Posted Tue Mar 12th by Jon Heath
With Elvis Dumervil and his $12 million salary likely headed out of Denver, the Broncos are currently shopping for a replacement at defensive end.
It is widely expected that Dwight Freeney will land with the team, while Osi Umenyiora provides another option. The team was also reportedly interested in Paul Kruger, who eventually landed in Cleveland to the tune of $40 million.
But aside from likely bringing in a free agent to replace Dumervil, the team is probably counting on a pair of defensive ends already on the roster to step up in 2013. This summer, Robert Ayers and Jason Hunter will get a chance to earn more playing time.
Ayers has been a disappointment in Denver for most of his career, but he has improved against the run in recent seasons. Meanwhile, Hunter missed all of last season with a triceps tear before quietly recording 82 tackles, 4.0 sacks, 2 forced fumbles and an interception in his last 14 starts (32 games) with the team.
Hunter (29) is a 6′-4″, 271-pound versatile defender that has played both defensive end and outside linebacker in his career. The Broncos will likely increase his role on defense in 2013 if Dumervil does not return.