Nov 27, 2011; San Diego, CA, USA; San Diego Chargers outside linebacker Shaun Phillips (95) in overtime against the Denver Broncos at Qualcomm Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

Denver Broncos Super-Charged For Next Season?


Well, now that the Denver Broncos picked up the third Ex-Charger this offseason, Quentin Jammer, I thought it may be interesting to take look at how the Bolts´ rival from Denver is set up right now. This means, with this piece I want to figure out, if they were able to make their team even better than they were in 2012.
Let´s jump right into this.

One of the first moves the Broncos´ executive vice president John Elway made in free agency, was to snag former Chargers guard Louis Vasquez off the market. He signed a 4-year, $23.5 million deal with the team. Louis Vasquez was the only reliable lineman besides center Nick Hardwick last year in San Diego. His departure was painful, but when looking at those contract numbers above, then Tom Telesco obviously did the right thing (he would have been too expensive).

Besides picking up the the second best guard in this year´s free agency, the Broncos put the franchise tag on one of the best left tackles in the league, Ryan Clady. So, I guess it´s save to say they were able to upgrade their offensive line.

Another big move in free agency was the signing of the slot receiver threat Wes Welker. The former New England Patriot may be a little bit overrated in the NFL – he dropped quite a lot of passes in his career (I´m not only talking about championship games here) – but nonetheless, he was a huge part of the Patriots´ success in the last decade. So, with Demaryius Thomas, Eric Decker (Peyton Manning get´s the best out of this guy) and now Wes Welker, their receiving corps looks pretty dangerous.

Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie lines up as the next big free agent pick-up. Rodgers-Cromartie has been wildly inconsistent in his two seasons in Philadelphia, but he has the skill set to be one of the top corners in the league. The Broncos gave him a one-year deal worth $5 million. For the comparison: The Chargers signed (the pretty injury-prone) Derek Cox to a four-year contract worth $20 million, with $10.25 million guaranteed. Considering DRC´s upside, it´s just fair to say, our division rival did a solid job on working out that deal.

Let´s take a quick look at what they were able to do in this year´s NFL draft.

With their first round pick, defensive tackle Sylvester Williams, the Broncos addressed a big need, the defensive line. They didn´t have an interior pass rush, so Williams surely is an upgrade over the last year´s starters.

In the second round they selected Montee Ball, running back out of Wisconsin. This pick was a bit of a head scratcher for most of the fans, as Alabama´s Eddie Lacy still would have been available. John Elway said the decision was based on “medical” (Lacy suffered a toe injury in 2011). Ball maybe was picked too early, but after all he fills a need. Willis McGahee turns 32 in October and is coming off a knee injury. Knowshon Moreno had a solid season, but has struggled during his career and Ronnie Hillman can´t be seen as the solution either. So, Montee Ball should be able to help the vets in the running game.

But the Broncos´ front staff waited until the fifth round to select a potential “replacement” for Elvis Dumervil; they grabbed defensive end Quanterus Smith with the 146th pick. We already know this wasn´t the only move they´ve made to address this position. Shortly after that draft pick it became public that Denver sealed the deal on the former Chargers´ outside linebacker Shaun Phillips. So Phillips will play defensive end in Denver´s 4-3 scheme this season…can he be considered as an upgrade over Dumervil? Stupid question, I know (the answer is: No!). But John Elway was able to get him in on a 1-year, $1 million dollar contract. This, I´ve to admit, is a great deal for the Broncos.

But defensive end isn´t the only roster spot they failed to make an upgrade; the safety position still is pretty weak. Rahim Moore was one of the goats of the postseason. His blown coverage in the fourth quarter of the Broncos´ only playoff game last year potentially cost the team a win against the Baltimore Ravens. But it looks like Elway added some depth behind the starting duo in the last line of the defense yesterday: According to the Denver Post, he signed long-time Charger Quentin Jammer to a 1-year, $940,000 deal.

So, BoltFam, what do you think about the offseason work of our division rival from Denver? Will they be a bigger threat in 2013 than they were last year? Is it already a sure thing, that they will win the AFC West? Are they the best team in the AFC? And finally – do you think they will win the Super Bowl? Feel free to place your thoughts in the comments section below.

Thank you for checking out this piece!

