Dumervil earned a sizable contract after racking up 17 sacks during the 2009 season, earning the All-Pro distinction and making a name for himself as a premier pass rusher. The following summer he signed a six year deal worth $61.5 million before missing the entire 2010 season with a torn pectoral muscle.
While known for racking up respectable sack numbers the past few years, including 11 in the 2012 regular season, his annoying penalties (he led the league with 4 off-sides infractions) and weakness in the run game have hurt his overall effectiveness.
The Broncos are pleased with Dumervil’s play, especially when rushing the passer and creating havoc (as evidenced by his 6 forced fumbles, which was good for 3rd in the NFL), and would like to keep him on the roster. But with about $31 million due to the 29 year old over the next three seasons, the team would like to stretch out the years of the deal in order to reduce the per-year cap hit of the contract, according to Jason La Canfora.
Broncos like pass rusher Elvis Dumervil, but not at $12M/year. They are seeking a lower deal, and situation could end up with his release…
— Jason La Canfora (@JasonLaCanfora) March 6, 2013
CBS 4′s Vic Lombardi said, while on the Irv & Joe show Wednesday, that Dumervil would likely be open to restructuring the deal to add more years while reducing the per-year salary.
“The Broncos are going to ask him to restructure, they already have, they are already negotiating with his agent. If they don’t agree on a new contract, they are going to cut him. It’s as simple as that. And when I say they don’t agree, I mean if they (Dumervil and his agent) are unwilling to restructure,” Lombardi said. “They want him back, but not at 12 million per year. They’d like to get that figure down and add a couple years to his contract.”
With a new deal, the Broncos would have extra cap flexibility that will aid in the team’s efforts to land Dumervil and his fellow players some help on the free agent market. Lombardi added that they may use the space to negotiate with current players as well.
“One of the reasons they’re doing this is they still want to negotiate with Ryan Clady on a long-term deal. Just because they franchise him doesn’t mean they don’t want to get a deal done,” Lombardi said. “I think in the end, by March 17th (the official deadline to restructure) I could see Dumervil returning under a new deal. Maybe they take that $31 million currently owed to him and make it a four or five year deal.”
But if Dumervil decides to be firm and hold strong to his current deal, the Broncos might have no choice but to cut their losses and move on.
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