The Denver Broncos made somewhat of a surprising move on Wednesday afternoon, releasing veteran pass rusher and special teams player Jacob Martin, a player the team acquired in a trade at last year's trade deadline. The Broncos had made the blockbuster deal involving pass rusher Bradley Chubb going to the Miami Dolphins, and they subsequently "replaced" Chubb's spot on the roster by doing a pick swap with the Jets for Jacob Martin, a Colorado native and veteran reserve edge/special teams player.
Martin played in five games for the Denver Broncos, averaging about 20 defensive snaps per game and about 19 special teams snaps per game. He would miss the final four games of the season with a knee injury but he was impactful early upon his arrival, sacking Ryan Tannehill in the Broncos' loss to the Titans and nearly getting home for a few other sacks in the games he played after that.
The Broncos save a little over $3.8 million by releasing Martin, though he had $1 million in guaranteed money on the deal that carried over from the New York Jets. Interestingly enough, the Broncos have now saved over $5 million in the last couple of days with the release of Martin and the addition of veteran safety Kareem Jackson. A rather unprecedented situation led to the Broncos actually getting salary cap relief by doing another deal with Jackson, as reported by Mike Klis:
Those two moves seemingly give the Broncos roughly $5.17 million in total salary cap relief, and even if they were pushing close to the salary cap before, that opens up the options for this team to pursue additional veteran help on the pass rush market. And in my opinion, that's now a necessity.
Although Jake Martin wasn't expected to play a massive role in 2023, I think with Randy Gregory missing most of his first season in Denver due to injury and the rest of the EDGE group being a bunch of young guys, the Broncos would be wise to "raise the floor" of this particular room.
How can they do that? As fate would have it, there is actually quite a robust group of EDGE guys on the market right now, some who have history with the current Denver Broncos coaching staff and some who don't. Let's take a look through some of the top five options out there (in no particular order).