As long as the Broncos don't sign Vince Young this offseason, Denver fans may sleep in peace.
The team is spending heaps of money and undergoing the swift knife of surgeon John Elway this offseason, as if augmenting both offensive and defensive frames will get them lifting what they ultimately want at the end of the procedure: a Super Bowl trophy in February.
They cut out cornerbacks Champ Bailey and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie. They signed Aqib Talib to a six-year, $57 million deal with $26 million guaranteed. The Broncos snipped out safety Mike Adams, replacing him with Browns safety T.J. Ward. Ward signed a four-year, $23 million contract with $14 million guaranteed.
DenverBroncos.com independent analyst Andrew Mason wrote articles on what Ward and Talib brings to the secondary.
"In leaving the Patriots, Talib departs the place where he turned around his career. The reason why Talib was in New England to begin with was a litany of issues that ranged from an altercation with a teammate to a pair of suspensions, including a four-game ban in 2012 for violation of the league's policy on performance-enhancing substances. Tampa Bay dealt Talib to the Patriots for a fourth-round pick during the 2012 season."
NFL.com's Chris Wesseling discussed in a recent article about the problems that could incur if someone, in this case Denver, overpays the corner.
"The problems with a contract of that magnitude are twofold. Talib has battled nagging hip injuries since the 2010 season, including down the stretch last year. He's also a suspension risk, having already served a four-game ban for violating the PED policy. That doesn't include several off-field incidents, one of which resulted in a one-game suspension for violating the personal conduct policy. There's no shortage of baggage that comes with landing Talib's obvious talent."
In addition to those who weren't re-signed, they also parted ways with one-year signees Quentin Jammer and Michael Huff. This means 2013 rookie Kayvon Webster and veteran Tony Carter will compete for a chance to shut down the right side, while Marquice Cole could spell Talib in certain situations.
The team stacked-and-shed Robert Ayers, who showcased his best performance in a Broncos uniform in 2013 (registered 29 tackles and 5.5 sacks).
"The Denver Broncos agreed Wednesday to a deal with pass rusher DeMarcus Ware, NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport reported, per a source informed of the negotiations. The deal is for three years and worth $30 million, with $20 million guaranteed, according to Rapoport."
Now with Ware on deck, the Broncos potentially could've signed three of top 10 best free agents on the market. After getting spanked by the Seahawks in the Super Bowl, it's no wonder they've been plugging in the glaring holes on defense.
If DeMarcus Ware plays on the right side, Danny Trevathan on the left, and Von Miller alongside Nate Irving hounds the middle. ... I advise you not to bet your gold chain on their chances finishing 13-3 or better.
Take a look at Denver Broncos' 2014 opponents:
Home: Kansas City Chiefs, Oakland Raiders, San Diego Chargers, Buffalo Bills, Miami Dolphins, Indianapolis Colts, Arizona Cardinals, San Francisco 49ers
Away: Kansas City Chiefs, Oakland Raiders, San Diego Chargers, New England Patriots, New York Jets, Cincinnati Bengals, St. Louis Rams, Seattle Seahawks
Looks like a stout defense (barring any setbacks, of course), is a decisive requirement in clinching a playoff berth. The Chargers, Colts and Patriots finished in the top half of the League's ranks in total offense in 2013, and I'd imagine they'd do everything to prevent Rivers, Luck and Brady from having career days.
The Broncos also host the 49ers and the Colts, two marquee matches you're almost certain will carry heavy playoff implications.
The Dallas Cowboys' all-time sack leader-despite being older (31) and showing signs of slowing down (Ware only missed three games last season)-can still chase quarterbacks down.
Dallas finished ahead 32 other teams last year in overall defense, without DeMarcus Ware at 100 percent health.
There are tons of facets to look at when figuring out what makes a team successful. Coaching, chemistry, schemes, salary cap management, team morale, passion-and the list could consume more time than counting beach sand-so please don't book your hotels to Glendale, Ariz. this early.
A friend of mine recently told me to look at the past playoff contenders/Super Bowl champions. He wanted me to notice that all of the strongest teams had solid foundations from top down. From coaching staff to quality players, for instance New England and Bill Belichick, 49ers with Harbaugh and the vocal leaders on both sides of the ball, Seattle with Carroll and how he communicates with his players, New Orleans with Sean Payton and Drew Brees, and lastly, Denver Broncos under Elway and the leadership of field-general Peyton Manning.