The Denver Broncos are rumored to be losing their playmaking tight end next year, with reports that talks between the team and Julius Thomas on a long-term deal are non-existent.
Broncos general manager John Elway reportedly has no plans to sit down with Frank Bauer, Thomas’ agent, to talk about keeping the tight end rather than letting him walk in free agency.
Thomas had a breakout year in 2013, catching 65 passes for 788 yards and 12 touchdowns, and though his yards dipped in 2014, he still was able to catch make catches for another 12 touchdowns. But Thomas has also missed a total of 28 games in four years, and after spraining his ankle last year had just 66 total receiving yards in his last eight games.
Julius Thomas seems to have worn out his welcome in the locker room as well. In an interview with BSN Denver this week, an anonymous teammate trashed Thomas and claimed he was just out for money.
“Julius is here to get his money and get out,” one teammate told me last week. “That’s just how some guys are. He didn’t grow up playing this game and it’s just not in his DNA to put it all out there.” When asked if Julius Thomas was soft like some say, he said, ” where there’s smoke, there’s fire.” According to the teammate, Julius Thomas was healthy enough to play multiple times last season but refused to. In one instance Julius Thomas was heard saying, “I’m about 90% – I’m getting close.”
The Denver Broncos will have some major personnel decisions to make in the roughly three weeks left until free agency starts. The biggest is Peyton Manning, who Elway said is yet to announce whether he’s coming back next year.
“He hasn’t made a decision yet,” Elway told the Denver Post. “I know he feels better. We had a good talk.”
Elway and Manning met last week, and while it’s believed that the quarterback intends to return for at least another year, there are reports that the Broncos are wary of his injuries and could part ways with Manning.
The Denver Broncos are also rumored to be working on a deal with wide receiver Demaryius Thomas, and could slap an estimated $12.7 million franchise tag on him if they can’t reach a deal. Keeping Demaryius could be key for the Broncos, especially amid reports that both Julius Thomas and wide receiver Wes Welker could be gone via free agency.
[Image via Fantasy Pros.]