John Elway (GM and Executive VP of Football Operations) and the Denver Broncos have practically wasted the past three to four years of linebacker Von Miller’s elite prime with shoddy roster moves — especially at the QB position — where the front office had no succession plan for a rapidly declining Peyton Manning.
It’s been a Mile High quarterback wasteland for the franchise ever since, but Miller’s game is still official like a name brand.
Soon to be Ram. The great Von Miller. He’s done some damage this year for Denver as he was the AFC defensive player of the month for September. Highlights below.
— RAMS ON FILM (@RamsOnFilm) November 1, 2021
During his tenure, Miller led a Broncos defense that always ranked around the top 10 to 15 units in the league.
The 32-year-old Miller has wanted out for a while, and as late as Saturday the team was still deciding whether or not they wanted to trade the greatest pass rusher in franchise history.
Now Miller is a member of the Los Angeles Rams. He is another veteran piece to fall in the Broncos’ rebuild.
Blockbuster: Broncos are finalizing a trade to send eight-time Pro Bowl linebacker Von Miller to the Los Angeles Rams in exchange for two second-day 2022 draft picks, league sources tell ESPN.
Miller is now saying his goodbyes to his friends in the Broncos’ training facility. pic.twitter.com/wJjlDOQkPU
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) November 1, 2021
The Denver Broncos haven’t been a contender since an aging Manning was the QB and helped guide a very average offense to their last Super Bowl win in 2015. It was also the last time the Broncos would advance to the big game.
Prior to that season, and ever since he was drafted by the Broncos, edge rusher Von Miller has been an elite defender.
Peyton Manning got the headlines, but Miller and the defense really were the driving force behind the Super Bowl run.
Miller’s Super Bowl MVP is proof as he dominated and stifled Cam Newton and the Panthers.
Miller showcased an array of skills, from pass rushing to stopping the run. He’s also a real thumper at setting the edge in the run game, to dropping into coverage and intercepting passes as he did against Tom Brady in that season’s AFC Championship Game.
Miller has always been an elite talent since he wreaked havoc on offenses down in College Station at Texas A&M.
The Broncos received second- and third-round picks for the future Hall of Famer.
Good Or Bad Move ?
There are always pros and cons to trading a franchise cornerstone such as Miller. From a business perspective, Denver moves an aging but productive player on an expiring contract for some quality draft picks.
The cons include losing his on-field production and locker room presence, which are always hard to replace. But this move had to be made and shows the Broncos are ready to fully begin their rebuild. Trading away their best player since John Elway to a contending team is the first step.
Supersized Defense | Rams Add Another Pass Rusher
The Los Angeles Rams are one of four teams — the others are the Cardinals, Packers, and Cowboys — with just one loss in the loaded NFC, leaving them in susceptible positions.
With QBs like Aaron Rodgers,Tom Brady, Dak Prescott and Kyler Murray all leading playoff and Super Bowl-contending teams, you’ll need to be able to get to the quarterback with your four down linemen.
The Rams defense features Aaron Donald and Jalen Ramsey, but after being outscored 22-0 in the fourth quarter of Sunday’s 38-22 win over the hapless and dysfunctional Texans, team brass felt they needed to make this move. L.A. is in win-now mode.
Von Miller now will join forces with Aaron Donald and Jalen Ramsey.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) November 1, 2021
With a thriving offense led by Matt Stafford, Miller gives an already solid defense a Hall of Fame-caliber jolt on the edge. Miller also enables Donald more freedom to be disruptive, as teams can’t double-team both of them effectively.
Miller Emotional After Trade
Miller has spent his entire professional career in the Mile High City, so naturally he was emotional with the trade, and he spoke with KMGH-TV following the news:
— Troy Renck (@TroyRenck) November 1, 2021
“I’ve been here through the ups and downs. It’s always tough when you have to leave. I love all of my fans. I love Broncos country. When I said, ‘Broncos for life’ I meant that. It was an honor and a privilege to play here … being able to play with Peyton Manning, DeMarcus Ware, Champ Bailey, Brian Dawkins, Tim Tebow … it’s an honor and a privilege.”
First look at @VonMiller in a Rams uniform 👀🔥
◻️ 8x Pro Bowler
◻️ 3x All-Pro
◻️ Super Bowl 50 MVP
◻️ 2011 DROY pic.twitter.com/x4l8gTtnHm
— The Athletic (@TheAthletic) November 1, 2021
Now Miller will look to do for the Rams and Donald what DeMarcus Ware did for a younger Miller and the Broncos when the pass-rushing terror left the Cowboys in 2015 and became a missing piece for the Broncos D.