There is nothing quite like the prelude to free agency in the NFL when the legal tampering window opens. Monday was no exception as eye-opening decisions were being made by teams around the league.
Often, the teams that spend big in the early stages of free agency quickly regret that decision. Last year, the Denver Broncos spent big on Ja’Wuan James and so far, the team is regretting that decision. We'll see if James can have a bounce-back season because when he did play, he was very productive.
The Broncos have started out free agency this year with a bit of a surprise in their decision to add Graham Glasgow as another piece to the offensive line. Glasgow has spent the last four years with the Detroit Lions and entered this offseason as the top interior offensive lineman available in free agency after Joe Thuney and Brandon Scherff were franchise-tagged by their respective teams.
This should be a sign to all fans just how invested the Broncos are in second-year QB Drew Lock. The Broncos have put their money where their mouth is in wanting to protect their investment and give him the best chance to grow.
Glasgow has proven he is one of the more underrated offensive linemen in football. Make no mistake, this is a home run pick. Here are four reasons why the Glasgow signing makes so much sense for the Broncos and should be thought of as good value for both sides.
1. Availability is an Absolute Must
The Broncos continue to show they are good at learning from past mistakes. James obviously was the big signing of last offseason but has followed the unlucky pattern of previous offensive linemen the Broncos have signed free agency whose injury histories don't usually pan out well for the team.
Glasgow is about as consistent as they come when it comes to seeing the field on a weekly basis. Over the past three years he has only missed one game. That alone should make this deal worth it when you look at some of the huge contracts being handed out to offensive linemen this offseason.
The Broncos have not announced where Glasgow is going to start yet. The team did just tender restricted free agent OL Elijah Wilkinson at the second-round level. Wilkinson is thought to be a favorite of Mike Munchak.
This past season, though, Glasgow started most of the year at the right guard spot in Detroit. One of Glasgow's best qualities is the fact that the Broncos could start him anywhere on the interior and know that he should perform at a very high level.
In 2017, Glasgow started for the Lions at left guard for the season. The next year, he ended up getting moved to center and once again performed at an above-average level. This past season was his best in the NFL and he was moved once again to the right guard spot on the offensive line.
The fact that he has played three positions in three seasons and finished with increasingly good grades year-over-year shows the Broncos can plug and play him where they have their biggest need and know they will be getting a quality starter.
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3. Consistency on the Field
This past season, Glasgow gave up zero sacks for the year. Over the past two seasons, he has only surrendered one total sack. Considering he has been moved all over the offensive line, it just goes to show the quality of his play does not drop off.
Glasgow has been a very dependable player in both the run and pass game for the Lions. Detroit's offensive line has been in shambles for years but Glasgow has never been the problem.
To give you a bit of perspective of how big of a leap this is for the Broncos at the position, over the past two seasons, the team has given up 11 sacks at the right guard position alone.
4. The Yellow Flag
Another stat to show Glasgow's consistency on the field is the fact that he is rarely penalized. This past season, there were only three flags thrown on him. He is a very disciplined player that should only see improvements under the guiding hand of Coach Munchak.
The Broncos need a veteran that can lead this offensive line and Glasgow has proven throughout his football career he is one of the harder working players that only seems to get better by the season.
Overall, this signing should cause a lot of optimism among fans and the Broncos organization. Glasgow isn’t the biggest name out there but making sure your franchise quarterback is protected and will be given room to grow should be priority No. 1 this offseason, and this moves helps that cause.
The Broncos went into this offseason with questions at four of the offensive line positions. The team hasn't solved them all in signing Glasgow, but he is a nice jumping-off point in securing the trenches for the offense.