Good morning, Von Miller Country!
So...there's really nothing to talk about today, is there? ;)
I heard there was some sort of contract negotiation going on this morning, but since I'm confident the Super Bowl MVP is signing his - probably right now - I'm not sure what other negotiations anyone in Broncos Country would really care about?
Multiple sources close to negotiation with Von Miller are "very confident we get this thing knocked out tomorrow morning"— Benjamin Allbright (@AllbrightNFL) July 15, 2016
With a six-year deal worth $114 million that eclipses $70 million in guarantees on the table, all signs point to a deal getting done (and if for some ludicrous reason, Von Miller does not want to sign that deal, I will personally go Bachata his dancing a$$ into taking it).
But that reminds me...I do want to bring something up with all of you:
There are 878 of you who are not listening to me closely enough.
When I tell you not to panic, DO. NOT. PANIC. Here are three simple reasons to help you remember this next year at this time:
1. If it bleeds, it leads
It's during these offseason lulls that I cringe at just about every NFL story reported in the "sports media." Contract "reports" are almost never news stories; they are negotiation tactics. Whether intentionally or unintentionally, journalists (using a loose definition here) are used by one side or the other to gain some leverage.
Honestly, I don't see that this really works, but nevertheless it is a reality - and one to be ignored. For example, Mike Klis' headlines the past 10 days:
July 5 - Von Miller's future on the brink
July 8 - Von Miller, Broncos resume contract talks
July 12 - Broncos not trying to trade Von Miller - for now
9 p.m. July 14 - Von Miller expected to accept the Broncos $114.5 million offer by deadline
If you actually followed Klis' stuff the last two weeks, you would likely be on meds by now over this Miller contract.
The exact same thing happened last year with Demaryius Thomas' contract negotiations. There was so much back-and-forth in the mainstream media between people not actually "in the know" that there was genuine surprise when it was reported a deal had been reached.
For a second year in a row this has happened, and I'm confident this will go the same as the last - with the Broncos signing their guy. I know there are still fax machine fears in Broncos Country, but you'll be happy to know almost no one working in the NFL offices these days even knows what a fax machine actually is.
2. I know these things
I did predict a Super Bowl win - even when a few of my colleagues were losing confidence:
This is such a typical, roller coaster, heart-attack-inducing, typical #Broncos game.— MileHighReport (@MileHighReport) February 8, 2016
But my track record isn't what makes me confident about Von. It is the Broncos' track record to keep - and sign - the players they really want (Elvis Dumervil aside) to have on the team - Thomas, Chris Harris Jr., Derek Wolfe, Brandon Marshall. And you know Elway really wants to keep the guy who is arguably the best overall athlete on the team - and maybe in all of the NFL.
The fact that it goes down like this every year with every team is annoying for sure. But we know this is the way it is. Ian St. Clair reminded us a few weeks ago not to worry. I said yesterday not to panic.
Trust us. Von Miller will be wearing only Orange and Blue on Sundays.
3. C'mon, it's John Elway
I'm not advising this trust out of blind loyalty to the Orange and Blue. I'm advising it out of blind loyalty to John Elway and the Orange and Blue. And that's not to say that the GM is perfect or that he definitely won't overpay for a player. I'm sure he will - and has. What I'm saying is, don't panic.
Remember how you felt watching Elway the quarterback play in the 1987-88 and 1988-89 AFC Championship games, or the 1991-92 divisional playoff against the Oilers, or just about half the games played in any one season? You were nervous. Super nervous. You knew the odds were stacked against the Broncos and winning was improbable.
Yet, you also knew it was Elway, and if anyone could get us out of the tight spot and win, it was No. 7. So you may have been pacing, but you weren't leaving the room because really, you knew a win was a strong possibility if not a sure thing.
You have to view these contract talks the same way. Elway may throw an incomplete pass every now and then, but he knows how to get the ball over the goal line (cheesy football analogies courtesy of reading too many @9News articles this week).
If we were the Cleveland Browns or the Tampa Bay Buccaneers or [insert 20 out of 31 other teams here], then yes, by all means freak out. Panic that your star linebacker - the one your GM drafted in the first round of his first draft, a player who single-handedly inspired a Super Bowl-winning performance out of his team - hasn't signed and there are less than 12 hours to go.
Or...instead remember who is in charge and sit back, relax, read some news about all those poor teams who didn't sign their franchise player to a long-term deal and wait until about 2:30 p.m. MT today to catch up on the specifics of Miller's mega-deal.
After all the acrimony and anger, who would have thought Von Miller was the franchise player most likely to land a deal at the deadline?— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) July 15, 2016
I know this is a lot of money and that the negotiation battle the last month has been annoying. But remember two things - Elway will not hamstring this team, and Von Miller is a special talent.
If Elway didn't think $70 million in guarantees couldn't be absorbed, he wouldn't do it. Sure it affects potentially better contracts for some other players (namely Emmanuel Sanders), but Elway has been able to keep improving this team with a lot of moving pieces and big names so far, so we shouldn't stop trusting his decisions yet.
And if you need a reminder why Miller is so important to this team, just say "60 sacks in 72 games" and then watch this:
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