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Tags: San Diego Chargers

  • Stefanie Smith

    Broncos must see something in our vet Chargers that neither the new regime or many of the fans see.

    • shayaaa

      I think most fans were pushing for Jammer to move to safety for a few years now. Everyone seems to have wanted him around in some form or another and safety would be the best bet. Seeing guys like Cason, Jammer, and Philips all sign 1 year deals for around $1M really stings. I would love to have all these guys back on the team given their price tags.

      • MC Boltman

        Yeh…1-year, $1 million…ouch! But I´ve to admit, I don´t see Phillips doing a great job there on the Broncos defense.

    • MC Boltman

      Well, they are pretty desperate at the safety position…and also at DE when they screwed up that Dumervil deal…so they pulled the trigger on our vets and got them ridiculously cheap – Phillips surely would´ve asked for more here in San Diego than just $1 million…

    • Dion Chin

      It’s called desperation and trying to stir things up. This just made our rivalry more heated. You guys need to relax! Ya we lost Jammer, we gained Cox. Ya we lost Shaun Philips but we gained Freeney. And we got people like Stef here talking shit about TT calling him the “New Kids” when TT has done more in his first year than AJ ever has. SMH.

  • Pels04

    Damnit! Now this makes me mad. 1 year 1 mill contract and now hes switching to safety.

    http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/2013/5/30/4379240/quentin-jammer-signs-denver-broncos-safety

    • Stefanie Smith

      It’s because the New Kids treated him like crap and wouldn’t even talk to him. He was darn near begging.

      • MC Boltman

        The new kids treated him like crap – they had no respect for him? Source?

        • Thomas Powell

          What a truly stupid comment by Stephanie smh

      • http://www.BoltBeat.com/ Peter Thompson

        Stephanie… before you go getting excited about what Thomas Powell posted about you… just go through his comment history. Clearly, he thinks the people & the articles on here are a “waste of his time”, but still keeps coming back. He just wants to get a rise out of people by posting negative crap, and then bounces off without expanding on any of it, or answering the replies. I wouldn’t waste too much time thinking about it.. lol.

        • IrishCarBomb

          Hes correct though, MC Boltman just said it more tactfully. Just because she comments more than Powell does not make her rhetoric any less fabricated/ludicrous.

    • MC Boltman

      Yes, the Donks were able to bring them in ridiculously cheap. I can see Jammer doing great at safety…sigh…

      • tubbs45

        just seems stupid not to make that offer…

        • http://boltbeat.com/ Ernie Padaon

          well… $1 million to our salary cap is a huge amount right now

          • http://www.BoltBeat.com/ Peter Thompson

            Until we make cuts… and probably even after that = )

  • Jason Jaime Black

    Just happy to know we can run on SP’s side and we can throw to wherever Jammer is lined up. This is a positive thing for the chargers! #boltup

    • MC Boltman

      Yeh, Phillips is definitely no upgrade…but the 1-year, $1 million deal makes me jealous…

  • Stefanie Smith

    It’s rude how we treat our players. I am sick of the line” it’s business.”. He would have done anything to finish up as a Charger. But nooooooo… they couldn’t even make him an offer. Not like we have top caliber FAs now.

    • MC Boltman

      Yeh, that´s the ugly side of that (or all) sports – the business side. CB depth looks ugly btw….

      • tubbs45

        Especially with cox’s injury history… we’ll see who is a June 1st cut…

        • MC Boltman

          Yep…CB depth is highly welcomed

  • tubbs45

    Well, the question is would they have taken the same deal $$-wise if the bolts had offered it. Doubtful IMO, because they are all in search of a RING. Broncos are all-in with Manning, pulling out all the stops. I would have liked Jammer as a SS and I liked SP’s number, but I didnt like SP… Just hope we are the ones to throw the monkey wrench in their superbowl plans, on our way to New York. #BOLTUP

    • Stefanie Smith

      Jammer said he would have. He was darn near begging for the New Kid to offer him something. He wanted to retire here. They (Moe and Larry of the New Kids) weren’t interested. They are being advertised as great management and coaching geniuses but they are ignorant — with no loyalty to San Diego, the community or the fans.

      • tubbs45

        When did he say he would take the vet minimum? I did hear him say he wanted to stay in SD…

        • Nick in PB

          I don’t blame the “new kids” for wanting to go in a different direction. If they show loyalty to the people they brought here, that perform well, then that’s the best we can expect.

