NFL Insider says Broncos are likely to franchise tag Justin Simmons again
NFL Insider Jason La Canfora reported Tuesday that Broncos safety Justin Simmons should be franchised tagged “in a few weeks”.
New Broncos general manager George Paton does not want to start his regime watching one of the Broncos best players walk out, so a franchise tag on Simmons could be on the horizon. Denver paid Simmons $11.4M a year ago on the franchise tag and sources told La Canfora the team is “quite likely to apply it again in 2021 as a means to trying to secure a long-term deal with the playmaker”.
Simmons appeared in 74 games with 64 starts and has notched 385 tackles (288 solo), 11 tackles for a loss, 37 pass break-ups, and 16 interceptions since the Broncos drafted him in the third-round of the 2016 draft.
If the Broncos franchised tagged Simmons, he would make at least $13.73 million in 2021.
Per 9News Broncos Insider Mike Klis, a team option window on the financial guarantee for Von Miller and Kareem Jackson is underway and concludes March 16, or the day before free agency officially begins. Jackson has a $1.5 million option guarantee on his $10 million salary in 2021.
So how much are the Broncos willing to spend on the safety duo?
Jackson signed a three-year, $33 million contract and is set to make $11 million in 2021, while Simmons could make more than his slotted $13.7 million if the Broncos can reach an agreement on an extension.
According to NFL Insider Adam Schefter, the upcoming season cap is projected to drop to between $180-181 million.
Though the NFL’s salary cap is not expected to be officially set until next month, league sources believe it will be roughly $180-$181 million. Throughout the past season, many expected it to be around $175 million, but it now is projected to come in slightly higher, per sources.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) February 7, 2021
The new league year begins on March 17 and La Canfora reported that by tagging Simmons, the Broncos will have until July 15 to reach a contract extension with the free-agent safety.