Over the Cap's valuation metric is one way to examine how much value the Denver Broncos are gleaning from their players under contract. I talked about the valuation after Week 1, and with one-fourth of the season in the books, it's worth looking at this metric again.
OTC is posting each week's valuation for players, but on each player's page, it has included the player's overall valuation for the season. I'll look at that metric to see where the Broncos are getting the most bang for their buck.
If you want to look at the Week 4 valuations, you may find them here, but keep in mind, they're based only on last week's games. You can click on each player's page to see the individual valuation.
Here are the takeaways from OTC player valuations.
Garett Bolles, LT: It's taken a couple of years, but the Broncos are now getting the return on the investment of that first-round pick contract. Bolles, who is getting a $1.9M base salary this season, is valued at $18.6M.
We know that the Broncos declined the fifth-year option and Bolles, so far, is making them pay. The rest of the season will tell if Bolles keeps playing well and if the Broncos are prepared to sign him to a new deal.
Bryce Callahan, CB: My thought was that if Callahan had stayed healthy last season and played well, Broncos fans would call his a contract a bargain, rather than grumbling about the money spent.
This season, with Callahan healthy and getting a $3.5M roster bonus, plus a $1.25M base salary and $2M in incentives, he's delivered a value of $14.9M. While not every game has gone Callahan's way, it's evident why a healthy Callahan can deliver a great return on investment.
Alexander Johnson, ILB: He's getting a $750,000 base salary and delivering $14.9M in value this season. Again, not every game has gone Johnson's way, but he's giving the Broncos an excellent return on investment.
Johnson will be a restricted free agent in 2021, but it will be interesting to see if the Broncos think about an extension for him, if he can deliver consistent play the rest of the season.
Shelby Harris, DE: After not finding any offers to his liking in free agency this past offseason, Harris agreed to a one-year, $3.25M deal to return to the Broncos.
Now that he's taking a bigger role, he's delivered a valuation of $13.3M through four games. It makes you wonder if 2021 might be the year he finally cashes in on free agency.
Bradley Chubb, OLB: He broke out against the Jets, a good sign that he is more confident after tearing his ACL. The result is he's delivering on his contract.
Chubb received a $2.3M roster bonus and a $750,000 base salary and is delivering a valuation of $16.6M. The Broncos have him under contract for another year and, if Chubb keeps playing well, exercising his fifth-year option will be a no-brainer.
Tim Patrick, WR: Called upon to step up after Courtland Sutton's season-ending injury, Patrick has delivered. He's under the exclusive right free agent tender for $750,000 and has delivered a valuation of $9.7M.
Patrick's play thus far may be getting the Broncos to think about using the second-round restricted free agent tender on him for 2021.
Josey Jewell, ILB: He was off to a slow start to the season, but had a great outing against the Jets. He's making a $750,000 salary and is delivering $7.4M in valuation.
We'll see if Jewell can continue improving. The more he does, the better the return on investment the Broncos get.
Noah Fant, TE: The second-year player had a strong start to the season, but hasn't seen as much production in more recent games and will now miss time with an ankle injury.
Still, he's delivering $9.1M in valuation while making a salary of $1.1M in 2020. Once he gets healthy, we'll see if he can keep delivering.
Mike Purcell, DT: The Broncos gave Purcell a three-year extension and he's been a steady performer this season. He's delivering $6.6M in valuation under the $3.25M second-round tender.
We'll know more about the contract once the structure is revealed, but Purcell will get more opportunities this season to prove he's worthy of that extension.
Melvin Gordon, RB: I was among those who called Gordon overpaid when the Broncos gave him $9M this season in the form of his $4M signing bonus, $4M roster bonus and $1M base salary.
But Gordon is getting results that give him a valuation of $9.1M. He is playing at a level that strengthens arguments that he's worth the money — and the more he does this, the more he's going to make me eat crow.
Not Enough Value
Justin Simmons, S: He's playing under the $11.4M franchise tag and delivering $6.7M in valuation. Through four games, he hasn't lived up to the tag.
However, part of that is because of a bad game against the Buccaneers. There are still 12 games ahead for him to improve and, thus, justify a big contract.
Graham Glasgow, RG: He got a $12M signing bonus and a $2.5M base salary for 2020. But he's had a slow start to the season, perhaps because of the ankle sprain he suffered in training camp.
He's only giving the Broncos $5M in valuation so far, but hopefully, he can improve, particularly as the offensive line learns to play better as a unit.
Kareem Jackson, S: He's earning an $11M base salary this season, but he isn't playing as well as did last year and is giving the Broncos $5.1M in valuation.
Jackson is a good fit for Vic Fangio's scheme and is loved by his teammates, but he will need to play better or the Broncos might cut him after the season.