Denver Broncos: 5 free agents to sign before the 2021 NFL Draft

Denver Broncos DL Jurrell Casey. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports
Denver Broncos DL Jurrell Casey. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports /
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Aldon Smith, Denver Broncos
Denver Broncos 2021 offseason: Aldon Smith. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images) /

2. Aldon Smith, EDGE

The idea of Aldon Smith joining the Denver Broncos has already been entertained by the team.

In 2020, the Denver Broncos finished second in the bidding to sign the free agent pass rusher after five years away from the game. The Dallas Cowboys brought him in and reunited him with Jim Tomsula, a coach of his with the San Francisco 49ers.

Although John Elway and Matt Russell are no longer the Broncos’ 1-2 punch in the front office, Vic Fangio — Smith’s defensive coordinator in San Francisco — remains a key advocate for some of the players that get added to the roster.

Fangio was consulted about former 49er Mike Purcell, who turned into a second-contract player with the Denver Broncos playing in the familiar defensive scheme.

After losing Jeremiah Attaochu to the Chicago Bears, the Denver Broncos have an opening for a fourth pass rusher, and Smith makes a ton of sense.

He played well this past season for the Cowboys as a full-time starter, and reuniting him with Fangio seems like an excellent low-risk, high-reward proposition at this stage of free agency.

Pairing Aldon Smith and Von Miller would have at one point been considered an absolute dream as the two began terrorizing quarterbacks when they came into the league together in 2011.

Even into their early 30s, having Smith and Miller on the same roster would be fun to watch. The Broncos obviously also have Bradley Chubb and Malik Reed, but Smith would be a valuable hedge given the team’s injury issues off the edge in the last two seasons.