          • tubbs45

            They have their plans AND I’m hopeful things work out for the best. If the star align we might see magic and that my friend is what make the season so anticipated!

    • MC Boltman

      Yes they obviously see the Donks winning the SB. But I´m pretty sure Jammer would´ve come in at the same price here in San Diego. Phillips surely would´ve asked for more money…who knows, maybe we´re able to surprise. We´ve been a contender for years and could do nothing (ugh!)…maybe we now can do more in an underdog role (wishful thinking).

      • tubbs45

        I would have liked to have seen Jammer in the bolts uniform still. He has been durable and reliable, character vet who can hit. Safety would have extended his stay with the bolts, but last year who else would you have relied on at CB?

        • Nick in PB

          I totally agree… the only question is, at what price? Plus, at this side of his career, he’s looking for that ring!

  • X navydawg

    Hope this don’t come back to bite telesco in the ass

    • MC Boltman

      Well, depth at CB doesn´t look good. Said and wrote it a couple of times, that I´d rather have Gilchrist at outside CB than at SS. Jammer would´ve been my option there until Brandon Taylor is healthy again…the Donks obviously had the same thing in mind

  • Stefanie Smith

    What did we get in exchange for dumping all the Charger players? Who do we have that is better than they were?

    • MC Boltman

      Well, Derek Cox has great talent, but he´s very injury-prone…that makes me worried…btw he also got the biggest contract of all FA signings: four-year deal worth $20 million with 10.25 million guaranteed

    • Nick in PB

      Stefanie, I love your Charger Spirit but it seems you are under the impression that we just let these people go? The players we released were all due new contracts. Some were worthy, Vasquez, Franklin come to mind. Some were not. It’s a players prerogative to find themselves the best paycheck. That’s what they did. Some were not offered contracts because it was time to make changes. With our salary cap problems, there was no way we were going to sign some of these guys back. Unfortunately, you can thank AJ and the contracts given to Gaither and Meachem. And we still have to pay them! I don’t think you should be so down on the new guys. Let’s see what they bring to the table over the long haul. Keep that spirit!!!

  • http://www.BoltBeat.com/ Peter Thompson

    The Broncos have inproved, for the most part, and are still the team to beat in the division, and probably in the AFC. Not sure if they will improve on a 13-3 season, but they potentially could. Even if they win the division at 11-5, they will still lock up a nice little playoff spot.
    As for them signing our players, I am not mad about it. Change is never easy. Telesco is moving forward with a new era of Charger football. (for better, or for worse). It is clear to me, that he is not willing to keep average players around, just because they come with a cheap price tag, and/or are well liked for their personalities. Otherwise, he won’t have a job in this league very long. He is hiring young new talent, and letting them compete for roster spots. Some will be good, and stay… some will be bad, and get cut… others will be average, and may be used to fill in, until another solution presents itself. The thing that these new guys have, that the guys he let go don’t have, is that we don’t know how the majority of them will work out.. YET. The guys we just let go have already proven that they are either average (or bad), were too expensive for our cap situation, or not a solution to the problems of last season (or they were the problem itself). Hopefully, we get a few diamonds in the rough out of these new guys, who can win the fan’s affections moving forward. I am not expecting fireworks this season, and there may be some rough-going until things gel. But, at least Telesco is attempting to put a new product on the field. Because, last time I checked… the product from last season wasn’t putting asses in seats.. weren’t winning enough games, weren’t inspiring excitement from fans, or keeping the GM or HC’s job safe. That’s a fact. The ones that were good.. and fit our budget… stayed.

    When we entered the offseason, the main areas of concern were our o-line, our secondary, our pass rush, and our middle linebacker positions. It doesn’t surprise me whatsoever that these areas have been overhauled, and players in those departments have been let go. In fact, it makes total sense to me.

    • MC Boltman

      Sure, TT wants to rebuild the team…that´s his job. But man, if Shaun Phillips would´ve been available after Ingram went down with an injury, then TT would´ve pulled the trigger on him – there I´m 120% sure. And as the Chargers weren´t able to get a solid/great OLB in the draft (due to that 4th rd loss), I think he would´ve tried to get him back anyway…not at any price, but he would´ve tried it.

