2017 Free Agency Preview: Denver Broncos
[Editor’s note: This preview was originally published on Feb. 28, 2017, and updated on March 6 to reflect changes in the market do to franchise tags, re-signings, cuts, etc.]
What you need to know
The Broncos have more than enough cap room to make a “splash” signing, but the question on everyone’s mind is whether that comes at the quarterback position. It’s going to be difficult to get back to the playoffs if that position doesn’t improve from its 2016 form.
Salary cap room
- Right tackle
- Defensive tackle
- Tight end
Notable free agents
- DeMarcus Ware, Edge, 77.4 overall grade in 2016
- Todd Davis, LB, 76.0
- Sylvester Williams, DI, 43.5
Todd Davis, LB, 76.0 overall grade in 2016
Losing Davis would turn the second linebacker position into a revolving door for the Broncos after losing Danny Trevathan a season ago. It’s not a premium position, but they won’t have to pay a premium price to get Davis back.
Ricky Wagner, T, Baltimore Ravens, 84.5
The right tackle was a complete nightmare in 2016 after the Broncos tried to get a bargain signing Chiefs right tackle Donald Stephenson. It backfired, as Stephenson would finish as the lowest-graded tackle in the NFL. Wagner has multiple seasons of top-level play and would easily shore up the position in Denver.
Top 2017 free agency prospects
Marshall Newhouse, T, New York Giants, 69.4
The free agency market for tackles in incredibly thin. After Ricky Wagner and Andrew Whitworth, there may not be a capable starter in the bunch. Even someone like Newhouse who’s been a career backup-level player could be an upgrade though from the worst right tackle in the league.
Brandon Williams, DI, Baltimore Ravens, 75.9
The biggest difference between the 2015 and 2016 Broncos defenses was the interior of their defensive line. Stopping the run was an afterthought for Denver on their Super Bowl run, but last year teams routinely moved the ball with ease on the ground. Williams has been one of the top nose tackles in the league for the past three seasons.
Matt Barkley, QB, Chicago Bears, 73.8
Barkley is an interesting name to watch this offseason. Once heralded as a possible No. 1 overall pick, a shoulder injury dropped him significantly in the minds of many. That zip seemed to be back last season in Chicago though as he had a handful of impressive performances down the stretch.
Mike Glennon, QB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 69.0 on 15 snaps
The Broncos simply need to throw some more darts at the quarterback position and see what sticks. Glennon was once a somewhat promising rookie who got tossed aside with the allure of Jameis Winston as the No. 1 overall pick. He could easily be an improvement from Trevor Siemian.
|NFC East||Dallas Cowboys|
|NFC East||New York Giants|
|NFC East||Philadelphia Eagles|
|NFC East||Washington Redskins|
|AFC East||Buffalo Bills|
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|NFC West||San Francisco 49ers|
|NFC West||Seattle Seahawks|
|AFC West||Denver Broncos|
|AFC West||Kansas City Chiefs|
|AFC West||Los Angeles Chargers|
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|NFC North||Chicago Bears|
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|NFC South||Atlanta Falcons|
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|NFC South||New Orleans Saints|
|NFC South||Tampa Bay Buccaneers|
|AFC South||Houston Texans|
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|AFC South||Tennessee Titans|