Joe Thomas nearly ended up as a Denver Bronco on Tuesday.
He didn't, but the too-close-to-call deadline deal should tell Ryan Clady to pack his bags.
The Broncos are already scheming ways to replace their injured franchise left tackle. He's due $19.5 million over the next two seasons — big money for a team committed to so many star veterans. And he just suffered his second major knee injury.
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The Browns' big draft pick demands made Thomas pricey, too. So the Broncos will take a wait-and-see approach with their blindside protector. That could include a pay cut request.
If Clady declines, they'll have a cheaper option available — rookie Ty Sambrailo, who'll be on his rookie deal for a few more seasons.