Posted Wed Apr 11th by Jon Heath
The Denver Broncos on Wednesday agreed to terms with veteran defensive tackle Justin Bannan, according to Mike Klis of the Denver Post. The signing adds depth to Denver’s defensive tackle position.
Terms of the one-year deal are not yet known. Mile High Sports’ Brandon Spano speculates that Bannan signed a veteran player minimum contract and that the signing will not change Denver’s draft plans.
Bannan (6-3, 312 pounds), known as a great locker room player, is returning to Denver after spending the 2010 season with the Broncos and last season in St. Louis. At age 32, Bannan’s productivity in the league has come later in his career as he has started 20 games over the past two seasons after starting in only 27 games during his first eight seasons in the NFL.
Last season, Bannan recorded 31 tackles and forced a fumble. In 2010 — with the Broncos — Bannan recorded 35 tackles, a sack and a forced fumble as a member of Denver’s defensive line.
Defensive tackle remains Denver’s biggest position of need and the team has been targeting several players at the position. Besides preparing for the draft and the potential defensive tackle prospects, the team also courted Amobi Okoye (who signed with the Buccaneers on Saturday) and have the option of re-signing Marcus Thomas.
The team appears to be ready to move on from Thomas however, as the Sports Exchange points out, Thomas does not fit Defensive Coordinator Jack Del Rio‘s 4-3 defensive scheme and only become a starter last off-season when fellow defensive tackles Kevin Vickerson and Ty Warren went down with injuries — and both those players will be back this season. Thomas would like to return to Denver, but the team seemingly isn’t interested at this time.
Joining Bannan as the eight defensive tackles on Denver’s roster are Ben Garland, Jeremy Jarmon, Ryan McBean, Sealver Siliga, Mitch Unrein, Kevin Vickerson and Ty Warren. The team is expected to add at least one more defensive tackle through the draft later this month.
This was a good depth signing for the Broncos. Do you approve of the move?