Posted Fri Mar 5th by Monty
Free agency opened at 12:01 a.m. ET Friday, and the Denver Broncos wasted no time lining up linemen for workouts.
Cleveland Browns center/guard Rex Hadnot and Baltimore Ravens defensive lineman Justin Bannan highlight a crop of unrestricted free agents scheduled to visit Denver Friday, according to multiple reports. The Broncos do not have a starting-caliber center on their roster after releasing Casey Wiegmann in February, and Bannan boasts 310 lbs. of run-stuffing experience, having enjoyed being a part of the Ravens’ tenacious defensive line rotation with Haloti Ngata and Kelly Gregg.
The Denver Post reports that San Francisco 49ers tackle Tony Pashos has scheduled a visit, while the National Football Post reports that another Ravens defensive lineman, Dwan Edwards, is garnering interest from the Broncos.
The NFP also reports that Philadelphia Eagles DE Jason Babin is drawing interest from several teams, including — you guessed it — the Broncos.
Finally, Miami Dolphins cornerback Nathan Jones rounds out the scheduled visits reported thus far. The Broncos’ interest in Jones makes sense: they found success fleecing the Dolphins’ secondary in the 2009 free agency, signing S Renaldo Hill and CB Andre Goodman. The two combined for 31 starts in 2010.
It’s clear the Broncos’ focus is in the trenches as free agency begins; Jones is the only known player visiting who isn’t an offensive or defensive lineman.
The most significant contributors to the Broncos last year weren’t newcomers from the draft or trade; they came from free agency. Josh McDaniels is showing he isn’t afraid to tap into this resource, even in 2010’s relatively shallow market. Keep it locked here for news of signings throughout the weekend.