KUSA—A healthy Derek Wolfe would help the Broncos improve in 2018.
Wolfe says he’s undoubtedly healthy after Foraminotomy surgery and stem-cell treatment addressed the neck injury and complications that forced him to miss a combined seven games the past two years. But there is some question whether he will be a Bronco this year because of financial concerns.
“A guy of my caliber is making $12 million to $15 million a year,’’ Wolfe said in an interview with 9News this week. “And I make $8 million a year. I think they’re getting a pretty good deal with me.
“But if they want to let me go, this is business. I’m not going to have any hard feelings. I love this team. I love this city. This is where I’m going to live. I’m going to live here the rest of my life no matter what.’’
Wolfe, though, may not be as vulnerable to leaving Denver’s roster as other standouts making good money. It’s not just a relatively high salary that makes an NFL player susceptible to the trading block. It’s good money and having a younger alternative behind him.
Wolfe does not have a young player behind him who is ready to play at his caliber, at least not until the Broncos’ past two, second-round picks Adam Gotsis and DeMarcus Walker further develop.
The two Broncos more frequently mentioned as possibly moving on -- cornerback Aqib Talib and running back C.J. Anderson – are backed up by young players who appear ready for more playing time.
Bradley Roby was not only the Broncos’ No. 3 cornerback the past four seasons, his salary is about to jump from $1.018 million to $8.526 million.
At running back, Devontae Booker and De’Angelo Henderson flashed promise in 2017 and the Broncos would like to draft another running back this year.
Even relatively inexpensive quarterback Trevor Siemian could be moved in part because the Broncos may not be ready to give up on former first-round pick Paxton Lynch.
What’s certain is the Broncos can’t stay with status quo following a 5-11 season. No doubt, the team will confront difficult decisions with some of their better players.
“I think every team does,’’ said Broncos head coach Vance Joseph. “Our goal this offseason is to keep the best players we can and find the right players for our football team. I think every team has those same issues every offseason. It’s no different here.’’