A lot has been made about the job that the Denver Broncos front office has done so far. Given the circumstances and what was available, so far I am very pleased with what has happened. Here are a few of my favorite free agent pickups so far and why.
Brian Dawkins – Yes, he is old…that seems to be all anyone can say about it. Denver did not sign Dawkins for a long-term solution. Denver needed a guy that can provide leadership to what will shape up to be a young and completely revamped defense.
Dawkins can provide the kind of leadership on and off the field to both rookies and veterans of this team, not to mention he can still play. This reminds me of the John Lunch signing so much it is not funny, but this seems like a BETTER deal for Denver than that. I cannot wait to see Dawkins in Bronco Orange, laying people out and firing up the defense.
Jabar Gaffney – We all knew coach McDaniels would make Denver into the Patriots West…and honestly who cares? If we are going to imitate someone…may as well be a winner right? The Gaffney pickup really strengthens the receiving corps, and that was my opinion BEFORE the Brandon Marshall drama.
With Brandon likely to miss a large part of the season next year (my money is on 8 games…hope I am wrong) Denver needs some solid players at the position to compliment Eddie Royal and Brandon Stokely. McDaniels is going to run a lot of 3 receiver sets so I can see Gaffney being a significant contributor with or without Marshall. He knows the system, has the experience and the talent to make an immediate impact and provide some solid veteran leadership to the younger guys.
Ronald Fields – I might catch some flack for this, but I think Fields might be the best pickup for the Broncos after Dawkins. He is not flashy or terribly big but at 6′2″ and 315 he is just what the Doctor ordered to start rebuilding the Denver front 7 into a solid 3-4 system. I really think that Fields and Peterson are going to be a very valuable combination of players for the Denver line this year and I am excited to see it develop and grow.
The funny thing is that with the Haynesworth (ridiculous) contract and so many others that were paid well, and sometimes overpaid (I am looking at you Domonique Foxworth) there was a lot of buzz going into the free agency period for Denver. It certainly looked like the front office was going to make some waves with as many people as they let go. In my opinion they have been very smart and calculated so far instead of being tempted into a spending spree. The players they picked up will help the team this year and most importantly help the young players Denver drafts for the future.
Now all we have left is the draft, here is hoping the new regime handles it as well as they have free agency so far.
I posted this in my weekly column at BroncoMadness.com