Talib deal shows Broncos are going all in to catch Seattle

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On February 2, the Broncos learned the hard way the importance of having a top-flight secondary.  To repeat a Groundhog Day-style repeat of what happened on Groundhog Day, they spent the first day of free agency spending on help for the last line of defense.

Not long after the market opened, the Broncos added safety T.J. Ward.  Then came the stunner:  Patriots cornerback Aqib Talib, knocked out of the AFC title game by a supposed cheap shot from Denver receiver Wes Welker, has joined the three-time defending AFC West champs.

The bogarting by the Broncos of Talib becomes one of the most fascinating developments of the day, for plenty of reasons beyond the fact that Talib, who tested positive for marijuana multiple times in college at Kansas, will now live in a state where the substance is legal for recreational use.

First, the money paid to Talib — reportedly $57 million over six years with $26 million guaranteed — takes the Broncos out of the running for Buccaneers cornerback Darrelle Revis, who’ll be cut Wednesday if not traded before then.

Second, the move puts even more pressure on the Patriots to make a play for Revis.

Third, perhaps the decision of New England coach Bill Belichick to publicly cry foul about Welker’s hit on Talib was aimed at souring Talib on the possibility of signing with the Broncos.

Fourth, the Patriots never could have given Talib the contract he has received in Denver, not in the wake of the decision to give millions to tight end Aaron Hernandez months before he landed in jail while awaiting murder charges.  While Talib has been a model citizen since being traded from Tampa to New England in 2012, concerns linger regarding his temper and demeanor in the locker room and on the practice field.  Then there’s the lingering concern that Talib doesn’t show up in big games.

For the Broncos, it doesn’t matter.  They needed to go all in if they want to win a Super Bowl with Peyton Manning still on the team, and the only real chance to begin closing that 35-point gap with the Seahawks comes via the available free agents.  While Ward and Talib may not be Kam Chancellor and Richard Sherman, Ward and Talib were the best that Denver could currently do.

And if they can land DeMarcus Ware, the Broncos will be closer to simulating the devastating Seattle front seven.

And if the Broncos sign Vince Young, he can call it a Dream Team.

Actually, this team is less about fulfilling a dream and more about avoiding another February nightmare.

128 responses to “Talib deal shows Broncos are going all in to catch Seattle

  1. Why can’t the Patriots just open their freakin’ eyes and realize they have a tight window that they need to capitalize on? They’re never going to win another Super Bowl until they start signing top end players at key positions.

  2. Yeah that’s not going to help enough. Peyton Manning still has a weak arm, no offensive line and no runningback. Also your special teams are still pathetic.

  3. How is it the Broncos can sign Talib and maybe Demarcus Ware while still paying Manning $20 Million and the Texans lose players left and right and can’t afford to sign new players? How did Rick Smith keep his job? Would help if they could show Matt Schaub the exit ASAP.

  4. Heck of a deal for Talib. And his game can improve when his new buddy Wes shows him how he can avoid those type of nasty plays in the future. And good for Wes that TJ Ward is not in play for the Patriots to use in retaliation. Elway’s strategy of disarming the Patriots is indeed an interesting development.

  5. Do the Broncos have any cap space left to sign Ware? I looked and the source I used said they had 13 million in cap room, but that was before Talib and Ward, and Denver still needs to sign any draft picks.

  6. Holy hell that’s a lot of money for a guy that couldn’t finish a playoff game 2 years in a row. Good luck with that.

  7. Good luck to Talib. I am a Patriots fan and agree the Pats could not match that offer. I trust Bill to field a playoff caliber team, make the playoffs and be a threat to make the Super Bowl and win it. With the exception of the Green Bay Packers signing of Reggie White, no team has won a Super Bowl with free agent signings. I have to wonder about the depth of Denver’s roster and how they will respond to injuries.

  8. for the broncos to win a Super Bowl Peyton needs to pull an Eli card…
    defense isnt peytons problem.

  9. They better win now as Elway is mortgaging the future. Not a recipe for being “consistently competitive” at a high level. Elway will learn the hard way. And still, it ain’t good enough to beat the Hawks!!

  10. I’d say this signing is a somewhat desperate reach by John Elway to win next season at all costs because the physical tools that Manning has are fading quick.

    One only need look at his SB pick to Kam Chancellor and realize the arm strength just isn’t there any longer. And unfortunately the Broncos are positioned to win now and the window is closing quickly.

  11. Oh ward and talib could easily be just like chancellor and Sherman, just as some peds to the Broncos defensive training rooms and there ya go.

