Denver Broncos free agents who signed elsewhere in 2021
12. AJ Bouye, CB – Carolina Panthers
The Denver Broncos traded a fourth-round pick to the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2020 to get veteran AJ Bouye, someone that Vic Fangio had coveted for his defense while he was still with the Chicago Bears.
After finally getting Bouye in the fold, the veteran corner simply could not stay healthy for Vic Fangio and then ended up getting suspended before the season was over.
It was an ugly first year for Bouye in Denver, and he ended up signing a two-year, $7 million deal with only the first year guaranteed with the Carolina Panthers.
If Bouye can stay healthy, this is a tremendous value to the Panthers and their young defense.
13. Nick Vannett, TE – New Orleans Saints
Of all of the free agents that left Denver in the 2021 offseason, you’ll be a bit shocked to learn that nobody got more money guaranteed at signing than backup tight end Nick Vannett, who got $3.8 million guaranteed from the New Orleans Saints.
The three-year, $8 million deal Vannett signed in New Orleans came as a surprise in general to Denver Broncos fans who watched him be a virtual non-factor for the majority of his lone season with the Broncos.
14. Ja’Wuan James, OT – Baltimore Ravens
The Denver Broncos’ saga with Ja’Wuan James is well-documented at this point.
James was a big-money free agent in 2019 who signed for four years, $51 million before suffering a knee injury in the 2019 season opener, struggling to get back onto the field at all in his first season in Denver.
He then opted out of the 2020 season because of the pandemic and increased injury risk for players, which caused his entire contract with the Broncos to toll a full year.
After training at the team facility almost all offseason, the NFLPA advised players to relocate for their training despite the risk of injury off-site which could cause players to have to void guaranteed money in their salaries.
James decided to work out elsewhere, hurt his Achilles and was released by the Denver Broncos, voiding $10 million in guaranteed cash.
Denver Broncos: 53-man roster prediction at 2021 OTAs
The Denver Broncos will have some difficult decisions to make regarding the roster leading up to the 2021 season. Who makes the final 53?
The Baltimore Ravens traded Orlando Brown Jr. to the Kansas City Chiefs earlier in the offseason, so they saw an opportunity with James and got him on a two-year deal worth $4.575 million if he makes the team next year.