With the announcement of Darian Stewart being released by the Denver Broncos, the No Fly Zone is down to one member. We look back at this secondary group.
A lot can change in three years. For the Denver Broncos, that change has resulted in quite a bit of their Super Bowl winning team no longer on the roster. With the release of Darian Stewart on Wednesday, the Broncos only have three starters from their Super Bowl defense left.
It also marks the third member of the No Fly Zone to depart since 2017. T.J. Ward was released prior to the start of 2017 and Aqib Talib was traded last offseason. Bradley Roby could be a case as the fifth member, but it also appears he might be playing somewhere else in 2019.
It took about two offseason’s to formulate what Broncos Country calls the No Fly Zone. And my goodness, was it a glorious secondary unit. The cornerback and safeties that are Chris Harris Jr., Aqib Talib, Darian Stewart, and T.J. Ward forced any quarterback to dare throw it in the air.
Add Bradley Roby for nickle coverage, and you could count on the entire field being covered. But how impressive was the No Fly Zone when all five members were a part of the team?
In the 2015 season and 2016 playoffs, the team recorded 17 interceptions. Nine of those 17 came from members of the No Fly Zone. And during the 2016 season (post Super Bowl), the No Fly Zone accounted for 11 of the team’s 14 interceptions.
It seemed whenever the team needed a turnover, the No Fly Zone produced in the most critical situations.
Those are some pretty impressive numbers. It really does show how much of an impact the defense really had. But sadly, as times change, the NFL evolves. It is rare to see teams have a group of guys stay together for long.
While Chris Harris Jr. is still on the roster, Broncos Country can never forget what the No Fly Zone did for the franchise, especially during the Super Bowl 50 season. While the glorious secondary group is fading every season, we can never forget what they brought to the city of Denver.