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Today, we’ll be discussing the impasse between Demaryius Thomas and the Broncos. The Broncos and Thomas‘ agent, Todd France, have recently exchanged proposals, which signifies some level of progress as the Wednesday deadline looms. However, there’s a significant divide between the two sides that needs to be crossed in less than 24 hours. Denver is offering “substantially more” than the contract of Minnesota’s Mike Wallace, who is currently the league’s second-highest paid receiver with a deal that averages $12MM a year. However, Thomas wants a deal that would exceed Calvin Johnson‘s mammoth contract.
Megatron, for the uninitiated, is in the midst of a $113MM+ deal with the Lions that is paying him upwards of $16MM per season with nearly $49MM guaranteed. GM John Elway doesn’t feel that Thomas should get quite that much. Johnson’s contract, the Broncos argue, is an outlier when it comes to wide receiver salaries. In fact, Elway (allegedly) told Cowboys COO Stephen Jones as much when the two (allegedly) discussed their respective contract talks with Thomas and Dez Bryant. At the time, Johnson was being paid under the old rookie scale and the Lions were forced to give him that hefty long-term deal in order to avoid their cap being hampered in the short-term.
Thomas’ stats over the last three years compare favorably to Megatron’s. The Broncos standout has hauled in 297 catches for 4,483 yards and 35 touchdowns while Johnson has 277 catches for 4,533 yards and 25 touchdowns. Thomas is also coming off a career year in which he racked up 111 catches and averaged more than 100 yards per game. Thomas’ camp was also quick to point out that Megatron’s deal was actually signed when the salary cap was $120.6MM rather than $143.3MM.
Earlier today, Jason Cole of Bleacher Report noted that he doesn’t expect Elway to budge significantly when it comes to the figures being discussed for Thomas. Personally, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Thomas’ camp bend with a compromise that looks more like Wallace’s deal than Johnson’s.
What’s your gut feeling at this time? Will the Broncos and Thomas work out a long-term deal before the Wednesday deadline? If so, how much will Thomas get from Denver? Let us know in the comment section below!