ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (The Sports Xchange) – The Broncos could have gone into Sunday with a new left tackle. But in the end, the cost of acquiring eight-time Pro Bowler Joe Thomas was too much, and general manager John Elway and the Browns walked away from a potential trade just moments before the 4 p.m. ET deadline on Tuesday.
According to reports, the Broncos were set to surrender a 2017 first-round pick and a second- or third-round pick in exchange for Thomas and a fourth-round selection. But in the end, the Browns wanted more than the Broncos were willing to surrender.
That the Broncos walked away when the price grew too steep was no surprise. To make a panic deal – even with left tackle shredded by injuries to Ryan Clady and Ty Sambrailo this season – would have gone against Elway’s willingness to let players or opportunities walk when the price grew too steep to rationalize under the salary cap.
“If we have any opportunities to get better and we think that the compensation is fair, then we’re going to do everything that we can to do that,” Elway said Monday after the Broncos traded for tight end Vernon Davis.
“I think that we’re not going to mortgage the future to do it, but if we can add to our football team now and feel like it makes us better, we’re going to look at all opportunities like that.”
— Peyton Manning quickly dismissed the notion that going back to Indianapolis for the second time since he was released by the Colts in March 2012 had any special emotional significance for him.
“I think the fact that we have been there and played them – obviously we’re focused on this game, we’re playing in an extremely loud place, we’ve got a lot on our plate each week trying to figure out what we’re doing and trying to get everybody here on the same page,” Manning said. “That’s plenty to focus on.”
His teammates, however, view the matchup differently. In the wake of the 39-33 loss at Indianapolis in October 2013, they want to give Manning a win in his old stomping grounds – while also exacting a measure of revenge for their 24-13 defeat to the Colts in last year’s playoffs.
“Being able to get that win for him in Indy, that’s huge,” cornerback Chris Harris Jr. said. “It’s something that I know he probably wants very bad. He’ll never say it to y’all [in the media], he’ll never say it to us, but we know that he wants to go home and get a win.”
NOTES: QB Peyton Manning saw limited work Wednesday as the Broncos monitor his repetitions. He didn’t throw, but worked half the practice in “mostly the run game and checks,” coach Gary Kubiak said. … OLB Shane Ray continues to recover from a sprained MCL suffered Oct. 18 against the Browns. He has not practiced since then, but is expected to return later this month. … LT Ty Sambrailo officially went on injured reserve because of a torn labrum. Sambrailo did not play in October after suffering the injury against Detroit, but he attempted to practice for three weeks before being shut down. He is scheduled to undergo surgery in the coming days. … OLB Shaquil Barrett did not practice Wednesday because of a toe injury. Barrett was on hand for the practice without a helmet, but is expected to take part in Thursday’s work. … WR Jordan Norwood did not practice Wednesday to be at his wife’s side as she gives birth. Norwood suffered a hamstring injury suffered in practice Oct. 30 and “probably wouldn’t have practiced anyway,” Kubiak said. … DE Derek Wolfe was the AFC Defensive Player of the Week for his performance against the Packers. Wolfe had seven tackles, including one for a loss, and defused the Packers’ running game, making Green Bay’s offense one-dimensional.