The Denver Broncos rocked the NFL world this week by stealing away quarterback Russell Wilson from the Seattle Seahawks for just two first rounders and two second rounders along with some players. Denver really didn’t give up much to get a Hall of Fame caliber quarterback, which means they can begin focusing on filling out other roster holes without worrying too much about the the lost picks.
With 9 picks in the 2022 NFL Draft and plenty of cap space to start free agency, general manager George Paton has options. On Thursday, we held a roundtable to discuss the biggest needs on the team and the consensus came to edge rusher, right tackle, and a combination of either inside defensive line or inside linebacker. Edge is where we all mostly felt was the single biggest need.
While the draft this year is considered deep at the edge rusher position, Denver won’t have any draft picks high enough to take advantage. That means free agency is probably the best place to start. That brings us to a post from ESPN+ covering the best free agent fit for each team according to Pro Football Focus. They had the Broncos zeroed in on edge rusher Haason Reddick.
Broncos general manager George Paton said recently that the team expects Bradley Chubb to get back to the level of play he has shown when healthy. But even with Chubb’s return, edge defender stands out as an area of need for Denver. Reddick has an explosive first step and wins with his speed and quickness off the edge. His 99 quarterback pressures over the past two years are tied for 15th among edge rushers. Getting that pressure off the edge was an area where the Broncos really struggled last year, particularly after trading Von Miller.
Reddick, 27, is entering his sixth season in the NFL and coming off his first season starting every single game. In 27 starts over the last two seasons, he has piled up 23.5 sacks and has established himself as a solid edge rusher.
Personally, I would prefer Von Miller even though Von is five years older. I like that familiarity and Miller has proven he can still play at a high level. PFF went further to address this by suggesting edge rusher is now the Broncos biggest positional need and gave their verdict on whether to focus on free agency or the draft to fix it. While they had Riddick as the best fit in the ESPN article, they noted that the most ideal scenario would be to bring Von Miller back.
This edge class is deep … but not find a starter at Pick No. 64 kind of deep. The Broncos have a nice chunk of change to play with, even after trading for Russell Wilson. With that in mind, the ideal scenario would be reuniting with Von Miller on a modest two-year, $34 million deal. He proved quite clearly down the stretch in 2021 that he has something left in the tank (finished with a 91.0 overall grade on the year) and was openly pining on Instagram earlier this week to go back to Denver.
I found it odd that PFF would tell ESPN that Haason Reddick was the perfect fit in Denver, then say Von Miller would be the ideal scenario. I’m okay with both options to be frank, but at different costs.
If the going rate for Von is $17 million a year, then I would probably balk a bit. He is getting older and while he’ll go down as one of the greatest Broncos in franchise history, Denver still has to be smart with how it spends its salary cap as they look to compete for Super Bowls with Russell Wilson.
Reddick’s market value is substantially lower and Denver could, theoretically snag him for the $14-15M APY range. Spotrac considers his market value at around 5 years for $76 million. That would lock Riddick down through the remaining “prime years”. Now Spotrac isn’t always on point and they have Von Miller pegged at $10.5M a year market value. So if that is the case, I would take Von all day.
What do you think the Broncos should do at edge?
What would be the best option for the Broncos here if both cost the same?
This poll is closed
Sign Reddick at $17M / yr
Resign Von at $17M / yr