Aqib Talib is a player that has gotten better since he came to the Denver Broncos in 2014. In 2017, he was one of the least targeted cornerbacks in the NFL and for good reason. He spearheaded a secondary that helped the Broncos to fourth overall in yards per game, despite the No Fly Zone widely being seen as no longer dominant.
While that might be the case, the No Fly Zone was still dangerous and dangerous means they are still a good unit.
Aqib Talib 2017 Stats
Aqib Talib PFF Grade
According to Pro Footbll Focus, Talib was an elite cornerback by every measure they could come up with. He ranked fifth in the NFL in tackling efficiency for a cornerback and fourth in the NFL in coverage efficiency. These are both metrics that PFF puts a lot of effort into and I have a lot of faith in how they grade for efficiency.
Combine that with Talib finishing 15th overall in the NFL with an 86.2 grade and you have an elite player on your hands. One area he did slip in over last year was in run support where he graded out at 78.8.
Aqib Talib Contract
As good as Talib is, his contract is likely why he may have played his last down in a Broncos uniform. He is due a big chunk of salary this season, but the Broncos could cut $11M in cap at the price of just $1M in dead money. That is a nuclear option they may need to bring in a high-priced quarterback free agent like Kirk Cousins.
Talib’s status will likely be determined in early March. I have to believe he has trade value being one of the best cornerbacks in the NFL for multiple years now, so if John Elway is confident he is going to land a big name quarterback in free agency we could see Talib “suddenly” dealt to another team to free up the cap space to give the team the flexibility they need to make that big free agent splash.
Is now the time for the Broncos to get value for Talib in the trade market?
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