It seemed like a foregone conclusion that Brock Osweiler would take over the Denver Broncos’ starting quarterback job after the announcement of Peyton Manning’s retirement. However, Osweiler elected to sign a 4-year, $72 million deal with the Houston Texans yesterday. Bleacher Report NFL writer Jason Cole joined The Jim Rome Show on Thursday and explained exactly why Osweiler left Denver.
“Brock lost a little bit of confidence in them late in the season, when he got pulled in the final game of the season. He didn’t believe that was necessarily his fault,” Cole said about Osweiler being benched for Manning. “Plus, he knows they like Trevor Siemian a lot, and I think the final blow in this one was when they didn’t come out with their strongest offer first, and say look, we are going to offer you 16 million dollars a year. We know that’s at the low end of starting quarterbacks in the NFL, but this is our best offer right from the shot, and we’re going to believe in you for 2 or 3 years. When they had to be coaxed into that, I think that that made Osweiler believe this is not the place for him. Plus, look, Houston paid him a ton of cash. It’s 30 some million dollars guaranteed, he’s probably going to see 55 million dollars of it. That’s a heck of deal for a guy who started 7 games.”
With Siemian as the only quarterback currently on the Denver roster, reports are that the Broncos are interested in San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, whose agents reportedly asked the team for permission to seek a trade while meeting at the NFL Scouting Combine. Although, Cole says San Francisco’s still not sure what they want to do Kaepernick.
“There’s a big argument going on with the 49ers. I think upper-management of that team would like to keep Kaepernick. They believe that his contract, 11.9 million for the upcoming season, is a relative bargain again for a starting quarterback, especially with one as much physical gift as him,” Cole said. “But there are some people in that organization who want to get rid of Kaepernick. So I think they’re going to have a difficult decision coming somewhere along the line about what they want to do, especially as you get closer to April 1 when you have to guarantee his salary for the 2016 season.
Cole continued, “That’s when this is all going to come to a head, I believe. Ownership would like to keep this guy, they see potential, I don’t know they’re ready to cast him off, and again, I’m not sure if I’m Denver, what do I pay for him? I don’t think I’d pay a lot in terms of draft picks for him, because I’ll gamble and say they’re not going to guarantee the salary for next season, and maybe I can get him for a lot cheaper.”
Cole says Broncos President John Elway has pondered the idea of signing Robert Griffin III, but wants to continue to look into where the former Washington Redskins quarterback’s head is at after his tenure in D.C. ended badly.
“I don’t know exactly what his opinion of him is. I know that he’s talked to a couple people about RG3, there’s a possible opening,” Cole said. “Griffin was a big Bronco fan growing up, not that that matters a lot, but his wife is also from Denver. I think he would like to make that happen if he could.”
The questions surround Griffin remain large for Elway, Cole said.
“From Elway’s perspective, is the kid going to come in with the right mindset and want to fix the things that are not working for him in his career?” Cole said. “That’s a huge question for Elway that he’s going to have to answer and whether that’s going to be a better option than going and getting somebody who, like a Ryan Fitzpatrick, and giving him a contract for a year or two while they solve this and get a younger guy.”
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