The Denver Broncos and Joe Flacco have come to terms on restructuring the veteran quarterback’s contract.

The deal converted $17 million dollars of his 2019 salary into bonus money per Tom Pelissero, freeing up $13.6 million dollars in cap space. The move is curious, as the Broncos were in a good situation with their cap (17th most cap space in the league) prior to this move and they don’t have any pressing needs that will cost them.

Denver is also now slated to pay Flacco a little over $20 million dollars in 2020 and a little over $24 million dollars in 2021. That being said, the Broncos could easily cut bait. The dead cap number they’d face for cutting Flacco after this year would be $13.6 million dollars, the same amount they saved by converting his contract to bonus.

That means that this move not only cleared cap space for the Broncos (even if it’s space they don’t need), but it also made it easier for Denver to move forward with their quarterback of the future if they’re happy with Drew Lock‘s development.

Also, the Broncos could keep Flacco next year as a high-priced backup or even a starter depending on how he plays this year and how they feel about Lock’s progress.

There’s certainly reason to believe that the 2019 season could be a huge bounceback year for the former Raven. This week on NFL Network, Kurt Warner ranked Joe Flacco second on his list of the five most under-the-radar quarterbacks entering the season.

“I think he’s got a new lease on life there in Denver,” Warner said. “He’s got a good defense, he’s got good young weapons around him. I believe he’s going to surprise some people and have one of his best seasons in Denver, kinda revitalize things there and solidify the quarterback position.”

Well, he better solidify the quarterback position. If not, the difference for Flacco could be almost $45 million dollars.