If actions speak louder than words, then the Denver Broncos' decision not to trade Jerry Jeudy at the 2023 NFL trade deadline tells us quite a bit.
Adam Schefter of ESPN, appearing on 104.3 radio, said that the Broncos got calls on Jerry Jeudy and that there were "active discussions" about trades in general. Schefter said that the Broncos weren't going to give Jeudy up unless they got a "significant return" but then went on to say that they were offered a 3rd and 5th-round pick for Jeudy from some team.
Depending on who you ask, a 3rd and 5th for a player is a pretty significant return. Based on the other deals we saw go down at the NFL trade deadline, that would have been one of the most significant returns any team got for any player. But it wasn't significant enough for the Denver Broncos to part with the former first-round pick out of Alabama.
Well, presumably, Jeudy is still in the team's future plans at the position. That's a good package of picks to turn down unless you plan on keeping the player, because there's always a chance his value could go down as the 2023 season progresses. By the time we get to the offseason, perhaps we'll see more of the vision for Jerry Jeudy unfolding. We saw against the Kansas City Chiefs just how impactful Jeudy is capable of being, if only the Broncos would more consistently get him the football.
There continues to be a very interesting discrepancy between many in the fan base and what they think of Jeudy and what the Denver Broncos value him at. Many in the fan base are wondering why the Broncos didn't take an offer like that, and like I said earlier -- actions speak louder than words.
Sean Payton said something the Monday after the Broncos' victory against the Green Bay Packers on a Zoom conference call. He mentioned the team 'flipping a switch' and referenced last year's Detroit Lions team, a team that started 1-6 with the 32nd-ranked defense before finishing 9-8 and playing well in all phases. The Broncos started the season 1-5 and at the Week 9 bye, they are now 3-5 and feeling really good after a win against the Chiefs.
Maybe Payton is serious about flipping the switch. Maybe it's not just coach-speak. Maybe he really does feel like this team can be competitive this season. Nobody would have blamed the Broncos for taking those picks for Jerry Jeudy. That's a strong offer, and the Broncos need the picks.
But they also need the good player. And Jerry Jeudy is a good player. He also just might be a core player.
I think Sean Payton genuinely believes this team is a playoff team, as he stated before the season. I think his methods and culture are starting to take, and I think things have slowly -- but surely -- started to come together. With a record of 3-5, and a lot of people being highly critical of the state of the roster from the outside looking in, Sean Payton stuck with his guys and turned down a really good offer to do so.
Maybe the Broncos have truly flipped the proverbial switch.