As the Denver Broncos‘ playoff hopes evaporate, the team must now prepare for one of its most critical offseasons in franchise history. Change is expected at the ownership level and quarterback, with the possibility of big names being added to fill both positions.
When the Broncos are put up for sale, likely going for an NFL record, Hall of Fame quarterback Peyton Manning could be involved with the franchise under new leadership. It will be a fitting reunion for the legend who joined Denver in 2012, one of the biggest quarterback carousel moves in NFL history.
Whether or not Manning joins the organization, general manager George Paton knows he must find a franchise quarterback. While the Broncos played well in 2021, they were often held back by an offense limited by Teddy Bridgewater‘s shortcomings and Drew Lock’s bad decision-making.
But the upcoming NFL offseason could change everything. A year after missing out on an Aaron Rodgers trade, Denver could be involved in bidding wars for multiple star quarterbacks. With plenty of cap space and draft picks, one NFL insider even believes a league-altering scenario should be explored.
NBC Sports’ Peter King suggested the Broncos make two moves to instantly help them become a Super Bowl contender in 2022. First, they sign All-Pro wide receiver Davante Adams to a contract that will make him one of the highest-paid players at his position. With Adams on board, King then says Denver could push to acquire Rodgers.
- Green Bay Packers acquire: Jerry Jeudy, DEN’s 2022 first- and fourth-round picks, DEN 2023 first-round pick
- Denver Broncos acquire: Aaron Rodgers
There is certainly plenty of logic behind the idea. Rodgers wanted to be traded to the Broncos this past offseason, only returning to Green Bay when general manager Brian Gutekunst refused to move him. But if the Packers fall short of the Super Bowl, the three-time NFL MVP may ask for a trade this spring.
While things are better between the two sides right now, that could change. Green Bay is projected to be $40-plus million over the 2022 salary cap, giving them no room to sign Adams. The 29-year-old isn’t willing to take a discount and Denver could offer the kind of contract that piques his interest. It would be even better for the Broncos if they hire Nathaniel Hackett to replace Vic Fangio.
If Adams leaves Green Bay, there’s little chance Rodgers returns. At that point, he’d demand a trade and the Packers already promised him he would have a strong input in his next landing spot. Once he is cleared to seek a trade, his desire to play in Denver would be even stronger if it meant reuniting with Adams.
This certainly isn’t the likeliest scenario, but it’s at least plausible. If the Denver Broncos found a way to pull it off, they’d instantly become one of the best NFL teams in 2022.