ORLANDO, Fla. -- The Denver Broncos were one of the league’s busiest teams when free agency opened earlier this month, with four of the high-profile signings.
So much so, that getting defensive end DeMarcus Ware, cornerback Aqib Talib, safety T.J. Ward and wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders signed, sealed and delivered kept John Elway away from some of his other appointed rounds.
And one of the biggest items that remains on the team's offseason to-do list is next in line -- talks for a contract extension for coach John Fox.
“We just haven’t had the time to really get to that,’’ said Elway, Broncos GM and executive VP of football operations, Monday at the NFL meetings. “That’s the next thing on the agenda.’’
Fox is set to enter the last year on his deal in the 2014 season. He signed a four-year deal worth an average of approximately $3 million a year when the Broncos hired him in 2011. Fox would have received a $1 million bonus had the Broncos won Super Bowl XLVIII last month, but Denver was bullied, 43-8, by the Seattle Seahawks.
Elway and Fox’s agent, Bob LaMonte, had some preliminary talks at the NFL scouting combine last month. But the Broncos’ leap into free agency kept Elway and Mike Sullivan, who handles the Broncos contracts, busy.
And as with most negotiations the two sides will try to find some common ground on the financial side. From their perspective the Broncos certainly like the three consecutive AFC West titles and Fox’s 34-14 records in regular-season games in Denver. Fox also brought some stability to the coaching side after a tumultuous two-year run of Josh McDaniels that included a videotaping scandal.
However, the Broncos have let quality championship opportunities slip through their fingers with a double-overtime loss to the Baltimore Ravens to close out the 2012 season to go with last month’s title-game rout.
Elway said he doesn’t expect any major hurdles in the negotiations in the coming weeks.
“I wouldn’t see any potential problems, bumps or anything like that,’’ Elway said. “Both sides want to get something done. In the end it always comes down to the thing it always comes down to, but we’ll get to work on that pretty soon.’’
Elway recently signed his own contract extension that takes him through the 2017 season and team president Joe Ellis said Elway had demonstrated “great vision and leadership’’ on the job.