Latest Russell Wilson report spells the end of his Broncos tenure

The latest news out of Denver makes it pretty clear that Russell Wilson is gone.

Russell Wilson
Russell Wilson / Justin Edmonds/GettyImages
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Say what you will about the Russell Wilson tenure in Denver -- it's absolutely surreal to think that it could be over in less than two years time. We've been waiting ever since Russell Wilson was benched with two games left to play in the 2023 regular season to find out whether or not he would even be back with the team in 2024, despite the Broncos facing $85 million in dead cap if Wilson is cut outright.

It looks like we might be very close to some finality.

In the last week or so, there have been some other rumors floating around that the Broncos and Russell Wilson could perhaps figure out a way for the quarterback to stay in Denver, but a mutual decision to part ways may best for everyone involved, although some would argue that Wilson's best shot at starting in 2024 might actually be in Denver.

Time will tell.

The fact that Wilson and his wife Ciara have put their Denver home on the market is one thing, but accepting offers and giving tours? In case you don't have experience in that arena just yet, that's what happens when you're getting ready to move out.

Like I said before, there is an $85 million dead cap charge the Broncos will have to deal with if Wilson is ultimately cut. If they are able to work out a trade with some team, it will take both Wilson's cooperation as well as the cooperation of another team to get a deal done. And although Wilson's contract is not palatable in the slightest for a trade, a deal could be reworked if Wilson is willing to play ball in order to get to a specific destination.

But Wilson has a no-trade clause, and the Broncos are on the hook for $39 million in 2024 regardless if he plays a down for the team or not. The sticking point with Wilson and the Broncos right now is a mid-March guarantee of $37 million for 2025 that kicks in if he's still on the roster at that point. So, while the Broncos would take on $85 million in dead money, they'd really only be paying Russell Wilson $39 million as opposed to $76 million cash. Is this confusing to anyone yet?

It's going to take one of the most substantial salary cap gymnastics routines the world has ever seen in order to get the Broncos to a point of being able to do damage this offseason with Wilson's deal on the books to that degree. But amazing salary cap gymnastics have been done before...

The estate owned by the Wilson family in Cherry Hills Village is valued at $25 million. To put the house on the market and have tours and offers coming in doesn't leave any gray area. It screams, "Russell Wilson is done in Denver, and we're all waiting to hear about the details."

Less than two years ago, Wilson was acquired in one of the biggest blockbuster deals in NFL history. Denver Broncos GM George Paton took a massive swing with this move, and it's turned out to be a swing and a miss. It's not all Wilson's fault that things didn't turn out the way everyone hoped they would in Denver. The historically bad hire of Nathaniel Hackett played a part, Wilson's health in 2022 played a part, and plenty of other issues have plagued this team.

But Wilson was improved in 2023, markedly so. Unfortunately, it wasn't good enough and Sean Payton made the call to bench Wilson late in the season, a move that felt like it may have been percolating for quite some time behind the scenes.

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Where will Wilson play next? It could be Atlanta, Pittsburgh, Las Vegas, maybe a number of other teams will be interested. My guess is, he'll have something in place with a really good chance to start, but perhaps no guarantee of that. And that will be fascinating to watch from afar in 2024.

Next. 7 potential landing spots for Russell Wilson in 2024. 7 potential landing spots for Russell Wilson in 2024. dark