Courtland Sutton Absent From Broncos’ Offseason Program; WR Seeking Extension

As many NFL offseason programs opened up yesterday, a few notable receivers (CeeDee Lamb and Justin Jefferson) were among the players not present as they seek new contracts. They are not alone in that respect.

Courtland Sutton is away from the Broncos as he too aims to secure a new pact, NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero reports. Two years remain on the 28-year-old’s contract, and he is due a base salary of $13MM in 2024. Only $2MM of that figure is guaranteed, though, and none of his 2025 salary is guaranteed as things currently stand.

Throughout last offseason and toward the 2023 trade deadline, Sutton was frequently tied to speculation he could be dealt. Denver came close to working out a deal with the Ravens, but in the end the former second-rounder remained in place. Jerry Jeudy was ultimately sent to the Browns, clearing the way for Sutton and Tim Patrick to occupy starting receiver roles with the Broncos moving forward.

Faring much better on the health front than many of Denver’s other receiving options in recent years, Sutton has missed considerable time only once in his career (when he was limited to a single game in 2020 due to an ACL tear). Since then, the SMU product has played 17, 15 and 16 games. Sutton has remained a focal point in Denver’s passing attack during that span, totaling 297 targets.

While the one-time Pro Bowler has not managed to reach 1,000 yards since he posted 1,112 in 2019, he rebounded as a red zone threat this past season. Sutton posted 10 touchdowns in 2023, comfortably the highest total of his career, while recording 772 yards on 59 receptions. While those figures are not those deserving of a long-term investment at the top of the receiver market, the Broncos now know they do not need to save future cash and cap space for a Jeudy extension.

Sutton is set to count $17.4MM against the cap this season, and that figure is nearly identical for 2025. An extension could lower those cap charges depending on how it was structured, and on where in the WR pecking order Sutton aims to place himself. The $15MM annual average value of his current pact puts him in a tie for 21st amongst receivers. Regardless of the AAV of a new pact, guaranteed compensation will no doubt be a key sticking point in this case.

Denver’s offense is set to see changes in 2024, the second year with head coach Sean Payton at the helm. The Broncos moved on from Russell Wilson, and a quarterback addition early in the upcoming draft would come as no surprise as a result. Sutton is positioned to continue serving as a central figure in the passing game, but the willingness of the team to engage in extension talks will now become an interesting storyline to follow.

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