Broncos should sign Clady, but there’s no rush Lard

Good Morning, Broncos fans! Mike Klis reports that contract negotiations between the Broncos and the representatives for LT Ryan Clady are rather far apart. Klis says a deal is unlikely to be done by the beginning of training camp next week, but there is no significance to such a timeline.

Clady is under contract for 2012 at a $3.5M salary ($4.918M cap number), and the team can certainly use its franchise tag on him following the season ($9.3M this year, likely a shade higher next year), and they could do so again the year after that, if necessary. Time is on Denver's side, and as we view it, they essentially have a year to lock Ryan up with a long-term contract.

Presumably both sides would like to get something done sooner than that, but there's really nothing freakout-worthy here. If Clady wants to make more than $3.5M this season (yes, he deserves it, even if he's not been playing as well as he did his first two years), then he'll probably have to agree to a deal within the next month and a half. But midseason extensions happen too, so there's always that.

Paying one of the better (no, we're not calling him elite) left tackles around $9M-10M next season wouldn't be the worst thing, either. And Ryan is still quite young, as he turns 26 in September. So health-willing, he should be pretty good for the length of two multiyear contracts from now. If the team isn't sure about keeping him around ($), they can always draft a tackle high in next April's draft, and let Clady play out a franchise tag for a year or even two if necessary for the draftee's development.

But whatever the Broncos do, it is pretty clear they don't already have anyone on the roster apt to take over the position a year from now.

No, an elite LT isn't necessary - nor one even in the top half of the league, as Ted has pointed out several times of late - but acquiring a decent one requires either a high draft choice or big bucks in free agency.

Might as well sign the guy they've got. But there's no rush to do so.

Anyway, there's my opinion. Let's see yours, with our very first poll below. As David mentioned earlier, you don't have to be a registered commenter to vote.

Broncos

According to SI, Peyton Manning remains the highest-paid NFLer when combining salary and endorsements, and at least in this instance, they are eschewing the reader-abusive slideshow often used for these purposes.

Mario Fannin tells the official site that the injury which cost him his rookie season provided him the time to learn the pro game better, in terms of absorbing the playbook and understanding how better to pick up the blitz.

Also in a Q&A with the official site, defensive quality control coach Cory Undlin says he's worked with the defensive line before under Jack Del Rio, who brought him over from Jacksonville. Oh, and Undlin may be another spy for Hoodie Sr., under whom he coached earlier in his career.

Sam Davis previews the linebacker position for the official site, shockingly without mention of D.J. Williams's six-game suspension. Obviously we don't expect them to discuss it, but it happens to be the most important topic relating to the linebackers this season.

Even if it's at Doom's expense, it's good to see that one of the billboards used to fan the Tebowmania flames is now being repurposed in a humorous manner.

The oddsmakers at MGM currently have the Broncos at 7/1 SB odds, trailing the Niners(4/1!), Packers and Patriots (both 6/1).

Russ Lande figures Knowshon Moreno and fellow 2009 AFCW first-rounders Larry English and Tyson Jackson are in danger of being cut this summer.

Over at the Worldwide Leader, Cris Carter and Marcellus Wiley discuss the Broncos' 2012 prospects. It's part of an AFCW special which reairs tonight and tomorrow night, I believe on ESPN2.

Trimmings

Seattle RB Marshawn Lynch reportedly had two near-collisions before his DUI arrest; here are more details of the allegations against 23-year-old Cowboys WR Dez Bryant, accused of domestic violence against his 37-year-old mother.

Oakland remains Cedric Benson's likeliest landing spot, but the Jets and Packers have reportedly shown passing interest as well.

Pittsburgh re-signed LT Max Starks for a year; Chicago added RB Lorenzo Booker; Titans WR Kenny Britt recently had his knee scoped for the second time since May; Tennessee hired ex-Bears GM Tim Ruskell as a regional scout. Now that Josh Scobee has a long-term deal, the Jaguars waived backup kicker Brandon Coutu.

Former Seahawks lineman Grant Feasel died at 52 of unpublicized causes.

Scrapple

The Chiefs are going to allow a fan to work as a sideline reporter for their last of this year's preseason games; wouldn't it be great for a Denver fan to sneak into this role and troll KC?

Michael Vick's book tour is continuing with some heartbreaking revelations and TV dummies screwing up.

Greg Cosell details Dick LeBeau's role in increasing the prevalance of the zone blitz, and the ZB's evolution into a sub-package staple.

Chase Stuart's look at Pythagorean wins finds Peyton Manning, Jake Plummer, and John Elway are/were all either really clutch or really lucky. Probably a combination of both, of course.

Scott Kacsmar goes into even more detail on the Packers and Aaron Rodgers's mighty struggles in the fourth quarter. Great as he is, he's no John Elway - not that any of us didn't know that before, right?

Matt Bowen analyzes a TD by Giants WR Victor Cruz against the Eagles and their Cover-0 blitz, and he explains how that very blitz scheme is supposed to work.

Bucky Brooks makes a seemingly easy choice in saying he'd take Saints RB Darren Sproles over the man he replaced in New Orleans, Miami's Reggie Bush.

Over at Chris Brown's site, Patrick McCarthy explores trends in the use of read run plays at the college level.

Offal

We should all feel great shame for not having realized at an earlier juncture that Jay Cutler is actually a housecat. It is an ironclad case.

The latest out of Happy Valley is that a plane flew a banner threatening to take down the statue of Joe Paterno, and PSU leadership passed on an opportunity to wrest power away from the football program back in 2004. Brown University is disassociating itself from their late alum Paterno, and SI is backing away from Joe Posnansky's Paterno slobberfest. Oh, and there are still psychotic PSU fans out there hanging onto the mythical notion of Paterno's greatness.

It really is funny that after Jeremy Lin gave people an actual reason to give a flying f$%# about the Knicks this year, that some people think Lin "owes" Jim Dolan, who happens to be one of the worst, and dumbest, owners in all of pro sports.

Ryan Clady has one year and $3.5M remaining on his rookie contract. What should the Broncos do about him long-term?

Clady is eligible for free agency next year, and the franchise tag for tackles is currently at $9.3M for one year. It will likely be incrementally higher than that figure next year. Clady's play has dropped off a bit over the past two years, but he's still only 25 (he'll turn 26 in September) and widely considered as being among the top half of the league's left tackles. The QB switch to the lightning-fast decision-maker Peyton Manning from the scramble-prone Tim Tebow should make Clady's job easier and his performance look better.

Doug is IAOFM’s resident newsman and spelling czar. Follow him on Twitter @IAOFM

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