      • http://www.BoltBeat.com/ Peter Thompson

        Oh, I absoutely agree with that. But, if you had to guess… why didn’t he try to sign Phillips back in the first place?

        • MC Boltman

          Because SP95 was asking for too much money..and maybe couldn´t accept a backup role :)

      • jonpviv

        disagree. too much has been brought out since he left about philips being a problem in the locker room. numbers have gone down for a couple years in a row now. This team is going in a different direction most definitely.

        • MC Boltman

          Well after Ingram went down with an injury, I´m pretty sure TT would´ve talked to SP95…but I´m fine with the new direction…lets move on!

  • Rob Base

    San Diego Super Broncos…. Oh wait a minute right song but wrong team sorry bout that. Darn Donkey’s. Can’t wait till our Bolts play them!

  • Dion Chin

    Guys, Jammer is old and was never that good to begin with! Yes he was awesome for the community of San Diego but really, that’s about it! He just claimed Denver is the best place to win a Super Bowl, let’s move on here! We got a great group of young players and the Donkey’s are just getting older. All i gotta say regarding this article, is thank god the Donkey’s passed up on Eddie Lacy!

    • jonpviv

      Yer a genius bud. been waiting for this post for awhile. All I see are posts of their love affair with Jammer and I don’t get it…..

    • MC Boltman

      ..and thank god the Donks weren´t able to get Freeney and Woodson..cause that would´ve been scary…wait where´s the spin move messiah now?..alriiiight…:)

  • J.C. Ortiz

    People should realize that Jammer and Philips graded out as two of the worst players at their respective positions in all of FA (by pro football focus)

    Stick a fork in them.

    • jonpviv

      Amen. Why all the love for Jammer? How many times have we seen 3 calls against Jammer to one big hit or pick? His whole career was one big shake of the head…….and its come out the Philips was one big cancer in the locker room…….good luck Denver, hopefully us bolt fans will be laughing at them come January…..

      • MC Boltman

        Ohh…I look forward to that laugh in January..(wishful thinking) :)

    • MC Boltman

      What makes fans a little pissed is that the Donks were able to get them in ridiculously cheap…for that money I would like to have on the roster too…well now that we got Freeney, we don´t need Phillips..whatever..they are Broncos now..lets move on

  • FitzWilly

    I heard the Donkey’s tried to sign Lance Alworth
    They heard he had a little bit left in the tank :)

    • MC Boltman

      Cool…lets do it :)

  • IrishCarBomb

    What I am surprised to see is that no one has even mentioned on here that a lot of these free agents not only gravitate to the winning teams, but they take cheaper pay checks when they do to be a part of that success. We as fans have absolutely NO IDEA what happens behind those closed doors and telephone calls. Was Jammer in talks with management? Might we have signed him after June 1st? What was his asking price (it MAY not have been vet minimum for our team where he MAY have believed he deserved more respect/=money)? Did/do we even have that vet minimum to spare or does TT have that tucked away for someone else who isn’t even on our radar yet? The only fact put out there was that he wanted to stay with the chargers. Anything else anybody tries to push as fact (some more than others) is just fabricated bullshit flowing from your fingertips.

    • MC Boltman

      Hey…there had been multiple talks that Phlllips surely would´ve asking for more money here in San Diego than just $1 milliion…I and many others said that a couple of times…all that stuff you´re mentioning had been discussed here in the comments section and in articles multiple times…after all I trust TT and I´m sure he knows what to do…he has done a great job so far…we´re moving on without those vets and thats fine…

      • IrishCarBomb

        I should have clarified that a lot of what I was referencing was in respect to Jammer, because I did not even mention the “good side” chump. His actions and words afterwards where clear enough. In respect to Jammer though, I have read from both articles and comments on here that he was offered nothing and disrespected. My point is we just don’t know that.

  • 1961 Fan

    Some prognosticators have the Broncos in the Super Bowl this year! Their opponents will be the 49ers; we shall see if all this rings true as P. Manning goes into the final years of his football career.

    • MC Boltman

      Well, I´m afraid the Donks could make it yes…but don´t forget the Seahawks! (or the Falcons). And maybe the Pats will have a great year again..we´ll see – but one thing has to be considered: at DE and S they didn´t get better..in case of DE, they even got worse….much worse (yes – pointing at you SP95)…