One of the Denver Broncos‘ weapons on offense has moved on to a new destination. The New York Jets announced Wednesday night that they have signed the Broncos’ No. 2 receiver in Eric Decker to a five-year deal worth up to $36.25 million, $15 million of which is guaranteed money. He will most likely become the Jets’ No. 1 guy in New York.
With Decker departing from Denver, the question is now how does the organization fill the shoes as big as Decker’s? He set career numbers last year with 87 receptions for over 1,000 yards and 11 touchdowns. He has amassed 24 touchdowns in the last two years with the Broncos alone. Those numbers make it somewhat challenging to find a wideout who can produce at that same rate. Andre Caldwell looks to be the guy right off the bat, but how well will he perform when he gets the playing time is one major question that enters my mind.
The Broncos could look at free agency, but there aren’t a lot of wideouts remaining in the field that could be of much help. The only player to be linked to the Broncos in rumors is former Carolina Panthers wideout Brandon LaFell. However, his numbers do not fit the bill as a wideout who could play alongside Demaryius Thomas as he only had 49 catches all year and five touchdowns in 2013. Perhaps as a third wideout he could help the team, but not as a No. 2 guy.
The Broncos’ best interest in filling the shoes of Decker is probably in the draft. The two names that could possibly draw interest from the Broncos are Vanderbilt wideout Jordan Matthews and Ole Miss receiver Donte Moncrief. Both players show a lot of promise and could transition to the NFL quickly.
It will not be an easy task to replace a player as great as Decker was for the Broncos, but fans must know that football is also a business. Hopefully Decker will get his chance to show the league what he can really do. As for the Broncos, the search to replace a great weapon begins.