When the Denver Broncos announced that Brock Osweiler would be returning, and that T.J. Ward was being released, it felt like Twitter might burn to the ground. Fans lost their minds, but in the end, it proved one big truth. John Elway is not just the President of Football operations for the team. He is a BOSS.
Not THE boss, A boss. The distinction is important. Yes, Elway is the boss of the Broncos. It is very clear who is in charge in Dove Valley. Not only that, Elway seems to be unafraid to manipulate circumstances to his favor. As Ian St. Clair and I discussed on the Mile High Report Radio podcast, the moves Elway made over the last week have proven he is willing to do whatever he feels is best for the organization.
This is not an endorsement of every move. In fact, there have been more than a few times during the offseason which led me to question Elway’s decision making. With Paxton Lynch failing to take over, and so many second- and third-round draft picks not materializing, it is possible to be critical of many of Elway’s personnel decisions.
This leads to what happened following the final preseason game. Ignoring the fan hype, Kyle Sloter was cut. He had a chance to sign to the Broncos practice squad, but chose to take the money and leave for the Minnesota Vikings. Elway doesn’t care if you like it or not. He clearly had a plan. With Sloter gone, the Broncos needed a backup for Trevor Siemian, and Elway had to know Osweiler would be available.
Osweiler was the quarterback Elway always wanted. Now, he has him for $15.2 million less than it would have cost if he stayed. If Osweiler had stayed, Lynch would probably be in Dallas right now. Essentially, Elway got his QB, and paid next to nothing for him. That is the definition of a Boss move. Whether you like the signing or not, it was orchestrated to perfection.
There are some out there in conspiracy world that believe the Broncos were slow in naming a starter because Osweiler looked like he might become available. Lo and behold, there he was on cut day, and Elway jumped at the chance. That may be too tin foil hat, but a little conspiracy theory here and there can be fun.
John Elway, who let Brock Osweiler walk away for $72 million last offseason, just re-signed his former QB for like $10— 12up (@12upSport) September 2, 2017
You sly devil you pic.twitter.com/fWjQiXLMb8
The next boss move involved Ward. Many in Broncos Country were extremely disappointed in this move. When the Broncos cut Ward it felt to some like the franchise may be floundering. Ward thought it was unprofessional. Even some of the Broncos players chimed in on social media.
Did that sway Elway? Not even a little bit. Elway does not care about fan opinions, and he doesn’t care about player opinions either. Did he think about losing the locker room? Nope. Was he worried about a player revolt? It sure seems like he didn’t. And as far as anyone can tell, there hasn’t been a player revolt.
The fact is, moving on from Ward is the right move. He never seemed to recover from his hamstring injury. It gives Justin Simmons the opportunity to take over at free safety. This moves Darian Stewart to the strong safety position, his natural position. It is a move that makes the defense better, and Elway isn’t worried about sentiment, doing right by veterans, or how they can make Ward happy. He is worried about winning and the bottom line. That was all this move was about.
No one is claiming that Elway is a genius GM who must be followed off a cliff. Most fans can objectively look at the moves he has made and form their own opinion. However, if there is one thing that can be taken away from the insanity of last week it is this: John Elway is the Denver Broncos.
Only a true boss gets to make that claim.