Melvin Gordon III, Broncos Reportedly Agree to 2-Year, $16 Million Contract

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistMarch 20, 2020

CARSON, CA - DECEMBER 22: Running back Melvin Gordon #25 of the Los Angeles Chargers celebrates after scoring a touchdown against Oakland Raiders during the first half at Dignity Health Sports Park on December 22, 2019 in Carson, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

Melvin Gordon III is reportedly heading to the Denver Broncos.

According to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport, the free-agent running back agreed to a contract worth $16 million for two years with $13.5 million guaranteed.

Rapoport noted Gordon had a better offer on the table from another team, but "the lure of playing in the same division" as his former squad, the Los Angeles Chargers, appealed to him.

Gordon had been seeking a new deal since last year. He held out of training camp and into the regular season before returning in Week 5 without a new contract.

The 2015 first-round pick had mixed results when he was on the field in 2019, totaling 908 yards from scrimmage and nine touchdowns in 12 games. While he had big weeks, the 3.8 yards per carry and the 51.0 rushing yards per game were the lowest since his rookie season.

Despite the inconsistency, the 26-year-old has proved he can be an elite weapon out of the backfield.

The two-time Pro Bowler averaged 1,457 yards from scrimmage and 12.7 touchdowns from 2016 to 2018. The 6'1", 215-pounder can pick up yards between the tackles, especially near the goal line, or make big plays as a receiving threat.

Though he lost out on snaps and touches last season to Austin Ekeler, who will presumably take on a full-time role in Los Angeles, Gordon can take advantage of a fresh start to once again become a featured runner.

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If the Wisconsin product can stay healthy—he's only played one 16-game season in five years—he can be a key playmaker to help bring diversity to Denver's backfield.

Gordon can be a change of pace from Phillip Lindsay, who has run for more than 1,000 yards in each of his first two seasons. He's also very good as a receiver, which can go a long way toward helping the development of second-year quarterback Drew Lock.