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Broncos’ Ja’Wuan James opts out for 2020

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The starting right tackle has taken the opt-out option, leaving Denver’s offensive line thinner than hoped for the year.

Denver Broncos v Seattle Seahawks Photo by Alika Jenner/Getty Images

UPDATE:

The impact on the cap situation due to Ja’Wuan James’ opt-out has been updated. As Tom Pelissero notes, Ja’Wuan James’ entire $13 million salary for 2020 is removed from the cap this year.

Mike Klis had reported on Monday that James decided to opt out of the 2020 season.

The starting right tackle missed most of last season due to injury, and the Broncos were hoping an injury-free return in 2020 would help solidify an improving-but-fragile offensive line.

Coming to the Broncos in 2019 as a free agent from Miami, James played just a few games in Orange and Blue. He got 10 snaps in Week 1 of the 2019 season before going down with a left knee injury that kept him out until Week 8. A second knee injury took him out for the rest of the season.

James was signed by the Broncos to a lucrative four-year, $51 million deal with $32 million in guaranteed money - which hasn’t paid off for Denver.

James is the second Bronco to take the opt-out option for players because of COVID-19 concerns. DT Kyle Peko also announced last week he was taking the opt-out.

This news is not great for Drew Lock as backup Elijah Wilkinson - who played in James’ place most of last season - is starting 2020 on the PUP list.