Jan 11, 2015; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Broncos wide receiver Demaryius Thomas (88) after their loss to the Indianapolis Colts in the 2014 AFC Divisional playoff football game at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. The Colts won 24-13. Mandatory Credit: Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports
After the Denver Broncos let tight end Julius Thomas walk for mega money from the Jacksonville Jaguars during 2015 NFL Free Agency, the attention turned to their contract negotiations with now the only star Thomas on the team’s offence in Demaryius Thomas and his future in Colorado. John Elway needing to pay up to keep a player who has seen his stock rise thanks to his experiences with Peyton Manning over the past three seasons in Denver.
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Putting up big numbers as Denver’s top target at receiver, it was expected that Thomas was going to be commanding big money after being slapped with the franchise tag. Denver hoping to lock up their man before he hits the open market after another season where he is expected to put up big numbers once again even if Manning is on the slightest of downturns in an attempt to secure their star before he gets offered an insane deal to drive up his value from a cap loaded team.
According to reports the Broncos are going to make their offer as they look to lock up Thomas before their 2015 Training Camp. Bronocs insider Mike Klis reporting that Elway and the Broncos front office are prepared to make Thomas a deal in the $12 million range. Matching what he is making on his franchise tag deal while putting him in the ranks of the second highest paid at his position if he does sign the deal, which could be below market value considering what teams might pay for him on the open market.
"With a contract deadline now down to less than 48 hours, the Broncos and Thomas’ agent, Todd France, have recently exchanged proposals, according to multiple NFL sources.The Broncos’ offer is well north of Mike Wallace’ deal, according to sources. Minnesota’s Wallace is currently the league’s second-highest paid receiver with a five-year deal that averages $12 million a year and includes $30 million in guarantees.The highest-paid receiver is Detroit’s Calvin Johnson, who is making better than $16.2 million a year. Contrary to reports, Thomas is not seeking Calvin Johnson money. Thomas is seeking a deal that is greater than Johnson’s contract, according to sources.After placing a one-year, $12.82 million franchise-tag tender on Thomas back on March 2, the Broncos and the three-time Pro Bowler have until 2 p.m. Wednesday to reach a multiyear deal. If an agreement is not reached, Thomas would have to play the 2015 season on a one-year deal.Thomas may sit out the early portion of training camp to protest his one-year deal, although it’s also possible the Broncos may sweeten the current $12.82 million tender."
The Broncos are extremely smart to try to lock in Thomas now, but there is a sense that the receiver could get even more than $12 million in 2016 Free Agency if he was willing to leave the Broncos. Teams like the Raiders and other cap heavy teams always interested in parlaying their space under the cap number into a bid on a superstar player. Thomas fits that bill and although $12 million is a fair price, knowing he could potentially could get more might but a halt into negotiations as they reach their deadline this week. It is a situation to monitor as the Raiders division rivals look to secure arguably their most important offensive player who isn’t Peyton Manning.