The Denver Broncos are currently right up against the cap, a situation that is compounded by the long term contract that the team will eventually sign LB Von Miller to. The team has been able to sign three free agents who all profile as starters right now as well as trade for a veteran QB who could also turn out to be a starter.
The obvious move here for starters is to trade or cut Ryan Clady. Clady is scheduled to count $10.1 million against the cap this season. If the Broncos cannot find a trade partner for Clady, who has no shortage of interest around the league, the team will wait until after June 1st to cut the left tackle. A pre June 1st cut would save the team $8.9 million with a $1.2 million dead money charge. A post June 1st cut would save the team $9.5 million while costing $600,000 in dead money.
The second move that was recently laid out by ESPN Insider Field Yates, would have Denver restructure the contract of Demaryius Thomas. Denver can create up to $9.18 million in cap space if Denver were to reduce Thomas’ base salary down to the minimum of $760,000 for 2016. Thomas would still receive all the money he is scheduled to make in this scenario.
With these two moves, Denver can create up to $19.2 million in space. The Broncos cap situation is not nearly as dire as perception would have you believe.
So why hasn't Denver done this yet? Simple, they don't have to. Regardless of the cap situation, the Broncos are not paying Colin Kaepernick anymore than what they value him at, meaning the cap situation is not influencing the Broncos approach to negotiations. The team can hold onto LT Ryan Clady for two months looking for trade compensation before releasing him.
If John Elway hasn't already proven this, it is clear that he will exercise patience and walk away from any negotiations if it's not at his price.
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