We knew going into this offseason that the Denver Broncos salary cap war chest was going to be more flush than it's been in recent years. And every year, the league salary cap gets raised.
The NFL and NFLPA announced that the base salary cap for 2017 will be $167 million. The Broncos have a little more than $7 million in cap space to rollover — the amount they didn't use last year — giving them a total salary cap of $174,243,248.
Over The Cap has the Broncos at $42,064,799 in cap space, heading into free agency — the 10th most in the NFL.
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GM John Elway will have the capital to spend in free agency, and fill the roster holes that plagued the Broncos in 2017. The offensive line hole grew when the team passed on picking up left tackle Russell Okung's option.
In order to have the prerogative of staying disciplined and true to the 'Best Player Available' approach in the Draft, the Broncos will have to make some acquisitions on the free agent market. They need three starters on the O-line, a defensive end, a nose tackle, and possibly an inside linebacker to start next to Brandon Marshall.
And if Tony Romo becomes available as a free agent, the Broncos will have to earmark at least $10 million to bring him to the Mile High City. Elway is known for making a splash in free agency, but this will be just the second time since 2012 that he'll have to do it without his best recruiting tool — Peyton Manning.
In 2016, the Broncos were relatively quiet in free agency, losing more talent than they acquired. That's why the NFL granted them four compensatory picks in the upcoming Draft — a third round, a fifth round and two seventh round picks.
Expect John Elway to be active when the bell rings on March 9 and the new league year begins.
Chad Jensen is the Publisher of Mile High Huddle. You can find him on Twitter @ChadNJensen.