Sunday, February 25, 2024

7-8 Broncos QB Wilson disputes benching

Broncos QB Russell Wilson has said that Denver were talking about benching him if he didn’t rework his contract back in the teams bye week.

“They definitely told me I was going to be benched and all that,” Wilson said. “That whole bye week I didn’t know what was going to be the case. I was going to be ready to play, I wanted to go to Buffalo and beat Buffalo [Nov. 13]. … I wasn’t going to remove the injury guarantee, this game is such a physical game, I’ve played 12 years and all that.”

“We got to 3-5, beat the Chiefs … [it] definitely hurt, a low blow,” he said.

“Those are good teams, we did it, we fought. It was challenging [to keep playing]. It’s challenging, at the same time I’ve got a job to do … at the end of the day you put your head down and stay focused.”

“I want to be able to play, I want to be able to help this team win. … I know every time I step on the field it’s a physical game. I never play timid; I never play scared.”


Broncos head coach Sean Payton denied the accusations saying he had “nothing to do” with contract negotiations.

“I’m not privy to any of those [discussions], I’m handling the football,” Payton said Friday. “That’s something with George and the front office, I’m not involved in any of that, certainly I’m involved in a lot and there will be a time and place at the end of the season that maybe some of the questions that you may have someone else will be able to answer.”

He later added: “I know how this has been written, but this decision is strictly what I believe gives us a chance to win No. 8. Hard decision … there will be no other reasons.”

Is it likely that Payton came out of retirement to coach the Broncos and doesn’t have a hand in contracts for players, particularly the teams most important asset in their QB? Obviously not. So Payton has really dug a silly hole for himself in denying any knowledge of it. Clearly he didn’t learn much from bounty gate about secrets coming out in the wash.

While the Broncos continue to be a mess and will have to have a cheap option at QB next year, Payton will be hoping that Stidham, or that new cheap QB, will be able to play well enough for him to keep his job through 2024.

Wilson reiterated that he wants to stay a Bronco for the long haul. “I hope that it’s here, I hope that it’s here for a long time,” he said Friday. “I hope we win some more silverware in the front hall and we get some more championships, and if it’s not here, I’ll be prepared to do that somewhere else, but I hope that it’s here. I genuinely mean that, I brought my family here and everything else.”

It seems unlikely the Broncos are looking to stick with Wilson, but given his contract this could be a saga that drags on well into the new NFL year.

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