  12. Seattle will not make another sb appearance, book it, jolly Roger and his striped goons made it too obvious in the saints and niners games on their intentions for getting the Seahawks to the sb.

  13. Given the way Manning runs up the score and forces opposing offenses to throw the football, look for Talib to be in coverage 120% of what he was this year in an average game. That’s 20% more chance of injury for a guy who is injury prone. Given the non-division teams on the Broncos schedule in 2014 (Indy, Seattle, San Fran, New England, Arizona), Talib is in for some physical play this year.

  14. Yes sir!!! Let’s go Denver! And for anyone thinking that now there screwed after this year because DT, JT and von contracts are up we still have 18 million dollars in cap space and a win now QB who has already said he’d take a pay cut next year to bring those guys back! So Denver is set to win this year and the future lets go!

  15. Very interesting signing. Personally love it because when Talib is on his game he is no question a top 5 corner in this league. Of course, the controversy and concern for us Bronco fans is his primarily his durability. I think people need to give the guy a break on the off field stuff as he’s proven himself over the last couple years, which means more than it should in the NFL.

  16. How to completely Wreck a Franchise in less than 5 years: written by John Elway. Like this isn’t going to blow up in their face and set Denver back another decade. ..Too bad they don’t have a Quarterback who doesn’t choke in big games or they might actually have a shot at winning a Super Bowl. Ah well! That being said i think it’s fairly obvious John Elway has been smoking waaay too much sticky-icky-icky

  17. As if the hawks just threw all over them in the superbowl or something… Their offense got shut down so I’d be more worried about coming up with a different strategy in that regard next time they face the hawks.

  18. Broncos defense had been clearly upgraded, no denying. What about their offense? Lost moreno. Losing decker.
    Did you see the game? Peyton manning was shook the entire game. Terrified. Receivers were put in check.

    Stating the obvious.
    We’d LOVE to play Denver again. Hope we rematch

  19. Well written post. Biggest hurdle for Denver is dealing with the “yea, but can they not get blown out in the Super Bowl?” attitude from the fans and media week after week next season. No amount of wins or records will stop that. As the Pats know, Super Bowl or bust is a tough mountain to climb.

  20. 26 million guaranteed???
    Denver is selling its soul to the devil for a Super Bowl next year.
    They just signed Ward and Talib who are now both in the top 5 on the team in average salary.

    What happens next year, Denver? Here are some of your key 2015 free agents:
    D. Thomas, Julius Thomas, Welker, Knighton, Von Miller, Chris Harris.

    Where is the money gonna come from to pay those guys?

  21. When will teams learn that the defensive and offensive lines make the difference. The reason the legion of boom is successful is because of QB pressure. DB’s, WR and QB’s are only as good as their lines allow them to be.

  22. Shows that the Pats “way” is starting to backfire…they are becoming victims of their own hubris, and like victims of their own hubris, they don’t even realize it.

  23. The Seahawks don’t have a dynamic passing game. This whole article doesn’t make sense.

    The biggest story is Bill letting his window close by being cheap AGAIN. Add to the fact that he can’t draft a CB to save his life makes this even more of a head scratcher.

  24. it’s called having players under rookie contracts(i/e: demaryious) win now, screw the future!!!! now go get ware!!!!! and revis while you are at it!!!!!!!!! war broncos!!!!!!!!!!

  25. Broncos are going to fall flat on their faces in this attempt to by a Seahawks defense.

    And Talib is going to smoke himself out the league now that he’s in Denver were weed is legal.

  26. I know there are many jokes here but Denver didn’t mess around this off season. They got a decent hard hitting safety and in most people eye’s a top 5 CB along with getting back Von Miller/Wolfe. Not saying they will be like a NFC defensive powerhouse Seattle, 49ers or Panthers but there is no reason to think they can’t a top 10 defense.

  27. This was an awful signing. Broncos jumped the gun and should’ve waited for Revis to hit the market. Talib isn’t worthy of this contract. By the end of next season we’ll look back and say this was Elway’s first disastrous signing of his front office career.

  28. It’s not the signings that will make Denver a better team, it’s getting back the 5 defensive starters that were injured heading into the Super Bowl — Von Miller, Derek Wolfe, Kevin Vickerson, Chris Harris, and Rahim Moore. Throwing in Ward and Talib is just a bonus. No team can overcome the loss of 5 starters on one side of the ball like that.

  29. The Broncos will not sniff the Super Bowl next year. They have to play all four teams in the NFC West. They will lose them all.

