ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) — If the “No Fly Zone” is about to lose one of its pilots, Broncos coach Vance Joseph isn’t aware.
Joseph said Tuesday he hadn’t heard anything about T.J. Ward being on the trading block following a report from the NFL Network that the Broncos have been in talks about dealing the Pro Bowl strong safety who’s entering the final year of his contract.
“He’s one of our better players,” Joseph said. “So, I would be surprised.”
Ward practiced Monday and Tuesday after missing several weeks with a pulled hamstring but he isn’t expected to play Thursday night against Arizona.
Ward has been replaced in the starting lineup by second-year pro Justin Simmons, whom Joseph praised for playing well the last three weeks.
The Broncos also are high on fellow second-year safety Will Parks as well as Jamal Carter, an undrafted safety from Miami.
Ward is due $4.5 million in 2017, the final season of a four-year, $22.5 million deal he signed in 2014.
Ward has teamed with All-Pro cornerbacks Aqib Talib and Chris Harris Jr. along with nickel back Bradley Roby and free safety Darian Stewart to form the “No Fly Zone,” arguably the league’s top secondary.
By ARNIE STAPLETON, AP Pro Football Writer
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