Denver Broncos: 4 most critical decisions facing new GM
Denver Broncos GM top 4 most critical decisions
3. What to do with Justin Simmons
What are the Broncos going to do with Justin Simmons?
This has been a topic of discussion for over a year at this point considering the franchise tag was an obvious option for Simmons last year as well.
Simmons is coming off of a Pro Bowl season in 2020 and has been one of the Denver Broncos’ only consistent turnover creators in the past few seasons. Considering the defense was horrendous at creating turnovers in 2020, you would think the team would do whatever it takes to keep this guy around.
Regardless of who the GM is, Simmons is the type of player you want to invest in both on and off the field. It would be shocking if the Broncos didn’t find a way to keep him.
With the salary cap potentially decreasing to $175 million in 2021, giving Simmons the franchise tag is an option but would be a tough pill to swallow. He was paid over $11 million in 2020 on the tag and would get over $13 million in 2021 if he were tagged again.
Would Simmons even play on the tag?
If nothing else, it would buy the Broncos until July to negotiate a long-term deal with the star safety, who is understandably seeking to be paid like the top player he is at his position.
What’s more, not taking care of Simmons over the long-term sets a horrendous precedent for players who literally do everything right. The Broncos have more consistently paid big-money free agents who come from other teams, but a new regime coming in would need to recognize how much it means for all future negotiations that players like Simmons are taken care of if possible.
Letting Simmons walk would create a massive hole in Denver’s defense.