The Denver Broncos made 11 roster moves on Monday to get to 78 players on the roster, and still have some tinkering to be done in order to get down to the league mandated 75 by the time Tuesday’s 2 PM deadline hits. If Monday is any indication, the Broncos won’t waste any time this morning and make those changes to the roster before practice.
John Elway and Gary Kubiak started making some pretty big moves on Monday with the trade of veteran tackle Chris Clark and the release of 9 other players, along with the placement of rookie TE Jeff Heuerman on injured reserve. What moves could be coming next?
In all likelihood, there will be nothing surprising, including some potential trades that could be in the works. Not only do the Broncos have exceptional depth (especially at the ILB, CB, and RB positions) but they have some areas where they could use a jolt or two, specifically along the defensive line in Derek Wolfe’s stead or perhaps in the punt return department. Another area of underrated concern for this team could be at the tight end position, where 9News Broncos beat reporter Mike Klis feels like the Broncos could add a player yet.
Klis also noted in his article (a 53-man roster projection not including Montee Ball) that the Broncos need a tackle that can suit up and play both the right and left side on game days. If healthy, it would seem that Jake Long is the best option there. What else might the Broncos look to do on Tuesday as they move toward finalizing the roster?
The Philadelphia Eagles have an embarrassment of riches at the RB position, which includes a heck of a punt returner in Kenjon Barner. Barner has played so well this preseason that I don’t even know if the Broncos could take him off their hands, but perhaps a swing for Tony Carter would entice Chip Kelly enough to the point that the Broncos could get a deal done. That would be a relatively small trade as far as preseason trades go, but it could possibly help both teams, giving the Eagles a core special teams player and backup corner while giving the Broncos the punt returner they desperately need.
If the Broncos try to trade for a tight end, there are certainly plenty around the league that would tickle Gary Kubiak’s fancy, though I’m not sure exactly which one(s) it would be. He obviously has experience working with some of the players left in Baltimore but Crockett Gilmore is expected to play a big role while Dennis Pitta is left on the PUP list.
In Houston, he was part of drafting both Garrett Graham (projected starter) along with Ryan Griffin (who has played well against the Broncos) and the Broncos have already done some business with the Texans. The two teams have also played against each other this preseason and practiced against each other last year, so they are familiar with one another. That could be another good trade match if the price is right.
Of course, if they are looking for a tight end, the Broncos could scour the waiver wire after the initial round of cuts, but their best option to get a player they really want is to swing a trade since they are so far down the waiver priority order.
If I had to bet on a trade based on the simplest connections being made, I would say the Broncos try and snag Ryan Griffin from the Houston Texans as someone still young that Gary Kubiak knows well. Just a thought.
If they try to trade for a defensive lineman, you could again go a number of directions but teams don’t usually just let those guys go. It could be harder to pry a defensive lineman — especially a 3-4 specialist — away from a team unless they are incredibly deep up front.
Keep your eyes peeled today, as there are sure to be some intriguing moves made across the league, including with John Elway and the Broncos.