The Broncos are gunning for another appearance in the Super Bowl, only this time with a much different result.
Denver has been very active this offseason, bringing in three players who will be an immediate upgrade over what the team had at each of their positions on defense.
The Broncos started by snagging safety T.J. Ward, a player who spent the first four years of his career as a member of the Cleveland Browns.
Ward was taken in the second round of the 2010 draft, and he has been a valuable player for a very poor team ever since. In 2013, Ward was second on the Browns with 112 tackles.
|T.J. Ward Profile|
Now, he'll get the chance to play for a contender.
The Broncos were in desperate need of a physical presence on defense. Clearly, they took a good look at the way Seattle manhandled them in Super Bowl XLVIII.
Ward has a reputation for making big hits. In addition to that, he should be extremely helpful in defending the run.
In recent years, the Broncos have been victimized by opposing tight ends. Last season, Rob Gronkowski—one of the biggest, most physical tight ends in the league—crossed paths with Ward. In the video below, you'll see the result:
Ward will be an excellent addition to the Denver defense.
The Broncos stayed aggressive on Tuesday night, luring former New England Patriots cornerback Aqib Talib to Denver.
This will be the second straight offseason in which the Broncos have secured a key player from the New England Patriots, bringing Welker over last year.
Talib is a physical defensive back who is also one of the best pure cover guys in the league. However, the addition of Talib likely means Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie has played his last game in Denver.
Broncos' offer to Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie has been pulled. He's gone. Aqib Talib much stronger.— Mike Klis (@MikeKlis) March 12, 2014
Though Rodgers-Cromartie played quite well for the team in 2013, Talib is even better.
|Aqib Talib Profile|
His signing by the Broncos was likely a surprise to many, but it also showed that John Elway and the rest of the organization is going to go all in during their short window of opportunity.
Immediately, Broncos fans had to be fantasizing about one of the league's premier pass-rushers coming to the Mile High City.
It didn't take long for the team to make it a reality. Initially reported by ESPN's Adam Schefter, the Broncos agreed to a three-year, $30 million deal with the man who has 117 career sacks.
Denver gave up 24.9 points per game last season. It appears the team is out to change that in a major way.
"You know what," DeMarcus Ware said, "I think it's an investment in brutal nasty. They're trying to make a statement" http://t.co/NyBwgwMTOO— Denver Post Broncos (@PostBroncos) March 13, 2014
In the span of two days, the Broncos have found a physical, hard-hitting safety to go along with a physical, shutdown cornerback and a very talented pass-rush specialist who can also help against the run.
Though the Broncos have spent a pretty penny to obtain these players, they have done so in search of the ultimate goal.
Kudos to Elway and the rest of the organization for making these moves. Just two days into the signing period, Denver has already won free agency.