I did not see this one coming.
According to NFL insider Jordan Schultz, the Denver Broncos made an aggressive push to sign former Green Bay Packers wide receiver Allen Lazard. He ended up signing a four-year, $44 million dollar deal with the New York Jets, but reportedly, the Broncos tried hard to acquire the big wide receiver.
Schultz notes that the Broncos really valued his toughness and route running ability.
Sources: #Broncos were also very aggressive in their pursuit of WR Allen Lazard, but likely would have had to make a trade. Denver really values his toughness and route-running. @theScore https://t.co/HajPOzr8MV— Jordan Schultz (@Schultz_Report) March 15, 2023
There is a lot to unpack here.
First, the Broncos almost spent pretty decent money on another wide receiver, which is pretty interesting considering they handed out extensions to Tim Patrick and Courtland Sutton not that long ago. It also is a sign that newly hired head coach Sean Payton is not satisfied with the Broncos' current wide receivers. A sign of that is the Broncos taking calls on wide receivers Jerry Jeudy. Courtland Sutton, and K.J. Hamler. If the Broncos were to agree to terms with Lazard, one of those three, likely Sutton and his contract, would have to go. So, the odds of a potential Courtland Sutton trade continue to increase.
Now, why would the Broncos be interested in Allen Lazard? He is another big wide receiver with a similar skill set to Sutton and Tim Patrick. However, the one major difference between Lazard and those two is his run blocking. Lazard is known as one of the better run-blocking wide receivers in the NFL and this has been a trait that Payton and Paton have coveted in their free agents thus far.
The Broncos signed two maulers in Ben Jones and Mike McGlinchey to improve their offensive line. They continued by signing one of the best run-blocking tight ends and a running back known as an excellent pass blocker in Samaje Perine. The Broncos are building an identity and continue to target players who fit that identity.
I do not think we are done with changes happening at wide receiver. If the Broncos were willing to pay that much for Lazard, they may have a few other moves up their sleeve. I also think the odds of them trading a receiver or two continue to go up.