Free Agent, Free Agent, Who’s Got The Free Agent

I don’t really have a lot more to write about NFL free agency, but thought it might be a fun exercise to predict where some of the top free agents could be headed.

I pulled Walter Football’s list of top 90 free agents, sorted out the players who will or are likely getting a franchise tag, removed the restricted free agents (because most likely will get high tenders from their current teams) then looked at a few other names and projected where I think they will be headed.

Walter Football’s rankings, of course, are just one site’s opinion, so I stuck with the players I imagine most everyone would agree are the best of the free agents out there. Either way, this is just something I’m doing for kicks. This is by no means a complete list of free agents and those I list as getting the franchise tag isn’t the full list of that, either
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Mike Klis Documents Evan Mathis’s Journey To Super Bowl Champion

There is so much good stuff in this article, but it’s important to highlight the key factor that led Mathis from Philadelphia to Denver.  As Mathis said to Klis:

There were many things that Chip had done that showed me he wasn’t building a championship team. Two of the main issues that concerned me were: 1. A never-evolving, vanilla offense that forced our own defense to play higher than normal play counts. 2. His impatience with certain personality types even when they were blue-chip talents. The Broncos team I was on would have eaten Chip alive. I don’t think he could have handled the plethora of large personalities.

The first point should be a strong point against Kelly being some revolutionary genius. But the second point is more important, and it’s is a trap that so many coaches coming from college fall into. It’s easy enough to run over college-aged personalities, but players in the NFL have been through that gauntlet before, and aren’t interested in getting run over again after that experience.

I also have to highlight how he demanded to leave Philly, in a way that is a prime example of Mathis’s humor:

Most players would use their agent to handle such a task. Mathis directly texted Kelly with a YouTube video of Engelbert Humperdink singing, “Please release me, let me go. …

Given the injuries that he was going through, I would have preferred “I’ll hold the pain, release me“, but if the goal was maximum annoyance of Kelly, pure 1980s ballads are the way to go.

A Counterpoint On The Von Miller Contract Negotiations

This will be primarily a devil’s advocate post.  I still strongly believe that it’s in the best interest of the Broncos to secure a contract extension with Von Miller right now to take advantage of gaining 2016 cap space.  However, I’m resigned to the fact that this likely won’t happen, and the more likely scenario is for this to follow the same arc as Ryan Clady and Demaryius Thomas: place a franchise tender on Miller now, with an extension ultimately coming before the July 15 deadline.

However, I’m going to explore what benefits there may be to letting Miller play out the 2016 season on the franchise tag.

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It’s All Orange, Fat Man: 02/21/16

Bill Polian, ESPN analyst/former GM of the Indianapolis Colts

On what the Broncos should do once they start negotiating with Brock Osweiler:

Well… Let’s assume for the moment that Coach Kubiak and John Elway have decided that Brock is the guy going forward. If that’s the case, you sit down with [Brock and] his agent and you say, “Listen… We’ll craft you a contract that pays you what an average starting QB in the NFL makes. Maybe a little bit below because he has only paid seven games. But, we’ll load it with incentives so if you perform the way you did for the seven games this past season, or five games and two halves I guess is the best way to put that. We’ll load it with incentives and we will give you another bite of the apple two years from now. Why are we doing this? Because we don’t know — necessarily — whether you are a great quarterback yet. We think you have a chance to be, you fit our offense perfectly, and for you to stay here with a great defense, an offense that suits you with great receivers, with a coach, a system, and a franchise you’re familiar with, and a great place to live and work, we think that this is a good investment for you. And in two years, if you prove that you are the guy, then we’ll do what we need to do and we will pay you accordingly.” That would be my opening gambit. I bet the agent would say, “No, No we have been here for four years… Franchise him.” So, somewhere between those two points is probably a point of agreement. My guess would be that unless the agent has something really, really firm from a team that would approximate, I’m not talking Cleveland now, that would approximate the Broncos for the ability to win and be on the national stage, or what have you, that he would be amenable to [leave]. It will be a rough negotiation and it will delve all the way until the end.

I think this is why it benefits the Broncos to wait until Peyton makes his move first. There aren’t any teams out there looking for a QB that are similar to the Broncos in the championship race which means even though there are some suitors for Brock, they aren’t in the same winning position and aren’t comparable as a great place to live (Cleveland). If the Broncos wait, they get to start at their price on March 9th instead of mid February which means they are more likely to get a deal closer to a $12 million AAV than a $15 million AAV with not as many guarantees.

Full interview here.

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The Tangerine Bowl: Dr. Rick Perea, P.H.D, DK2 Motivation/Denver Broncos


Over the past couple of days, I have gotten the chance to be at the Glazier Clinic, which is a football clinic held for coaches that are around the Rocky Mountain region of the United States. There are a lot of great speakers that were there including Craig Johnson the RB coach for the NY Giants, Mike Bobo the head coach for Colorado State, and more importantly for you guys, Dr. Rick Perea, who does most of his counseling work for the Denver Broncos. He is a great guy, enthusiastic, and he is the kind of guys that wakes up everyday thinking it will be the best day of his life. On top of that, he is incredibly informed about the root of motivation in athletes and is an incredibly helpful resource for coaches of all levels.

When I saw his name on the list, I decided that this was something that I could not miss or skip so, I sat in on his talk. He had a lot of great points about motivation and had some insights as to how the Broncos won the Superbowl from a psychological and motivation standpoint. I now present to you some of the things he shared over the course of the talk. Keep in mind that even though most of these are direct quotes, I might have not gotten the whole thing in verbatim. So please take these as paraphrasings if nothing else. Enjoy.

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The Dominance Of The Pat Bowlen Era, Team By Team

So I decided to take a quickish break on this Saturday, and I investigated the win-loss records of the NFL from 1984 to present.  We all know the well-circulated stat that the Broncos under Pat Bowlen have more Super Bowl appearance (7) than losing seasons (5).  But after churning out the results, I am quite proud to discover that since 1984, the Broncos have the best winning percentage (.612) in the league, with a win-loss record of 334-212-1.  Only the Patriots (.606) and 49ers (.605) are super close, followed by the Steelers (.588) and Packers (.573).  No other teams are above .560.

When you break the records down head-to-head, another proud statistic emerges: since 1984, only 6 of the other 31 teams have a winning record against the Broncos. And with this, I will offer a pop quiz for this weekend: name those six teams.  Try your best not to cheat, or if you do, try not to share the results in the comments.  Either way, the answer may surprise you a bit.  Sometime later this weekend, I’ll create a fold to this post that will include the tables of these records below.

UPDATE: (8:15 PM MT) After a few hints, orangeandblueaussie got the six teams:

  • Dolphins (it took Tebow magic to finally beat them in Miami for the first time)
  • Jaguars (The Broncos do terribly in the state of Florida)
  • Rams (longest drought the Broncos have against any team, dating back to 2002)
  • Giants (Amani Toomer was a Bronco-killer in his career)
  • Ravens (too many bad memories to comment further)
  • Colts (it was so easy to hate Peyton Manning out of jealously in the previous decade).

The tables I promised are beyond the fold.

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