Here we are, one month and counting until the free agency period begins. With some of the Denver Broncos’ players also becoming free agents, one has to wonder where Denver’s eye is going to be. To re-sign or not to re-sign; that is the question.
There are a lot of high profile players out there that are going to be up for grabs. Some of these high profile players include, but are not limited to wide receivers such as Greg Jennings (GB) and Wes Welker (NE). Each of these players would be valuable assets to the Broncos offense, but they come with a hefty price tag.
Jennings is nearing the end of his four-year contract with the Green Bay Packers and would be a valuable asset for a strategic offense that runs the route, where Jennings is most successful. With Peyton Manning behind the helm, I think that Jennings’ talents could help the Broncos. Jennings had to fight for the spotlight with fellow player Randall Cobb who put up 954 yards and 8 touchdowns, and Jennings only ended up with 366 yards, but 4 touchdowns. Bottom line, there is a lot of potential for Jennings especially with a team that has a well-organized offense as Denver is making out to be.
Acquiring Wes Welker would definitely raise eyebrows. Welker put up 1,354 receiving yards with 6 touchdowns in 2012. Welker ended up playing under his $9.35 million franchise tag with the New England Patriots without any long term extension last year. As free agency comes up again and Welker approaches 32, he will not have as much leverage to force the Patriots to extend a contract offer to him. The only downside I see to acquiring Welker would be the cost of his contract, and the Broncos would be limited on cap room. Though I would love to see him in orange and blue for more than one reason, I do expect to see Welker to play for a different team this year.
Another talk of the town outside free agency and more likely of an acquisition for Denver would be a trade for Minnesota Vikings’ wide receiver, Percy Harvin. Harvin racked up 677 yards and 3 touchdown passes in 2012, but like Greg Jennings, the spotlight was mainly pointed toward another player. Of course you all know that I mean this year’s MVP, Adrian Peterson. Even so, Harvin would be a valuable asset, but he also comes with a tad bit of baggage in the attitude department. Sound familiar, Bronco fans? It does to me too. It reminds me of the Brandon Marshall and Josh McDaniels days. Attitudes aside, both Harvin and Marshall were and still are stellar players. Honestly, personality clashes happen, but that doesn’t mean that a player is a bad player, you just need to find the right fit and that has certainly been proven in Marshall’s case.
Giving credit where credit is due, Marshall has flourished with the Chicago Bears under former teammate and quarterback Jay Cutler. I think that Harvin working with respected and seasoned veterans like Peyton Manning could tame Harvin, especially with the potential of a Super Bowl run in 2014. Unlike the price tag on Welker and Jennings, the 24-year-old Harvin is still due to make $2.9 million under his current contract in 2013, and that is something the Broncos could afford to invest in to beef up their wide receiver slot, but who knows?
Brandon Stokley was Manning’s go-to man putting up 544 yards and 5 touchdowns, in addition to helping the Broncos third-down conversion where it needed it. Stokley certainly proved that he still has it at 36, but the Broncos only signed him to a one-year deal last year after the acquisition of Manning. Stokley, like Harvin, is a free agent, and I personally feel that the Broncos will not make a move in the wide receiver end without consulting Manning first. With that in mind, remember what John Fox and John Elway’s goals are. It’s ultimately about winning a Super Bowl, and they are going to make sure that they put the right weapons in front of Manning in order to do so.
Stay tuned, Broncos Country. It is only the beginning!