NFL Journal: Broncos GM George Paton’s five options regarding OLB Von Miller


As the speculation and dart-throwing kicked into gear last week regarding the future of Broncos outside linebacker Von Miller, the options facing general manager George Paton remain unchanged.

1. Miller plays at his current salary

The Broncos’ all-time leader in sacks (106), Miller keeps his team-high $22.125 million cap hit and shows he has recovered from an ankle injury that cost him all of 2020 by posting double-digit sacks this year. He then signs a new deal to end his career with the Broncos or creates a semi-robust free-agent market for himself. This is realistic since Paton will want to give coach Vic Fangio a chance to play Miller and Bradley Chubb at the same time (only four out of 32 games the past two seasons).

2. Offer Miller a short-term extension

This would be a sign Paton believes Miller has multiple years of production left. It would carry him into his mid-30s and cut his 2020 cap number. It doesn’t make a ton of sense because of last September’s injury.

3. Ask Miller to take a pay cut

This is when things get interesting. Would Miller be willing to stay if his $17 million base salary is cut in half? At that point, his agent, Joby Branion, should start putting out lines to other teams to see if they can top that offer. If so, Miller can turn down the Broncos and get released. If the market isn’t there, Miller can accept the Broncos’ proposal or, if he is disappointed with their request, he starts over elsewhere. This shouldn’t be an option for Paton because he doesn’t have to create cap space via this manner.

4. Trade Miller for a late-round draft choice

Call this The A.J. Bouye-Jurrell Casey Route. Last year, the Broncos flipped fourth- and seventh-round draft picks for Bouye and Casey, respectively, knowing both had no guaranteed money left beyond 2020. If a team is willing to give up a Day 3 pick and absorb the final year of Miller’s deal (which can be re-worked upon the trade being complete), the Broncos at least get something. A shot worth taking for Paton if Miller isn’t in the plan.

5. Release Miller

Like trading him, cutting Miller would create $13.875 million of cap space. He will end up in the Broncos’ Ring of Fame, but won’t be a one-team player. This makes sense.

Around the league

Colts don’t blink. Indianapolis general manager Chris Ballard dug in during trade talks for Philadelphia quarterback Carson Wentz, undoubtedly feeling the Colts were the only suitor. That discipline paid off Thursday when the Eagles flipped Wentz for a 2021 third-round pick and conditional 2022 second-round selection.

Both sides did well — Ballard for not giving up a first-round pick or taking on another big Eagles contract and Philadelphia general manager Howie Roseman for not giving up a pick in addition to Wentz (like the Rams did with Jared Goff).

The Eagles will absorb a $33.4 million dead cap hit, the largest in NFL history, but they are saving $25.4 million in cash, which they can …read more

Source:: The Denver Post – Sports


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