  30. Hey Denver…. Get ready for Talib to have to “ice up son, ice up” quite a bit the next few years… dude has a glass hip… Enjoy!!!

  31. ariani1985 says: Mar 12, 2014 12:12 AM

    Seattle is old news, seriously not much to catch. Average defense, no o-line and stumpy receivers. Wow!

    Yeah, that’s why everyone is going after Seattle’s free agents! That average O line–which I’ll admit needs some improvement–just happened to help Seattle to a #8 ranking in overall offense last season, the stumpy receivers made plays when it counted, and that “average” defense . . . I don’t even need to address that one because everyone–including you–knows the truth.

    If you’re going to talk trash, at least do it in a way that doesn’t make you look like so ridiculously stupid! I mean, really? AVERAGE defense???? That’s funny!

  32. They can jump in, go all in and from the way Seattle beat them down Denver has a long, long way to go. Denver looked soft next to Seattle who has a whole team full of thumpers.

  33. Broncos had 27 million in cap space, before they cut Champ Bailey. 36 million after that. They aren’t done. This is Mannings last year, and welkers with the Broncos. Elway is loading up for one final shot at it for Manning. 28 million will come off the books for 2015 to sign Miller DT JT and Harris. Pass rusher next hopefully Allen over Ware. Draft a middle linebacker for gods sake.

  34. And in other news ted thompson signs the third string nt from the colts to a 3 yr 50.00 dollar contract and blames capers for everything

  35. Buying a Super Bowl doesn’t work in the NFL! What happens when Manning gets dropped and they have no QB go guide that team? Last year the football gods tried to show Manning it was time to stop. And how are the Broncos paying for Manning, Miller, Welker, Clady and now all these guys?! The “head horse” (elway) is gearing up for a huge face plant.

  36. goldbloodedindfw says: Mar 12, 2014 12:48 AM

    As if the hawks just threw all over them in the superbowl or something… Their offense got shut down so I’d be more worried about coming up with a different strategy in that regard next time they face the hawks.
    Seahawks offense got shut down? Hmmm, let’s see . . . 150 yards of offense in the first half for 13 points (2 FG and a TD). Not Seattle’s fault that Peyton kept giving the ball away. At the end of the first half–with a pick-6 and a safety to add on to the 13 offensive points–Seattle was up 22-0. Harvin comes out on the second half kickoff and returns one for a TD. Now it’s 29-0. After another Denver turnover, Seattle’s offense goes another 58 yards for a score. It’s now 36-0. After Denver scores its lone TD, Seattle goes 65 yards for another score.

    So, scoring drives of 51, 58, 37, 58, and 65 yards for a total of 27 offensive points. John Ryan didn’t have to come out to punt until midway through the 3rd quarter. Wilson had 206 passing with 2 TDs and Seattle’s offense put up 135 rushing.

    By 12 seconds into the 3rd quarter, the game was over. Seattle’s offense didn’t need to score any more points, but still managed to put together 58-yard and 65 yard drives. Yeah, that’s really shutting down Seattle’s offense alright!

    Shutting down an offense is not about keeping them from gaining yards. It’s about keeping an offense from scoring. Being that only 16 of Seattle’s 48 points came from D or ST plays, I think we can safely say that you assessment of the game is about as ridiculous as your attempt to talk trash.

  37. scmems07 says:
    Mar 12, 2014 12:31 AM
    Seattle will not make another sb appearance, book it, jolly Roger and his striped goons made it too obvious in the saints and niners games on their intentions for getting the Seahawks to the sb.


    You sound SAD. Bitter too!

  38. Last time Denver violated salary cap rules to win a pair of Super Bowls, it only cost them a 3rd round pick. Small price to pay…..

  39. Von Miller, Ware, Phillips, Knighton, Talib, Ward a couple of decent inside LB’s and they’ll have a very good defense. Remember their defense was banged up last year and they had money invested in Champ Bailey who was clearly passed his prime.

    My concern is now that their offense will falter. But what I’d do if I was Denver is spend all up on defense and O line. What you are then doing is giving your QB a chance to stay upright, keep in the game even if you aren’t scoring much and work out enough offense to win.

    When your QB is P. Manning that’s not a bad plan.

  40. Talib signing with the Broncos is proof that Belechik ripped Welker’s hit on Talib so that Talib would not sign with Denver? That’s not even conjecture, it’s just lazy writing.

  41. Look, not one of those guys mentioned, not Talib, not Ware, not Welker, NONE OF THEM, could start for the Seahawks. The gap isn’t 3-4 players, it’s more like 30 if you count special teams, and I’m including the Hall of Fame QB.

