The Denver Broncos had several key players in trade rumors during the deadline. Their lack of firesale proves that 2023 will open the Super Bowl window. Scrolling through the Broncos’ social media world showed me many, many people who thought the team should have traded way more players than they did.
Perhaps they thought the team should blow it up, which I indeed read. That is ridiculous, and this trade deadline proved one big thing to me for the Broncos and their future:
The 2023 season will be the “official” opening of the team’s Super Bowl window. That year was likely supposed to be this year. The addition of Russell Wilson and talented defense put the Broncos in the conversation to make a deep playoff run.
However, virtually nothing has gone the right way for Denver in 2022. Nathaniel Hackett is not the answer as head coach, and George Paton needs to soon admit that he made a huge mistake here. Even though there were a ton of changes from the Broncos, they surely did not expect to be 3-5 at the bye week.
Honestly, they should have been 5-3, at worst. Two games make a world of a difference. At the trade deadline, the team sent Bradley Chubb to the Dolphins, and what they got back included a first-round pick in 2023, which originally belonged to the 49ers, and a fourth-round pick.
The team did not trade Jerry Jeudy, KJ Hamler, Dalton Risner, or Melvin Gordon. They didn’t trade Albert Okwuegbunam and simply did not have a “firesale” like some thought they should have.
To me, this means that George Paton is gearing up to hit the ground running in the 2023 offseason to officially open the Broncos’ Super Bowl window.
Trading a bunch of players at the deadline to accumulate draft picks would have indicated that the team would have been looking to retool a bit. Rookies usually take time to hit their stride, so if Denver would have acquired more draft picks, we should have expected them to need a couple more years before everything would have come together.
Since Bradley Chubb was the only move (which, was planned all along), this shows me that George Paton is going to fix the mess he made. I think he’ll end up bringing in a veteran, offensive-minded head coach to replace Hackett.
I also think he’ll dive deep in free agency, shoring up small holes on the defense and rebuilding the Broncos’ offensive line. I also think he’ll look to add more offensive weapons in both free agency and the draft as well, which now contains a first-round pick for the Broncos.