Hawaii boys sign with Broncos
By Danny Cup Choy
Thursday, July 25 2002
Ashley Lelie has signed with the Denver Broncos, making the former University of Hawaii star a very rich man. ESPN.com has reported that Lelie signed a 5-year deal worth $7.1 million. More importantly, Lelie received a 3.3 million dollar signing bonus, which is guaranteed money. An interesting component to Lelie's contract is it has an option for a sixth year, but if the wide receiver reaches certain incentives, he can void the contract back to a five-year deal.
This announcement means that Lelie will enter the Denver camp on time, which is always important for NFL rookies. He will be competing for time as Denver's third wide receiver, and eventually look to take over for all-pro's Rod Smith and Ed McCaffrey.
In related news, former Hawaii standout Jason Elam, Denver's designated franchise player, signed a one-year deal for $1.465 million. Elam hopes that this will lead to a long-term deal with the Broncos in the future, but it will allow Elam to listen to offers from other team's after this season.
"This removes the biggest impediment (to a long-term contract), and they can't use it as a negotiating tool anymore," agent Jack Reale told ESPN.com. "Now there is no reason that we should not negotiate an appropriate contract for a player of Jason's credentials. But ultimately, it's up to them, so we'll see where it goes from here."