You can call it sour grapes, but I was probably the biggest voice of reason last year about the Broncos and Manning, as I thought they were a really good team and the class of the AFC. I think Manning is one of the best regular season QBs ever, but I can't believe all of the hype and praise being thrown at John Elway. His philosophy boils down to this: 1. Find a big name player on the free agent market. 2. Wait until other teams have courted and evaluated that player, setting the market. 3. Come over-the-top and offer the player more money, basically telling them "we'll give you more as long as you say yes right now." Not a single signing has been below market, a player who happens to uniquely fit their scheme, or a diamond in the rough. He outbids everyone, gets the player, and yet the media thinks this is a good strategy. Almost all of these players are likely to perform below the cost of their contract, considering that 31 other teams did not value the player as highly as the Broncos, and that is the inherent problem with free agency, but particularly the problem with the first-day, big-name superstar landings. This is a failing philosophy, and Elway is just risking that the team will win a championship before it all comes crashing down. The truth is that the Broncos are very good because of Peyton Manning (which was his only good move) and young, drafted, cheap talent, such as Demaryius Thomas, Von Miller, Chris Harris, Julius Thomas, Terrence Knighton, Trindon Holliday, Knowshown Moreno, etc. These guys came from a different regime. If players like Demarcus Ware and Aqib Talib fail in a an epic fashion, which isn't unlikely, the money that went towards those players is money that can't be spend to re-sign their own. Meanwhile, how much do you think Von Miller will command now that an aging has-been just got $10M per year, and how much for Harris when Talib makes $9M and Harris might be as effective? This reminds me of the Jets in 2009-10. Rex Ryan went out and spent a lot of money on Bart Scott, Calvin Pace, Ladanian Tomlinson, Kris Jenkins, Brad Smith and Santonio Holmes. Much like Elway, Ryan just outbid everyone else without really finding any value signings. They didn't focus on the draft or developing players. Everyone thought that Ryan had really hit some home runs, but in reality, it was the young, drafted talent from a different regime that was the nucleus- Darrelle Revis, Nick Mangold, D'Brickashaw Ferguson, Leon Washington, Dustin Keller. Ryan drafted poorly and the well ran dry; when all was said and done, the Jets were not able to restock, and it turned out guys like Scott and Pace were decent but not worth anything close their value. The Jets sank- the money was tied up in overpaid veterans. I see the Broncos as very similar, although because they have Peyton Manning, it may not be as apparent. Ultimately, Elway uses the same philosophy- pay more than anyone else in the name of "being aggressive." This isn't being innovative or using a winning strategy in the NFL, where you need to think outside the box. This is just using an old strategy that may have worked when there was no salary cap, but a strategy that time and time again has failed in the salary cap era.