The second of Denver's ten unrestricted free agents is Brandon Stokley. Please remember that an unrestricted free agent is a player who: (a)has four accrued service years with the NFL, (b)is not currently under contract with an NFL team, (c)is free to negotiate a contract with any NFL team and (d)whose previous team is not entitled to any compensation for the player's signing with a new team. Let's take a look at Brandon:
Brandon Stokley, Wide Receiver, UFA
Stokley is a fourteen-year veteran in the NFL. He has spent four of those seasons with Denver (2007-09 and 2012). He joined the Broncos on March 14, 2007 as a free agent. He was given a three-year extension to his contract on December 7, 2007. The Broncos released him on September 4, 2010. He returned the Broncos -- after short stints with the Seattle Seahawks and the New York Giants -- signing a one-year contract on April 16, 2012.
In his four seasons as a Bronco, Stokley has accumulated the following statistics:
|2007||13||9||40(3rd)||635 (2nd)||5 (2nd Tie)|
|2008||15||2||49 (3rd)||528 (4th)||3 (4th Tie)|
|2009||16||2||19 (8th)||327(5th)||4 (2nd)
|2012||15||9||45 (4th)||544 (4th)||5 (3rd Tie)|
The numbers in parentheses show Stokley's ranking on the team in that season.
Over the course of his career, Stokley has proven to be one of the most effect slot wide receivers in the league. In 2012, he became just the tenth 36+ year old player in NFL history to record both thirty or more catches and five or more touchdowns in a single season. He spent four seasons in Indianapolis (2003-06) catching throws from quarterback Peyton Manning. The Colts won the AFC South title each of those four seasons.
Stokley is probably best remembered as the recipient of the "Immaculate Deflection." In the 2009 season opener against the Cincinnati Bengals, the Broncos were trailing 7-6 with 28 seconds left on the clock. Bengals' cornerback tipped a pass intended for Denver wide receiver Brandon Marshall. The ball dropped into the waiting arms of Stokley who outran Cincinnati defenders 57 yards before turning to run parallel to the goal line at the Bengals' 5-yard line. He ran an additional six seconds off the clock before stepping into the end zone to complete the 87-yard pass play. That play set the NFL record for the longest game-winning touchdown from scrimmage in the last minute of a game.
Next Up: Matthew Willis, Wide Receiver, UFA