Asked about Tony Romo, Denver Broncos’ president Joe Ellis deflected with Hall of Fame-caliber poise.
“I’ll leave that to John,’’ Ellis said Wednesday in reference to his general manager John Elway. “I don’t know what John’s plans are specifically. I make a point of not asking him because then I would know and I’d have to tell you right now … It will be interesting to see what we do. I’m sure John has a plan and he’s ready to execute it.’’
Ellis met with 9News before he was elected into the Denver & Colorado Tourism Hall of Fame at the Colorado Convention Center. He has sat on the Visit Denver board for more than 16 years and is beginning his 23rd season with the Broncos, seventh as team president.
Like Pat Bowlen, the team owner he serves, Ellis doesn’t meddle in football operations other than talk over the financial considerations with Elway. Romo, the Dallas quarterback who won’t come cheap, is hardly the only prize on the Broncos’ free-agent wish list. The Broncos have roughly $35 million in cap space entering free agency, and more importantly, they have $35 million in cash, if not a tad more, to spend.
“We’re in good shape,’’ Ellis said on the eve of NFL free agency. “It’s never been and never will be an excuse. We’re going to be aggressive I think. John has always been very smart looking at the value of each player, weighing that and determining that as it pertains whether we ultimately sign. We’re not going to take any reckless chances and I don’t expect him to do that but I’m sure he’s going to be aggressive tomorrow and for several days after.
“There’s kind of a rush in free agency and then things settle down and you often get value later on so we’ll see what comes out of this.’’
Elway and the Broncos expressed interest in Arizona free agent defensive end Calais Campbell but he reportedly will sign with Jacksonville on Thursday, the first day of NFL free agency. The Jaguars have more than twice the salary cap room than Denver so they had the wherewithal to outbid their competition for the former Denver South High School star.
And so it goes. The Broncos will move on. Their first chance to improve their team that finished 9-7 and out of the playoffs last year is 2 p.m. Thursday, when the 2017 league season officially commences.
“I think there’s some things in order, we’ll see how it all shakes out,’’ Ellis said. “I’m excited. It’s a chance to improve your team. That’s the goal and I’m sure we’ll accomplish some of that. Still got to play the games on the field, though.’’