The Broncos are a long removed from their Super Bowl run.
They may have finished 5-11 last year, but there are still signs of life from that defense. Their offense is abysmal, but the team finished in the top 10 of both passing yards and rushing yards allowed. In order to keep some of that talent in town, Denver is locking down one half of the best secondary of 2017.
Denver has exercised Chris Harris Jr.'s option, bringing the cornerback home for another year.
The Broncos have exercised the $1.1 million option on CB Chris Harris Jr.'s contract for 2018, per league source. He's back. #9sports— Mike Klis (@MikeKlis) March 8, 2018
Keeping both Harris and Aqib Talib seems unlikely, but they may have retained the better of the two in Harris.
The former undrafted free agent has paved his way to become one of the better players on the defense. He was All-Pro after the 2016 season and followed it up with two picks, seven deflections, and a forced fumble in 2017.
He may believe he's worth more than the deal that will pay him $8.5 million, including a $1.1 million bonus, but after Denver's unsuccessful campaign, the timing for a new deal wasn't right.
#Broncos CB Chris Harris- underpaid in current market avg 8.5M/y (Josh Norman: 15M/y). Harris has a $1M option bonus due 3/9. Source on team's reax to a pay raise request: "If ur asking for more $ & we're 5-11 thats 1st of all inappropriate & 2nd of all it's not going to happen."— Josina Anderson (@JosinaAnderson) March 1, 2018
Harris will have every chance to prove his worth this season. He'll likely become the team's top cornerback if Talib leaves, and will have the opportunity to lead a secondary to the postseason.
More moves have to be made in Denver, but fans can safely believe the secondary is locked down.