Justin Simmons, Broncos Exchange Offers

The Broncos placed the franchise tag on safety Justin Simmons last month, and it sounds like things could be progressing toward a long-term deal.

Speaking to local Denver media ahead of the draft, GM John Elway said the two sides were in “active negotiations,” per Mike Klis of Denver 9 News. “We’re in negotiations right now,’’ Elway said. “We’ve given them [an] offer and they gave us an offer back,” he revealed. Simmons is currently set to make $12.7MM under the tag in 2020, and the sides have until July 15th to hammer out an extension.

The Bears’ Eddie Jackson is currently the league’s highest-paid safety at $14.6MM annually, and it’s likely that Simmons is looking to eclipse that. Klis thinks he’ll end up somewhere close to $14MM. The Broncos already have fellow safety Kareem Jackson on a three-year, $33MM deal, so they’re going to have an expensive safety duo no matter what.

Simmons had a breakout season in 2019, when he started all 16 games for the second year in a row. He picked off four passes and batted down another 15, earning Pro Football Focus’ highest grade for any safety. The Boston College product turned 26 in November.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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