The Broncos and Elvis Dumervil's new agent, Tom Condon, recently appealed to the league office to have the defensive end's reworked three-year, $30M contract recognized. As anyone familiar with how the Ginger Hammer operates might expect, the NFL turned down the request.
But as Mike Klis suggests, honoring the verbal agreement between Denver and Dumervil would set a precedent the league would like end up regretting.
Klis says the Ravens - whose linebackers coach is Don Martindale, the former Broncos LB coach (2009) and DC (2010) - have already been discussing contract parameters with Condon for Dumervil's services.
Updated 6:29pm ET
Following the stunning news that a fax snafu had resulted in the release of Elvis Dumervil after he'd agreed to a pay cut, both the Broncos and Marty Magid, Dumervil's agent, have shared their versions of events.
This drama has the potential to join Jay Cutler's alleged phone snub of owner Pat Bowlen, and Tim Tebow's claim that the Broncos didn't give him a choice between trade destinations, in the annals of Broncos communication breakdowns.
As usual, the truth likely lies somewhere between Magid's retelling, which he shared with USA Today's Mike Garafolo, and John Elway's, as told to Mike Klis of the Denver Post. Let's line them up to compare:
Updated 9:28pm ET
A few days ago, we suggested that cutting Elvis Dumervil before the start of free agency would be the right thing to do, and the proper sendoff to a player who'd given seven years to the team.
Turns out, waiting was the best course of action.
According to Adam Schefter, Dumervil has agreed to a pay cut, and will remain with the Broncos for the 2013 season.
Elvis Dumervil landed $43.156M in guarantees in 2010. More recently, Tom Brady got $57M guaranteed, while Joe Flacco got $52M. Staggering figures, and big news, right?
Sure, except for the part about the guarantees.
Here at IAOFM, we've long taken pride in focusing on the guaranteed portions of player contracts. The advertised length and total value of deals tend to be farces, which only serve to make players seem better paid than they really are, and for their agents to prop up their own reputations.
Originally reported as a one-year deal for $5M, it turns out Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie got a two-year contract, with a voidable second year.
According to Aaron Wilson, DRC's deal is worth $10M over two seasons, with a $4.2M signing bonus, $800K salary in 2013, and voidable $5M salary for 2014. Jason La Canfora reports that the second year voids as long as Rodgers-Cromartie is on Denver's roster five days after the next Super Bowl.
Adding a voidable year, which is essentially a phantom extension of a one-year contract, is done solely for the purposes of spreading a cap hit.
Now that the excitement of free agency's opening act has ended, defensive stars (or former stars) in their mid-thirties are taking the stage.
On Friday, New England will host Colts DE Dwight Freeney, who has been discussed as a possible replacement for Elvis Dumervil in Denver. The Pats will also host Cards S Adrian Wilson and Falcons DE John Abraham.
San Francisco is reportedly having serious discussions with both Packers S Charles Woodson and Eagles CB Nnamdi Asomugha.
Baltimore remains interested in Steelers LB James Harrison.
Updated 9:30pm ET
More from Jason La Canfora on the Broncos not being done: (4:00pm ET)
Denver is not done adding players even after the addition of Welker, Terrance Knighton and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and the franchising of left tackle Ryan Clady.
They still want to address pass rusher and will release Elvis Dumervil if he does not take a reduced salary rather than pay him $12 million, with Connor Barwin, Dwight Freeney and Richard Seymour among the potential targets. They still could add depth in the secondary as well, according to a league source.
Due to the cap situation we'd mentioned earlier, it's not likely the Broncos could sign anyone else before the Dumervil situation is settled, or they've released another player or reworked another deal. Mike Klis's assessment of Denver's cap status would appear to agree with that sentiment. (4:00pm ET)
Updated 10:55pm ET
Champ Bailey has another new partner, and the Broncos continue to be active early in this year's free agency period. According to Adam Schefter, Denver agreed to terms with former Eagles corner Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie on a one-year deal.
For the seemingly ageless Bailey, there's never a dull offseason in Denver, whether it's the revolving door of defensive coordinators, or the constant swapping of cornerbacks across the field from him. To wit, he's played in Denver under Larry Coyer, Bob Slowik, Mike Nolan, Wink Martindale, Dennis Allen, and Jack Del Rio, while he's partnered with Kelly Herndon, Darrent Williams (RIP), Dre' Bly, Andre' Goodman, Perrish Cox, Tracy Porter, Chris Harris, and now Rodgers-Cromartie.
A pair updates of interest from Mike Klis:
1. There's been no progress between the Broncos and Elvis Dumervil; Klis thinks this could stretch until Friday, which is essentially Denver's deadline. Of course, now that PMFM & Co. will be posting 40+ per game, who needs defense?
2. Manning was among those to put in a recruiting call to Wes Welker, which had to be somewhat bittersweet for Peyton, assuming he's not a cyborg (big assumption). Welker figures to replace Brandon Stokley, who was part of the Duke reenactment of the 2009 AFC title game, hosted Manning for his first recruiting trip to Denver last year, and came out of retirement to join his buddy with the Broncos.
Updated 8:56pm ET
The Broncos defense will have 660 pounds of mass at its fulcrum (the literal one, not the figurative one that is Von Miller) this season, assuming Terrance Knighton is able to win a starting job next to Kevin Vickerson.
Knighton was selected by Jacksonville in the third round of the 2009 Draft (72nd overall) when Jack Del Rio was their head coach, and he played under Denver's current DC for two and a half seasons, until Del Rio was fired in 2011.