As the NFL free agency edges closer, there might be a strong chance that the Broncos may move on from a key player in their defense, outside linebacker DeMarcus Ware. According to Jeff Legwold of ESPN, Ware could wind up being a salary cap casualty.
The Super Bowl champions have some of the biggest issues in the league at present; quarterback Peyton Manning may retire and Brock Osweiler is a free agent. There is also an impending overhaul in the team's defense as Von Miller, Malik Jackson, Brandon Marshall and Danny Trevathan are free agents and they only have one franchise tag. Now, the Broncos may have to add Ware to that list.
In a recent report, Legwold broke down Denver's offseason priorities and provided this insight: "Ware did miss five games with a back injury this past season with plenty of back/neck troubles previously in his career. His $11.67 million cap figure will likely be looked to for some adjustment. So, if he chooses to retire or does not want to re-work the deal at least somewhat, there is a chance he would not remain."
The 33-year-old Ware did deliver outstanding performance in the playoffs as he produced 3.5 sacks in only three games. However, what is fueling speculation about his possible parting ways with the club is his health. Furthermore, the Broncos also have defensive tackle Malik Jackson as well as fellow linebacker Danny Trevathan to consider once free agency hits.
In other Broncos roster updates, linebacker Von Miller is optimistic that the defending champions will offer him a deal soon after he becomes a free agent and that they will use their franchise tag on him should the sides are unable to reach a contract agreement. In the same ESPN report, the 26-year-old player is confident that regardless of the franchise tag, he and the Broncos will end up agreeing to a long-term deal because of his relationship with John Elway.
Elway is the Broncos' the executive vice president of football operations and general manager. "I put in all the work I can possibly do. If I was with any other organization, if I was with any other team, maybe I'd be worried about everything, but I've got John Elway," Miller told ESPN. "He's played, he's had experience with this whole process. I feel comfortable. Me and John's relationship is great. He was there when I was going through stuff and he never wavered. I feel like we won't waver now either."
During Denver's 24-10 win over Carolina in the Super Bowl 50, Miller delivered 2.5 sacks and two forced fumbles, including one that ended up with the Broncos scoring a defensive touchdown after he grabbed the ball from Panthers quarterback Cam Newton.