BRONCOS

Broncos pick up pricey option on Pat Surtain II, still no extension

Apr 23, 2024, 1:59 PM | Updated: 2:04 pm

The Denver Broncos keep saying Pat Surtain II isn’t going anywhere anytime soon and on Tuesday they put some ink to paper on the matter—picking up the star defender’s fifth-year player option, according to ESPN.

A two-time Pro Bowler and former All-Pro cornerback, PS2 has been great for the Broncos in his first three seasons. That success qualifies him among the highest class of eligible players for a fifth-year option, meaning a payday of $19.8 million for the 2025 season. That’s nearly what PS2 will have made up to that point of his NFL career, slated to only make about $5.2 million this coming fall. Denver had until May 2, to make a decision on PS2’s deal and it wasn’t one of not wanting him rather seeing about an extension or playing out his rookie contract through the options.

Surtain, 23, was drafted by Broncos general manager George Paton at No. 9 in the 2021 NFL Draft and has quickly blossomed into one of the top cornerbacks in the league.

Surtain had another very solid year for Denver in 2023, recording 12 passes defended, an interception and 69 total tackles. He also had notable performances against the likes of Davante Adams, Stefon Diggs and Amari Cooper, holding all of them to two catches or fewer in Weeks 1, 10 and 11 respectively.

“We’ll look into it, we have a lot going on before that,” Paton said before free agency opened about PS2’s contract “We have free agency, the draft. Pat is gonna be here and obviously, we value him.”

There was some rumors of a PS2 trade since he is the team’s best chip and if the team is willing to move heaven and earth to get a much-needed quarterback, it may come down to dealing Surtain. That is still true even with Tuesday’s news.

“We’re all big fans of Pat,” Paton, said at the end-of-season press conference about six weeks ago. “We’re going to have a big meeting in a couple of weeks, and kind of go through the entire roster for Pat included. But we want Pat here for a long time. I’m not prepared to make any statements on anything moving forward.”

It does seem unlikely that Denver would move on from the All-Pro corner given seven teams tried to deal for him at the deadline and the Broncos balked. PS2 is really cheap against the cap this season for his level of play, making for a huge trade target for Super Bowl contenders. After the 2025 option, PS2 will be an unrestricted free agent, though the Broncos could franchise tag him for the 2026 season.

If it does come to extension talks and perhaps eventually tearing up the 2025 option, there are some good comps for Ps2. The most recent cornerback to get a big contract was Trevon Diggs, who got $97 million over five years from Dallas last offseason. Diggs was in a similar situation to Surtain, getting the deal before entering his fourth season, though because he was a second-round pick the Cowboys didn’t have the option to pick up a fifth year on his rookie contract. Packers standout corner Jaire Alexander is the highest-paid player at the position in the league, making $21 million a year. Green Bay skipped the former first-round pick’s fifth-year option and gave him $84 million over four seasons back in 2022.

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