter how you slice it.
This doesn’t even address that if you cut and/or trade all those above players, or even half of them, what kind of team is left? We have the quarterback, but did the team as a whole improve with so many vets gone?
Personally, I’d rather spend this money elsewhere. With the team in transition, players like Anderson and Sanders are just dead weight at this point. With Siemian on the trade block (and on his second shoulder surgery), and Brandon Marshall unhealthy and poor in coverage, there’s only Talib that I question being in trade discussions.
Derek Wolfe with his neck issues could be a problem. He’s a tremendous Bronco and the team struggled when he was injured at the end of the season, but chances are Denver will need another DE, maybe even another vet.
Below is the list of Denver Broncos who will be free agents starting March 12.
Add Shaq Barrett, Matt Paradis and Bennie Fowler as restricted free agents. From the list, I would keep Barrett, Paradis and Corey Nelson. If they don’t re-sign Cody Latimer, that leaves another WR hole.
After a conversation on Twitter recently, it’s clear that I’ve overlooked the quarterback position as an elite position, meaning the Broncos shouldn’t settle for average quarterback play, we need an elite player to follow the greats in Elway and Manning.
With so few elite quarterbacks in the league and an upcoming draft of unknown producers on a NFL scale, does the Bronco fan base have to accept a period of average play in an elite position? The simple answer is yes. For now.
With the Jags, Vikings and Rams all making the playoffs this year behind a good run game, great defense, and an average quarterback, I feel that maybe the NFL has returned to the 60’s and 70’s. Back in the day, the biggest line won the game with steady running backs getting 30+ carries every game and a QB throwing 20 or less passes. With this in mind, I hope we seriously pass over Kirk Cousins and his 35+ million estimated salary and reload on our defense and offense and allow Bill Musgrave and Mike Sullivan to work with Paxton Lynch and bring in a journeyman vet.
It all comes down to a simple question – With 47 million in cap space, a lot of holes and it appears a rebuild year, would you rather take a non-elite QB in Cousins and fix a couple of holes, or take an average QB e.g. Bridgewater and fill in most of the holes? I know what my answer is.
Enough with Captain Kirk, the Klingons need a wake up call