ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — Because Graham Glasgow’s list of admirable characteristics includes intelligence and humility, he understood his precarious predicament.
Here was a starting right guard, a seven-year veteran coming off a season-ending injury to his lower left leg, due to make a lot of money with two younger and less expensive players behind him.
“I understand how the business works,’’ Glasgow said Tuesday in a phone interview with 9NEWS.
All that, and that’s not even including the irregular heartbeat issue he dealt with early last season before his leg fracture. After making $23.37 million in his previous two seasons with the Broncos, Glasgow was due to make $8.7 million in 2022. Of that, $3.1 million was guaranteed against injury, which kicked in when he suffered a Maisonneuve, or spiral, fracture to his left tibia on the final play of the first half in the Broncos’ 30-16 week 9 win at Dallas. The fracture also created some ligament damage to his ankle so his recovery is expected to last through the offseason.
He decided to stay in his Denver-area home with his wife and newborn daughter and rehab here. Glasgow agreed to a 2022 payout reduction from $8.7 million in 2022 to the $3.1 million guarantee with a chance to make another $1.4 million back if he plays 90 percent of the snaps. The play-time incentive ladder: $250,000 for 50 percent of the snaps; $500,000 for 60 percent of the snaps; $1 million for 70 percent; $1.2 million for 80 percent and $1.4 million for 90 percent.
The final year of his four-year contract, which is to pay him a non-guaranteed $11 million in 2023, remains intact.
To reach his 2022 play-time incentives, Glasgow will likely have to beat out Quinn Meinerz, the third-round rookie who replaced him at right guard the final eight games, or Netane Muti, who has four starts through his first two seasons. But Glasgow didn’t become an established NFL starting offensive lineman by backing off from competition.
“When it came down to go somewhere else or stay here, I’d rather stay here,’’ he said.
The Broncos didn’t want to lose Glasgow either. He’s a solid veteran, strong leader and a positive influence for the offensive line room. Plus he can still play. For Glasgow, saying no to the restructure idea would have meant shopping his talent on the free agent. He preferred to stay in Denver.
“Yeah I did, that’s No. 1,’’ Glasgow said. “It comes down to the fact that just when I felt I was starting to play well I wound up getting hurt. I had a lot of (stuff) I had to deal with this year so in some regard I kind of expected it. I just wanted to make sure I could be part of the team and play here.”
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