Jan 30, 2014; New York, NY, USA; Denver Broncos linebacker Von Miller attends the Madden Bowl XX Red Carpet event at the USS Intrepid Mandatory. Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Broncos Pick Up Fifth Year Option for LB Von Miller

After taking the decision nearly to the deadline, the Denver Broncos made a wise choice by picking up the fifth-year option for 2011 first round pick and star linebacker Von Miller.

Miller, the team’s first pick under the new collective bargaining agreement, was set to be a free agent in 2015 if the team had chosen not to pick up his $9.754 million option, which they made official on Thursday.

This was a no-brainer decision for the Broncos, but Miller’s actions last summer as well as a torn ACL forced them to think about it longer than they should have had to.

Since coming into the league in 2011, it’s hard to argue that many players have proven to be more effective pass rushers and overall defensive playmakers than Miller, who has racked up 166 tackles, 35 sacks, and 11 forced fumbles since coming into the league.

Last summer, Miller was suspended six games by the NFL and appealed to have it reduced but was unsuccessful for failed/tampered drug tests.

Miller gained some weight during his time off, and came back a bit sluggish.

In the team’s second to last game of the season, Miller tore his ACL in a game against Houston, and is now working his way back to hopefully be ready by the time the Broncos kick off against the Indianapolis Colts to start the 2014 NFL season.

Those reasons, coupled with some missed court dates and other head scratching mistakes by Miller, forced the Broncos to think twice about picking up that option, but in the end, Miller’s on-field talent is worth it.

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Tags: Denver Broncos Roster Moves Von Miller

  • trinity

    I hope he doesn’t pull an aldon smith. He really needs to grow up.

    • SayreBedinger

      I agree! Von has never seemed like a bad guy, so his suspension last year came as a huge shock. He has always had a reputation as a hard worker, so doubly confusing. He’ll be alright I think.

  • anon76returns

    I’m a bit baffled by the negativity from Broncos fans surrounding Miller. He has certainly made off-field mistakes, but they pale in comparison to what other NFL players have done with much less tutt-tutting from fans. Comparing his transgressions to those of Aldon Smith is extremely unfair to Von.

    As for on-field production, I don’t get all of the complaints about his 2013 season or the extra weight. He didn’t get as many sacks as in 2012, that is true, but he had more QB hurries and forced more scrambles. In Houston JJ Watt had the same problem (less sacks, more hurries), and nobody has said his season was a disappointment (he should have been the Defensive MVP). Miller graded out as the top 4-3 OLB by both PFF and Bleacher Report, and on top of his individual stats his effect on the overall defense was remarkable. In the 6 games prior to Von’s return, Denver was giving up 8.5 yards per passing attempt, 14.1 yards per completion, and 338 yards passing per game, all worst in the league. In the remaining 10 games, we gave up 6.1 yards/attempt, 10.8 yards/completion, and 204 yards passing/game, all top 6 in the league. We also went from getting pressure on the QB at the 15th highest rate in the league, to the 3rd highest rate in the league.

    Frankly I just don’t understand how his on-field production last season can be questioned- on an individual level he was the best at his position, and his effect on the defense was to take them from the worst in the league to a top 5 unit.

    • Chad Jensen

      To the naked eye, Miller did look “off” a bit. Not quite as explosive with his first step. But he was just as impactful as he usually is. In just 552 snaps, he managed 5 sacks and 27 QB hurries. He wasn’t just the highest graded OLB, he was the highest graded LB, period. In both 4-3 and 3-4. Looking forward to watch Miller and Ware get after the QB. Can’t wait. (Bart Scott Voice)