ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- Denver Broncos general manager George Paton promised during the offseason that he would give serious attention to signing the team's impending free agents.
He has continued that trend during the bye week, as wide receiver Tim Patrick and the Broncos have agreed to a three-year extension, the team announced Saturday.
Patrick's extension is worth $30 million and could top out at $34.5 million if he hits all the incentives in the deal, sources said. The deal will also include just over $18 million in guarantees.
It is the next step in the continued transformation of Patrick from a practice squad member in 2017 who caught the coaches' collective eye, as well as his teammates', to one of the Broncos' most reliable, high-performing players.
Patrick leads the Broncos with four touchdown receptions and is second in receiving yards (523) and third in catches (37). And he consistently wins the ball in traffic and has rarely had a dropped pass, including none this season, in his four years on the active roster.
Patrick battled injuries in college and signed with the Baltimore Ravens as an undrafted rookie in 2017. He was waived during training camp that year and claimed by the San Francisco 49ers and then waived by the 49ers early in the 2017.
Patrick spent most of the remainder of the 2017 season on the Broncos' practice squad and has been on the roster for the last four seasons. Earlier this year Broncos coach Vic Fangio was asked about Patrick's ascension into a prominent role in the offense and said:
"His toughness, he wins the ball ... I've always just thought Tim Patrick was just a hell of a receiver.''
In the offseason, the Broncos signed safety Justin Simmons to a long-term deal, as well as defensive end Shelby Harris.
At the time Paton said: "It's also nice to reward your own and get them to the second contract. ... There will be others. It's really nice to reward players that deserve it.''
The Broncos are poised to have plenty of salary-cap room in the coming offseason -- some projections put them among the top four teams in predicted available space -- and already have 11 draft picks. Wide receiver Courtland Sutton, linebacker Alexander Johnson, cornerback Bryce Callahan and quarterback Teddy Bridgewater will be among their most notable free agents.