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Von Miller – The Pros and Cons

At the time, signing Von Miller to a six-year/$114 million contract seemed like a brilliant move.  It was July of 2016, and the 27-year-old Miller had already won a Super Bowl MVP award, twice made the All-Pro team, while racking up double-digit sacks every year, including 18.5 sacks back in 2012.

After signing the long-term extension, Miller continued to be the face of the Broncos making eight Pro Bowls, forcing 26 fumbles, and eventually becoming Denver’s all-time sack leader with 106.

But contracts are tricky, especially in the NFL.  After many years of Hall-of-Fame like production, Miller provided only 8 sacks in 2019, missed the entire 2020 season with an ankle injury, and Denver has a team option on his contract.

In layman’s terms, that means that the Broncos have the option to pay Miller another $18 million to play next season, figure out a way to renegotiate the terms, or release the All-Pro linebacker and thus save $22 million in cap room.

The pros and cons of keeping Von Miller.


Pro – Von Miller was outstanding in Dancing with the Stars.

Con – Von Miller is now dancing around a criminal investigation by the Parker Police Department.

Pro – Von Miller is only 31 years-old.

Con – If Von Miller were a quarterback, a field goal kicker, or a long-snapper, 31 would still be considered young.  For a defensive pass rusher coming off an ankle injury and asked to cover running backs and tight ends on occasion, not so much.

Pro – Keeping Von Miller gives Denver a dynamic duo of Miller and Bradley Chubb.

Con – Releasing Von Miller gives Denver a duo of signing Justin Simmons and having the money to do it with.


Pro – Releasing Von Miller will allow the Broncos more than $22 million to spend on other young talent in the league.

Con – $22 million can’t even buy you two AJ Bouye’s these days.

Pro – Von Miller puts fans in the seats.

Con – Due to COVID-19, there are no fans in the seats.


Pro – Giving Von Miller an extension would allow the Broncos to restructure his contract, clearing up cap room, and keeping the all-time Denver sack leader in Orange for the foreseeable future.

Con – The only thing worse than a 31-year-old pass-rusher with police issues, attitude issues, declining production, and an expensive six-year contract….is one with a nine-year contract.

Pro – Keeping Von Miller could allow Denver to trade him later for equal value.

Con – The last time a Denver team tried to trade a future Hall-of-Famer for equal value, they got Austin Gomber, two right-handed pitchers, an unknown first baseman, and some outfielder named Jhon Torres.


Pro – There’s some sentimental value here as Von Miller was the first draft pick that John Elway nailed.

Con – It was also the last draft pick that Elway nailed.


Pro – It’s possible that Von Miller will be asked to take a pay cut, accept the offer, and stay a Bronco for life.

Con – It’s possible that Deshaun Watson will fall in love with snowboarding and demand a trade to Denver, but that too, is never going to happen.


Pro – Getting rid of Von Miller will force thousands of fans to put away their number 58 jersey and purchase a new one of their second favorite Bronco.

Con – It’s not quite the same watching the Broncos while wearing a Brandon McManus jersey.

Images via espn.com, milehighreport.com, durangoherald.com, denverbroncos.com, youtube.com, usatoday.com

Alan Tapley The Athletic Supporter

Alan Tapley is an educator, author, and blogger who has lived just outside of Boulder for the last twenty years.  His published work includes two novels, two children’s books, a series of cartoons in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, and multiple sports related articles. His love for family and the state of Colorado is only matched by one thing, his passion for sports.  The first baseball game he ever attended was at Wrigley Field, before there were lights.  At the final Bronco game at the old Mile High, he allegedly cut out a piece of his seat in the South stands.  But regardless of being here for the Avalanche’s last Stanley Cup, the Rockies only World Series appearance, and all the Broncos’ Super Bowl Victories, his wife never fails to remind him that he wasn’t at the University of Colorado in 1990, like she was.  The year the Buffs football team won the National Championship

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