First, I'd like to say that I was wrong in saying that Dre Bly's release will save the Broncos money. According to Bill Williamson of ESPN, the Broncos actually lose money in this deal. Approximately $2.6 million. The reason for this is because Bly has $9 million dollars caught up in dead money. Which is $2.6 million more than what his base salary was expected to be in 2009. And that is where the difference is. Regardless, the Broncos still have plenty of room to manuever and make plenty deals this offseason.
Moving forward, I took the time to look at some possible suitors that could replace Bly next season. Obviously the Broncos want to get younger at the position. So that takes recently released cornerback, Chris McAlister out of the equation. So I continued to look through the list of free agent cornerbacks that are scheduled to hit the open market in a week and a half.
And I saw two names that intrigued me.
Ronald Bartell(Bill Williamson actually mentioned him in his article about Bly's cap impact), and Dunta Robinson.
Robinson has an outstanding rookie campaign and has really fell off since then, not being the same player. But is still a very solid and young corner that can get better. Bartell, on the other hand, has been improving every year and could really be the sleeper of this free agency class. While he only nabbed 3 interceptions this past season(Which is more than any Bronco defender did), he had a phenomenal amount of pass deflections, accounting for 19. He is really an up and coming player in this league and I'd be ecstatic if the Broncos ended up bringing him in.
Another possible suitor could be cornerback Lito Sheppard, who could be available via trade this offseason, however I don't see McDaniels trading away his draft picks this year. If anything, he'll strive to aquire more.
But we will see. With this move, and the lack of depth at the cornerback position, one thing is for certain and that is the fact that the Broncos will be in the market for a cornerback in the free agency period. And seeing that it's clear that the Broncos want youth at the postion, I also wouldn't count out the possibility of a midround pick used on a cornerback.