After Denver Broncos legend John Elway stepped out of the front office and handed the team's personnel decisions over to someone else, the hiring of general manager George Paton was met with a lot of excitement.
The team had conducted a thorough search and landed on Paton, who came in starting with the 2021 season after spending six years in the front office of the Minnesota Vikings. But as the Broncos continue to spiral downward and sit at 1-3 on the 2023 season, Paton's ability to perform the job well is seriously in question.
He has made some poor decisions since being the man in charge and the list of good decisions is currently not very long. When the Broncos went under new ownership in the summer of 2022, it was a bit of a surprise that Paton wasn't already relieved of his duties after the team suffered through two poor seasons under his direction.
Paton was allowed to stay on in 2023 but the leash is clearly short and because of these four decisions, I predict that Paton will be relieved of his duties following the 2023 season, if not sooner.
The signing of Randy Gregory
This is fresh in the news as the Broncos chose to surprisngly release Randy Gregory on Wednesday. It's only a surprise because of the amount of money the team gave him, it's not a surprise at all considering how poorly he played.
On top of the poor play, Gregory looked like a guy who didn't even want to be on the field. Paton took a chance on the pass-rusher despite a turbulent tenure with the Dallas Cowboys. Still, when the team signed him in March 2022 to a five-year, $70 million deal, it appeared to be a real feather in the cap for Paton, as the Cowboys clearly wanted him back.
I can't deny it, I was a big fan of this signing, as evidenced by the grade I handed out when the deal was made.
The Broncos will still owe Gregory another $10.9 million for the 2023 season and in total, he played in just 10 games for the team and had a total of three sacks. That will lead to him being one of the worst free-agent signings in team history.
What will make this deal unforgivable for many Broncos fans is the fact that it seems Von Miller was interested in a reunion after being traded to the Los Angeles Rams in 2021. Rather than entertaining that idea, Paton never considered Miller and instead signed Gregory.
Bad move and since all of the other moves on this list happened earlier, this may be the one that ends up being the final straw.