    Other teams have to keep adding and hope we start losing players, otherwise we’re going to stay at the top of the NFL heap for a long time to come. It’s simple numbers.

  42. bspurloc says:
    Mar 12, 2014 12:21 AM
    for the broncos to win a Super Bowl Peyton needs to pull an Eli card…
    defense isnt peytons problem.

    Eli has never won a playoff game when his defense has given up more than 20 points. So, since that is the case, they ARE trying to pull the “Eli card”… which is rely on a top defense and have your QB put up about 20 points and win super bowls.

  43. Talk about desperation, signing this turd.

    Remember, the only times the Bronco’s won the Super Bowl, they circumvented the salary cap.

  44. So if the Broncos had had TJ Ward and Talib in the Super Bowl, how many points would they have lost by? I’m going to guess the same amount.

    The Seahawks didn’t just manhandle Denver with talent, they did it as a TEAM, with home-grown talent that has played together for two or three seasons. Denver may be trying to emulate Seattle with its checkbook, but it won’t yield the same results.

  45. I can’t wait for the NFL draft so we can see how the deepest team in the league, minus a few free agency hits, with replacements already on the roster, completely transitions it’s offense around Russell Wilson, as opposed to Marshawn Lynch.

    The Seahawks aren’t afraid of anybody.

  46. “Third, perhaps the decision of New England coach Bill Belichick to publicly cry foul about Welker’s hit on Talib was aimed at souring Talib on the possibility of signing with the Broncos”

    Bit of a stretch hahaha.

  47. Well, if the Broncos don’t have enough cap space to pay all these guys is there some way they can defer the money somehow? You know, pay them later?

  48. “Good luck to Talib. I am a Patriots fan and agree the Pats could not match that offer. I trust Bill to field a playoff caliber team, make the playoffs and be a threat to make the Super Bowl and win it. With the exception of the Green Bay Packers signing of Reggie White, no team has won a Super Bowl with free agent signings. I have to wonder about the depth of Denver’s roster and how they will respond to injuries.”
    Deion Sanders got the niners to a SB in 94.

  49. This move doesn’t do anything! Sorry to bash you Broncos fans but I watched Talib to much over his career being a die hard Bucs fan! The man can’t guard speedsters! This move doesn’t make you the super bowl favorites at all. All it did was cut the margin of defeat in that SB down by ten points

  50. Given his injury history, that’s a lot of money. Another big risk by Denver. I do like that they are rolling the dice, though.

  51. The Broncos lost the Superbowl because the Seahawks completely dismantled and exposed Denver’s offense. Their defense actually held up pretty well until Manning’s pick-six. I don’t see how overpaying this guy will make a difference.

  52. Ultimate collection of dudes who kill the regular season, flop in the post season. Better win this year ’cause you got ten years in the basement coming up.

  53. Arrogant Pats fans and arrogant Pats organization continue to fail with their “Belichick is a genius – The Patriot Way” fraud.

    The arrogance is defined by the “we can plug anyone in and Saint Bill will coach them up”…

    Might work for winning the weakest division in football – but when they have to play legitimately good teams….they fail as usual.

    Wonder how they would do in the NFC West?

    9-7? 8-8?

  54. Talib thrived under the strict discipline of Bill, john fox is not exactly known for that. Actually he’s known as the opposite, a true players coach. Add that to the legal Mary, and prior injury issues and I don’t think this is a very good signing for the broncos. It’s not sour grapes, I didn’t think the pats should have broken the bank for him, much like big rob he’s always injured when it counts the most. I hope he does well.

  55. I still in awe that Bill had the foresight to know Denver would go after Talib, 2 months before it happened.

  56. I have heard for years from Patriots fans (I am one) that Irsay and now Elway giving Manning all of that money will eventually come back to bite them as they would be forced to make tough cuts. It’s a bit ironic that Irsay took Vinatieri and now Elway has taken Welker and Talib. By the time this might catch up with Elway, Tom Brady will be retired. This does the Patriots no good.

  57. “Broncos will win in Seattle next year, then win in AZ for the SB…#7 always wins

    Except when he doesn’t, and ends up in some of the lost lopsided Super Bowl losses in history.

  58. People talking about how they are going to be in salary cap trouble in a few years are morons. Who cares about salary cap trouble in 3-4 years? Manning will be done by then & they will be rebuilding anyway. They have to try to win now while they still have Manning. If you want to say that Talib isn’t worth that much, then fine. I would be inclined to agree. But the strategy is sound. And everyone knows the salary cap can be manipulated anyway. They can always restructure deals to provide cap room. Good teams do it all the time.

