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Broncos will remain patient in NFL free agency

John Elway, Broncos

In an offseason that has so far been defined by huge moves, the Denver Broncos, according to John Elway, the team’s general manager and president of football operations, are remaining patient. According to James Palmer of the NFL Network, Elway told him the prices on players are too high for them, and they’ll wait to see how things end up.

The team’s first signing of the offseason was Kareem Jackson, a soon-to-be 31-year-old cornerback from the Houston Texans. A  three-year, $33 million deal is what it took to pair him with cornerback Chris Harris Jr, in new head coach and former Chicago Bears defensive coordinator Vic Fangio’s scheme. Jackson finished among the top-ranked cornerbacks in 2018.

They also added right tackle Ja’Wuan James, who was one of the top linemen in this year’s free agent class. Denver made James the highest paid right tackle in the league with a four-year $52 million contract. The Broncos now have the right side of the line locked down, important as last season’s right tackle, Jared Veldheer, is a free agent himself.

Elway’s biggest moves of the offseason so far have been trades. On February 13, the Baltimore Ravens agreed to trade quarterback Joe Flacco to the Denver Broncos in exchange for their fourth-round pick in this year’s draft. Baltimore officially moved on to second-year quarterback Lamar Jackson.

With Flacco on the roster, Elway had no more use for quarterback Case Keenum, who he had just signed to a two-year, $36 million contract last offseason. Elway was able to unload Keenum onto the Washington Redskins for a sixth-round pick by throwing in a seventh rounder of their own. Washington had traded for quarterback Alex Smith last offseason, but a compound and spiral fracture to his tibia and fibula in his right leg may have ended Smith’s career.