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Replacing Julius Thomas in Denver

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January 26, 2015

With all signs pointing to Pro Bowl pass-catcher Julius Thomas not returning to Denver next year, the Broncos will have to address the Tight End position in the offseason.


Virgil Green

Green is also a free agent but some may argue he is more important to re-sign than the aforementioned Thomas. Green only caught 6 passes for 74 yards and one touchdown in 2014 but his impact on the running game and the emergence of CJ Anderson will likely land him back in Denver next season.

Jacob Tamme

It is almost a given that if Peyton Manning returns for his fourth season in a Broncos uniform his former colts teammate will do the same. Tamme’s production has dropped the past couple of seasons with the rise of Thomas, but with opportunity he can surely step in and be close to the player that caught 52 passes for 555 yards and 2 Touchdowns in 2012.


Owen Daniels

Daniels followed his former head coach from Houston to Baltimore last season and could do the same and reunite with Kubiak in Denver. Daniels returned to his pre injury form in 2014 with 48 receptions, for 527 yards and 4 touchdowns along with playing a big part in the Ravens upsetting the Steelers wild card weekend.

Jordan Cameron

Who better to replace Julius Thomas that another former basketball player turned tight end? Cameron has shown he can be among the elite in the NFL, but with a down year in Cleveland he might be available at a much cheaper rate.

Niles Paul

Another cheap option for Denver might be to pluck Paul away from Washington. Despite playing for 3 different quarterbacks, and splitting time with Jordan Reed, Paul had 39 receptions for 507 yards along with one touchdown grab in 2014.

Charles Clay

If the Broncos don’t re-sign Virgil Green they could look at Clay to replace him. Clay has shown in Miami he can play multiple positions and be a hybrid Tight End-Fullback much like Green but Clay is a more formidable option in the passing game.

By themselves non of these options look to be as good as retaining Thomas, but with needs to re-sign players at other positions,  building depth at the tight end position may be better than sinking a bunch of money into one.

Kubiak has often favored featuring multiple tight ends in his offensive schemes: Sharpe-Carswell, Putzier-Jackson in Denver. Daniels-Dreessen, and Daniels-Graham in Houston and it was Daniels-Gillmore last year in Baltimore. Look for Denver to sign 1-2 guys to form a committee much like they had in 2012 along with drafting another in the mid to late rounds to compete for playing time.


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