It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas!!!! Well fellow Broncoholics, Mr. Pat Bowlen has an open checkbook and The Duke of Denver, John Elway keeps buying him, and us, early Christmas presents. Late last night, Elway pulled the trigger on a deal that I really didn’t see coming; inking former New England Patriots cornerback, Aqib Talib. The deal is for a reported $57 million over 6 years; $26 million of which is guaranteed. Then as if the addition of Talib and new Broncos’ safety, T.J. Ward wasn’t enough, they fortified the defense even further moments ago with the addition of former Dallas Cowboys‘ sack-master, DeMarcus Ware. The 31-year old Ware agreed to a 3-year, $30 million deal with $20 million in guaranteed sawbucks.
A 7-year veteran out of Kansas, Talib was drafted by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers with the 20th overall pick in the 2008 draft. In the 28-year old Talib, the Broncos get one of the best lock-down corners in the game. In just 13 games last year in New England, he made 41 tackles, 4 interceptions, and had 9 passes defended. If that doesn’t seem like gaudy statistics, that’s because opposing quarterbacks just don’t throw in his direction much. The down side to Talib is that he has only played as many as 15 games twice in his career and those two years were his first two in the league. So it stands to reason that we need to be a little leery about his durability. However, if he is healthy, this is a coup for the Broncos.
From Auburn University, DeMarcus Ware was taken in the first round in the 2005 draft (#11 overall) by the Cowboys. Since he came into the league he has been one of the most feared pass rushers in the NFL. He has averaged 13 sacks per season, leading the league in 2008 with 24 and 2011 with 19.5. In his 9th season, at the age of 31, his sack total slipped to 6. One could surmise that age is catching up to him. Another could look at it and say that the 2013 Cowboys had one of the two or three worst defenses in the league and they had no bookend on the other side of Ware like that of Von Miller. In Denver, Ware doesn’t have to be “The Man” on defense. There’s a supporting case there that will certainly take one or two blockers off of him, giving him more opportunity to get to the quarterback.
It has been reported that Denver’s attention turned to Talib and Ware because former Broncos’ cornerback, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and former Minnesota Vikings‘ defensive end, Jared Allen priced themselves too high. In the past three years, no organization in the NFL has crushed free agency like John Elway and the Broncos. I don’t know if these acquisitions will result in a Super Bowl title, but one thing we as Broncos’ fans can be rest-assured, this front office does care about winning and will do what it takes to make that happen. In doing so, Elway is becoming the “Dirty Harry” of the NFL. I believe that The Duke said to DRC and Allen, “go ahead…make my day!” and Rodgers-Cromartie and Allen called his bluff. Buh-bye!!! Stay tuned for more movement at Dove Valley.