Good Morning, Broncos fans! Now that the team has locked up Ryan Clady for the longterm, only first-rounder Sylvester Williams remains unsigned.
It's been reported that the Broncos would like to work on an extension with punter Britton Colquitt, and any other contractual business would likewise cover retaining players beyond 2013.
Apparently, Woodyard and his representatives agree, as Mark Kiszla reports they will ask the team about doing just that.
Prior to the 2012 season, Woodyard had signed a two-year, $3.5M deal as an unrestricted free agent.
At the time, he was still just a special-teams ace and nickel linebacker who would start in the absence of injured players, namely D.J. Williams.
But when D.J. was suspended for the first nine games of 2012, the Kentucky alum had his first real shot at extended playing time, and he took advantage of it in a big way.
As a 14-game starter, Wesley racked up 70 tackles, 5.5 sacks, three interceptions, and six passes defensed, triggering an escalator that takes him from a scheduled $2M salary all the way up to $3M. (The $3.25M figure cited by Kiszla is WW's cap figure, not his salary).
An extension makes sense for both sides: from Denver's perspective, Woody is just 27 and doesn't have a lot of wear and tear on his body, although his slighter stature means he's unlikely to become an ironman-type. It's reasonable to expect another three or four solid years out of him, and the team has enough on its plate next offseason, what with Eric Decker, Zane Beadles, J.D. Walton, and Colquitt set to become unrestricted free agents.
The Broncos also have leverage on their side, as they have Wesley under contract for 2013, with a possible replacement already on the roster, in the form of fellow ex-Wildcat Danny Trevathan.
From Woody's perspective, it's unlikely he could find himself a better fit than with Denver; playing across from or next to Von Miller is never going to be the hardest job on the field. If the absence of D.J. Williams is Reason #1 for Woodyard's breakout 2012 season, then the presence of Von Miller is 1A.
Wesley's also got just one year of major playing time on his resume, so this may be when the iron's hottest.
Getting an extension done now would be wise for both parties, but if Woodyard has Dannell Ellerbe's deal in mind (it's not clear whether it's Kiszla or WW's agent who came up with that comp), then forget about it.
We're thinking that a four-year deal for around $20M would be fair, with about a third of it guaranteed.
Unless, of course, the Broncos think Trevathan can step in and do a good enough job in Wesley's role in 2014 and beyond.
Clady got his $7M roster bonus yesterday and will be paid the most cash of any offensive lineman in football this year, which doesn't mean the Broncos consider him the best lineman in football. Rather, it means he's one of the best, and his contract was up this offseason. Keep this in mind as people continue to freak out over Joe Flacco's deal.
His latest venture through free agency hasn't been kind so far to Justin Bannan, who drew interest from the Chargers in early June. That may be turning around, though, as the former CU Buff will visit the Lions on Monday, and has reportedly drawn some interest elsewhere.
Ashley Fox thinks the absence of Matt Russell and Tom Heckert in the front office this summer is a big storyline. But really, just who is going to keep John Elway from picking up the phone and talking to Russell about roster composition? The NSA? Mind you, we're not endorsing an empty suspension; rather, we can't see it as being an ironclad one.
John Fox covered several topics in a Friday visit with NFLN.
Tampa Bay dealt cornerback Eric Wright to San Francisco in exchange for a conditional pick, but not before they told the Niners about a misdemeanor DUI charge Wright faces from an arrest last week. Doug Farrar would love to know what Jim Harbaugh has to say about the acquisition of Wright - who was suspended last year for PED use - given the moralizing Harbaugh did earlier in the offseason over Seattle's positive drug tests.
Jason La Canfora thinks the Raiders' only path to a new home in the Bay Area would be to move in with the Niners.
PFT Commenter reacts to Ron Jaworski's incomprehensible placement of Flacco as #4 on his ranking of the league's best quarterbacks.
Bill Barnwell lists the quarterbacks he believes have reigned as the league's best in any given year, but there's a major flaw in that he ignores NY/A. By that measure, Peyton Manning wiped the floor with Aaron Rodgers last season, despite Barnwell's claim that Rodgers was just as good.
Like most teams, the Broncos used sub packages against 12 personnel more often than they did in 2011.
Jason Lisk examines the historical oddity of Stevan Ridley's and Alfred Morris's 2012 campaigns, when they racked up huge rushing yardage but hardly ever caught the ball.
2012 election star Nate Silver is leaving the NY Times for the Worldwide Leader, where he'll be a regular contributor on Keith Olbermann's new show.
Updated 12:26pm ET Danny Trevathan was a 2012 sixth-rounder, not an undrafted free agent, as we'd originally written