Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

14 Jul 2013

Ryan Clady, Broncos, Agree to Five-Year Extension

Reported terms: five years, $57.5 million, $33 million guaranteed.

Too bad, I really wanted to see that rumored three-year, $33 million contract that was completely guaranteed come through the vine. I liked the idea of that one. Still, locking up your All-Pro left tackle is probably a pretty good idea.

Posted by: Rivers McCown on 14 Jul 2013

10 comments, Last at 19 Jul 2013, 4:36pm by LionInAZ


by Mr Shush :: Mon, 07/15/2013 - 6:27am

Quite a lot more money than Duane Brown got at the same age a year ago, interestingly.

by Bobman :: Tue, 07/16/2013 - 5:21pm

$$ possibly related to the value of the QB they protect, and his expected playoff window remaining. Broncos need 18 perfectly clean for the next two years. In this situation, Clady was more valuable to the Broncos than he might be to anybody else. If they had Tebow calling signals... not so much.

by Mr Shush :: Wed, 07/17/2013 - 6:38pm

Hmm. I'd say that the speed of Manning's release significantly reduces the utility of a top left tackle. Clearly you don't want to get him killed behind someone awful, but some of what you're paying for with a guy like Clady is wasted when the quarterback gets the ball out that quickly. Schaub, on the other hand, needs the time. Then again, obviously his health is less valuable than Manning's. It's not so clear-cut.

by LionInAZ :: Fri, 07/19/2013 - 4:36pm

This argument has some merit -- good inside pass protection is more important for Peyton with his quick reads and release. But you can't fault the Broncos for thinking beyond Manning, who may not be around in three years.

by Danish Denver-Fan :: Mon, 07/15/2013 - 7:17am

It's a lot of money, but the best paid tackle in football seems about right. Unless tackles in general are overpaid - which i guess is possible - this seems like a good contract for the Broncos.

by Independent George :: Mon, 07/15/2013 - 11:18am

I keep forgetting he's only 26 years old. That seems like a great deal for both sides.

by bamboozler (not verified) :: Mon, 07/15/2013 - 12:03pm

Lot of money for a non-quarterback, and it's certainly possible that left tackles are overpaid relative to their value, but for a big money deal to a left tackle, it's hard to think of a better deal for both team and player. Clady gets 30+ million guaranteed, and the Broncos get one of the games top left tackles to protect Peyton Manning in the final two or three years of his career. Better yet, as indicated above, this deal will expire in his age 32 season, so his decline shouldn't be too dramatic barring a string of bad injuries.

Not sure on the monetary structure of this one just yet. Dan Hanzus at NFL.com says the 33 million guaranteed will all be paid in the first three years, so it's possible the deal is structured to make years four and five cheap to keep the cap impact at a bare minimum, which also works well for Clady because he won't really have to worry about getting released. Do wonder, though, if it could set the stage for a potential hold-out after three years. If he's still one of the best tackles in the league at age 30 and only making the veteran minimum on a heavily incentive-laden deal, the Broncos are probably going to have to work out another deal to keep him happy.

by commissionerleaf :: Tue, 07/16/2013 - 12:02pm

Looks like a very sensible deal. Clady is the difference between Manning 2012 (virtually flawless after a couple early bumps) and Manning 2010 (Madly trying to carry an offense by himself while being chased by unblocked RDE's). Manning may be able to perform at a high level without a perfect line, but his ability to hit downfield suffers. His improvement in that regard in 2012 was striking.

Three years guaranteed means he'll be here for the rest of Peyton's reliable career, and then both team and Clady can re-evaluate while Clady is 30 and still able to get another big contract.

Denver may now be the best run team in football.

by dryheat :: Wed, 07/17/2013 - 7:59am

I don't know whether by "best run" you mean from a ground game or front office perspective, but I think that either is a hard argument to make.

by Leyoz :: Thu, 07/18/2013 - 5:16am

Also Clady should be around for the next Bronco's QB. If you let him go you then you have to worry about that position for your next QB, who (almost certainly) won't handle pressure like Manning.