MARCH 16: Wilkinson indeed received a second-round tender from the Broncos, Mike Klis of 9News tweets.
MARCH 2: The Broncos are “likely” to cuff offensive lineman Elijah Wilkinson with the second-round tender, according to Mike Klis of 9News. The tender would cost roughly $3.2MM, or give the Broncos a second-round pick if someone were to sign him to an offer sheet that goes unmatched.
Wilkinson, 25, has started games on the inside and the outside for the Broncos. The plan is to have him work at both left tackle and right guard next year, allowing them to take full advantage of his versatility.
The Broncos’ offensive line figures to look different in 2020 – for starters, Ronald Leary won’t be brought back on his option. Meanwhile, left tackle Garrett Bolles may or may not be part of the plan for 2021 and beyond. The club will mull all of its options between now and May before deciding on his fifth-year add-on.
In 2018, Wilkinson saw seven starts at right guard. Last year, he started 12 times while Ja’Wuan James was injured. The advanced metrics showed that he wasn’t quite spectacular, though he was solid – he finished out with a 59.6 overall score from Pro Football Focus, slotting him as the 59th ranked qualified tackle in the NFL. That type of showing would make a one-year, $3.2MM salary well worth it for Denver.
On the other side of the ball, the Broncos are reportedly eyeing Texans free agent nose tackle D.J. Reader. Meanwhile, they’ll allow defensive lineman Adam Gotsis to reach the open market.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.