The Age Of Transparency: John Elway Tweets On Champ Bailey

DENVER - OCTOBER 24: Cornerback Champ Bailey #24 of the Denver Broncos runs onto the field before taking on the Oakland Raiders at INVESCO Field at Mile High on October 24 2010 in Denver Colorado. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)

Welcome to the new age of Denver Broncos football - off the field.  We saw it during the search for a new head coach, and now the transparency - the fan-friendly approach - that the Broncos were desperately looking for has been demonstrated during the most controversial contract situation facing the Broncos this off-season - the pending free agency of Champ Bailey.

By now, we all know there were contract talks during the season and reportedly there was a structure in place on a potential deal.  Four years/ $40 million were the numbers being bounced around before the offer was - allegedly - pulled off the table by the Broncos in November.  Not long after Josh McDaniels was fired and everything was put on hold while the regular season ended and the Broncos got their house in order.  John Elway was hired, then John Fox.

Now, a couple of days ago, word broke that the Broncos were once again talking to Bailey about a deal.  The sticking point, according to reports, is guaranteed money.  In the NFL it matters little what you hear a contract is worth.  What matters is the guaranteed money involved.  People have said that Bailey is now looking at the contract Richard Seymour signed - $22.5 million guaranteed - as a guide.  The Broncos, apparently, don't want to go there.

So it begins - the 'unnamed sources, random text-messages and back-alley handshakes'.  Bailey has now begun the process of selling his house.  Fans are organizing a rally this weekend. In the old days, we may not have gotten more than a press release from the Broncos saying they don't talk publicly about contract talks.  Those were the old days.  Now, the Broncos - and team Vice President John Elway - take to Twitter:


We've been working with Champ Bailey's representative this week on a new contract, which is an important priority for us...less than a minute ago via web

Our conversations have been constructive, and we'll continue those talks in the hopes that we can reach an agreement...less than a minute ago via web

Champ's an elite player who means a great deal to our entire organization and our fans...less than a minute ago via web


Where all this leads in the business of football is hard to tell.  Money talks, but so does a player's wants a needs.  Who could blame Champ Bailey if he wanted to go to a team closer to winning a Championship?  Who could really blame the Broncos if they feel, at the end of the day, that Bailey is a luxury that the team simply can't afford at this point in the team's rebuild? 

The important thing is, both sides appear to be working together in good-faith to see if a match can be made.  That doesn't mean there will be - due to no fault of the Broncos or Champ Bailey.  Right now, that's all we can ask for.

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