Best/Worst Case Scenarios for Denver Broncos 2021 Free Agents
By Noah Smith
Denver Broncos 2021 free agent: Will Parks, Defensive back
Will Parks was drafted in the 6th round of the 2016 NFL Draft, and quickly became more than a meaningless roster spot. Parks solidified his role as a Special Teams ace and gave the Broncos a true “Swiss Army knife” on defense to match up with multiple different positions.
The Denver Broncos chose to let Will Parks walk in Free Agency, but was released by the Philadelphia Eagles during the 2020 season. Parks rejoined the Broncos in the final weeks of the season and continued his strong play from before. Now Parks, a free agent again, may have an opportunity to stick in Denver long-term.
Best Case Scenario: The Broncos retain Will Parks on a mid-level contract for the foreseeable future, allowing Parks to grow in the Broncos’ system, and be the potential replacement for Kareem Jackson. Parks will figure to be part of the Broncos’ plans moving forward after signing an extension.
Worst Case Scenario: The Broncos, again, let Parks walk in Free Agency. Parks signs with another team on an affordable contract and leaves the Broncos’ secondary depth thin.
My Prediction: Parks and the Broncos come to an agreement on a three year deal with an average salary of $6.5 million. Parks figures to be the heir apparent to Kareem Jackson in the secondary.
Tim Patrick, Wide receiver
An Undrafted Free Agent out of Utah, Patrick also found his way onto the Denver Broncos’ roster through a Reserve/Future’s contract. Patrick suffered an injury early in the 2019 season, but came back and finished strong to close out the season.
Patrick entered the 2020 season as the number two receiver behind Courtland Sutton but quickly established himself as the go-to guy after Sutton suffered a season-ending knee injury. Patrick showed his value as a starting-caliber receiver in the NFL, and will certainly be coveted by NFL teams looking for weapons this offseason.
Best Case Scenario: The Broncos place a 2nd-round tender on Tim Patrick, meaning he will net the Broncos a 2nd-round pick if he signs elsewhere in free agency. Assuming that Patrick returns to the Broncos, Lock regains his two big-bodied receivers in Sutton and Tim Patrick, while also allowing Jerry Jeudy and K.J. Hamler to develop.
Worst Case Scenario: The Broncos elect not to tag Patrick, meaning he can negotiate with other teams with no compensation returning to the Broncos. Should the Broncos choose not to match another team’s offer on Patrick, the Broncos lose Patrick with no compensation.
My Prediction: The Broncos tag Tim Patrick, but a receiver-needy team pays outside of the Broncos’ price range for Patrick. The Broncos do receive a 2nd round pick in compensation for Patrick’s departure.