    With that said, I don’t think this puts them over the top. But it does keep them as the favorite in the AFC.

  59. Broncos go out and win a title Manning possibly retires and the Broncos have 20 million to spend so they are not mortgaging the future. Broncos had multiple injuries on the offensive line also and they will be back and healthy. Need a pass rusher and speed at the LB spot and they should be just fine. Manning can take them as far as the AFC title game by himself. Don’t be jealous all you haters make me laugh.

  60. The biggest free agent acquisition the Seahawks made last year didn’t even play 80% of the season, and they were still head and shoulders above the Broncos. It sounds to me like the Broncs are loading up to lose late in the season again.

  61. There was a guy somewhere up that that mentioned Elway mortgaging the future for the now. I have to agree. All this money obviously isn’t being put on this years or next years cap, but it’s still all got to go somewhere. While the increasing cap, if it continues at this years rate or close to it, will certainly help, you still gotta wonder where the Broncos are going to be in 3-4 years with regards to cap hell.

    If it works, Elway’s a “genius” and that means he’ll be given the time to get himself out of the problem he boxed himself into. If it doesn’t he’ll just be the guy that got Peyton Manning on his team but couldn’t do anything with him.

  62. Talib, legalized weed and $26M guaranteed. Sounds great, Broncos.
    Now you’re in position to lose by just 24 to the Seattle.
    And you might wanna keep an eye on your new CB’s hip, BTW.

  63. Too bad they are also behind the 49ers, who would have also beaten them unmercifully as well. (See 55-10). Now they need is a qb.

  64. Didn’t the Broncos loose DRC? He is better the Talib. TJ ward is an upgrade but they have no wiggle room in the cap with these signing.

  65. Lot of flopsweat in Denver right now. They know Manning can’t carry a team, so the only answer is to weaken the rest of the AFC by buying up players on other teams. 43-8!

  66. I guess Elway is thinking that manning and his offense didn’t really play bad in the SB and it was all defenses fault..??

  67. LOL! I just love how whenever the Pats release one of their “elite” players another team (often Peyton’s team) is always so quick to snatch him up and overpay him. What they don’t seem to realize is that most of these players only thrive because of Belichick. That’s the secret of the Patriot Way – most of these players only thrive because they were coached by Belichick and Tom Brady was their team leader. Tom Brady is the ultimate player leader in the NFL. Peyton is the ultimate stats guy but Brady is the ultimate team leader who usually gets the job done (unless he’s got no one to throw to).

  68. There go the Broncos picking up New England’s sloppy seconds. Talib has a degenerative HIP ISSUE. A bad hip is impossible to repair. He has never played a FULL season..ie Danny Amendola.
    I hate the Broncos but have never seen a fan base as annoying as Seattle’s. They finally win something and all of a sudden they are a dynasty. When San Francisco knocks them out of the playoffs in 2014 it will be the last we hear from those coffee custies in the North West (Kanye anyone?) Sherman, Wilson and Thomas are on the market next season and every good team is ravaged of it’s top players. Sherman has talked himself into a giant payday, we will all see how over rated he is without two All Pro Safties, making him look good. Once away from their new ::cough:: ::cough:: “workout” routine, as evidenced by 7 suspensions in a year, the hawks fans will see what we all already know. Steroids and a great system got this team where they are. The Seahawks will go back into mediocrity and the world will regain its balance. That said Talib will not be on the field for the AFC Championship game, as usual and the Broncos will not face San Francisco in Arizona 2015. Revis and new England will

  69. Wow. All of you experts figured Seattle out. Pete only knows how to coach this group and only for 4 years. The perceived depth of Seattle was all smoke (he-he) and mirrors. We all know the experts gave Seattle an “F” grade in theirs drafts. Therefore, Seattle must be cheating and the NFL is rigged.
    This is the only way that Seattle could beat the Broncos who were clearly the “Faster, Stronger and Bigger” team. See now Denver is using Seattles mantra too. Like the rest of the league with “competition” and “1-0” every week.
    Everyone knows that R. Wilson isn’t that good. Even if he holds the NFL records for most wins, only Qb to have a 100+ passer rating and numerous others in his first two years. He sux. As for Seattles defense, just because the had the best scoring D for 2 years in a row, they aren’t that good.
    Did I cover all of you bs? Choke on it haters

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