2012 NFL Free Agency: Broncos Release Cornerback Andre Goodman

Field YatesCorrespondent IIIApril 13, 2012

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - DECEMBER 4: Andre' Goodman #21 of the Denver Broncos carries the ball after an interception in the fourth quarter against the Minnesota Vikings on December 4, 2011 at Mall of America Field at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Broncos defeated the Vikings 35-32. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)
Hannah Foslien/Getty Images

In a somewhat surprising move, the Denver Broncos have released cornerback Andre Goodman, an important piece to their resurgent defense in 2011. 

Goodman, 33, started every game in 2011, finishing with a career-high 49 tackles and two interceptions.  It was his third year with the team, and he had been featured primarily in a starting role opposite of Champ Bailey.

Originally a 2002 third-round pick of the Detroit Lions, Goodman spent four seasons with Detroit and three in Miami before joining the Broncos.  He played collegiately at South Carolina, where he was a two-year starter. 

In March of 2009 he signed a five-year, $20.4 million deal that included $9.8 million in guaranteed money with Denver.

The move is an interesting one, because although the Broncos added veteran Tracy Porter in free agency, the secondary was still an area of concern in 2011, and Goodman would serve as at the very least a good depth-level corner.  It was likely driven by his scheduled base salary of $4.62 million for 2012, and expensive figure for a non-starter.

Goodman will now enter the free agent market, and I'd expect him to land with a new team in the near future. 

The Broncos finished 8-8 in 2011 and as Division Champions of the AFC West. They've had a busy offseason thus far, highlighted by the signing of free agent quarterback Peyton Manning and subsequent trade of Tim Tebow to the New York Jets