The $235 million in offseason spending the Broncos committed in free agency were an indication that newly implemented head coach Sean Payton is not looking to rebuild, but instead looking to win now in 2023, according to Arrowhead Pride’s Kramer Sansone.
“Now led by Sean Payton, the Broncos have already made big moves this offseason,” Sansone prefaced before saying, “Payton’s offseason to date has made it seem like he is hoping to win in 2023 rather than rebuild.”
To Kramer, Payton’s work revamping the offensive line, and, in turn, the running game, made the first week of free agency a major win for Denver.
“Payton had a great first week of free agency by overhauling the entire offensive line and solidifying a blueprint for a running game,” Kramer said. “Mike McGlinchey helped run block for a run-first team in the San Francisco 49ers, and Ben Powers was one of the better run blockers for the Baltimore Ravens last season.”
Kramer gave a shoutout to Samaje Perine, who signed a two-year, $7.5 million contract with a $3 million signing bonus.
“One of the more underrated signings for the Broncos was adding former Bengals running back Samaje Perine,” Kramer wrote. “Perine backed up Joe Mixon last season — and when Mixon went down with a concussion, Perine had great production value on the field. Perine is an exclusive back and fits the Broncos’ new offense.”
Jerry Jeudy’s Broncos Tenure ‘Might Be in Jeopardy’
Kramer believes Broncos wideout Jerry Jeudy’s time in the Mile High City could be coming to an end during the 2023 offseason, outlining where things stand for the 23-year-old former Alabama receiver.
“The trade rumors around Broncos camp regarding wide receiver Jerry Jeudy are running wild,” Kramer wrote. “Jeudy was the 15th overall pick in the 2020 draft, and his tenure in Denver might be in jeopardy. Rumors had been tied to the Cleveland Browns before they traded for former New York Jets wide receiver Elijah Moore on Wednesday. The other team reportedly involved is the New England Patriots.”
The Arrowhead Pride writer believes Jeudy’s fate is in the hands of Payton.
“We might see a trade happen if Jeudy isn’t in Payton’s plans,” Kramer wrote.
Sean Payton Could Move on From Russell Wilson
To illustrate just how much of a win now mindset Payton has, the first-year Broncos head coach is reportedly giving Russell Wilson a short-leash — even considering benching the quarterback in 2023 despite his $245 million extension given to him on September 1 that features $165 million guaranteed.
“I don’t think [Sean] Payton likes Russ,” NBC Sports’ Matthew Berry said. “He’s got one year to prove himself or Payton will move on.”
Berry believes the Broncos would simply sit Wilson out in 2023 before cutting him in 2024. “There’s no way Denver can cut him this year, but next year, while the dead cap hit would certainly be bad, it could be spread out over two years and wouldn’t be franchise crippling,” Berry said.