NFL Rumors: Denver Broncos Enter The Race For Top OL Free Agent Russell Okung, Veteran Tackle Ryan Clady May Be Heading Out Of Denver

Daniel Benjamin

The defending Super Bowl champions Denver Broncos have entered the sweepstakes for big offensive tackle Russell Okung, according to Josina Anderson of ESPN. Anderson tweeted that Okung will meet with the Broncos today.

Okung, who is representing himself, was selected with the sixth overall pick of the first round by the Seahawks in the 2010 draft. The 28-year-old has been a mainstay on the 'hawks offensive line since his rookie campaign, starting all 72 games of his career – including 13 last season. However, Okung has been injury prone and has yet to play a full season. He had shoulder surgery in January.

Okung has been beset by nagging injuries throughout his career. The seventh-year pro's best season came in 2012 when he was selected to the Pro Bowl and graded out as a 12 by NFL Pro Reference. He won a Super Bowl title with the Seahawks in 2013.

The Broncos are possibly in need of a left tackle because last season's starter Ryan Harris signed with the Steelers and they have reached a stalemate in trying to renegotiate veteran Ryan Clady's contract. Harris started 16 games, plus all three postseason games, last year after signing a one-year contract with the Broncos after Clady tore his ACL. Harris, who was graded out as an 8 by Pro Football Reference, signed a two-year, $3.9 million deal with the Steelers.

Clady is due $9.5 million this year with a cap of $10.1 million. The Broncos, per 9News, is looking to cut Clady's salary to less than $5 million. If Denver were to cut Clady, it would cost them $1.2 million in dead money.

Denver would then likely move second-year tackle Ty Sambrailo to an offensive guard spot opposite Max Garcia. Sambrailo has the ability to play both tackle positions.

Denver has already had a busy offseason, losing quarterback Brock Osweiler and defensive tackle Malik Jackson along with Harris and others. The Broncos did re-sign running back C.J. Anderson, while signing linebacker Von Miller is reportedly still a priority.

The market of available top offensive tackles is dwindling by the day as Donald Penn has re-signed with the Oakland Raiders, leaving Andre Smith (Cincinnati Bengals) as one of the few options for teams.

[AP Photo by Scott Eklund]

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