Mark Schlereth Shares Thoughts on the Broncos’ Offseason Moves

Mark Schlereth

Getty Mark Schlereth looks on prior to a 2019 game between the Detroit Lions and the Arizona Cardinals.

The Denver Broncos have had a rough offseason, made worse by the March 7 release of star safety Justin Simmons.

Former Broncos’ Pro Bowl offensive guard Mark Schlereth took to “The Pat McAfee Show” and felt the team’s offseason moves were long overdue. 

“For eight years this place has been garbage,” Schlereth said on the March 7 episode. “The Denver Broncos were a crown jewel in the National Football League and they’re not, they’re irrelevant. We keep putting Band-Aids on things and think that’s going to fix it.”

Putting Band-Aids on things has been the Broncos’ specialty since Peyton Manning’s retirement after the 2015 season. Since winning the 2016 Super Bowl, Denver has amassed a 52-79 record and has missed the postseason in eight consecutive seasons.

Schlereth thanked head coach Sean Payton for “recognizing that this team is not very good” in hopes that the organization can finally move forward.

“So ultimately, it is time to quit putting Band-Aids on gaping wounds and it’s time to perform some surgery. I think that’s exactly what Sean Payton’s doing,” Schlereth said.

Schlereth Speaks Out on Broncos Cutting Russell Wilson & Justin Simmons

Aside from the Simmons news, the Broncos informed Wilson that he will be released at the start of the NFL league year on March 13.

Schlereth was not sad to see his old team move on from the nine-time Pro Bowler, calling Wilson a “deficient quarterback” in the process.

“He’s diminished,” Schlereth said on the March 7 episode of “The Pat McAfee Show.” “He doesn’t throw the ball in the middle of the football field, he doesn’t anticipate throws. You can sit here and tell me all day long, 26 TDs and eight interceptions. I’ll tell you garbage numbers. Like the things he does, he’s just not good enough anymore.”

The three-time Super Bowl champion discussed Simmons next and understood the defender was a “cap casualty.”

“Look at the market right now for safeties. There are 15 safeties out there right now that you’re going to get for less money and that you’re probably to get more years than you will from Justin Simmons,” Schlereth said.

Simmons was a Second-team All-Pro last season and led the NFL with six interceptions in 2022. More tough days are likely ahead as the Broncos get into the thick of the offseason.

Shannon Sharpe Opens Up on Broncos’ Fallout With Wilson: ‘Match Made in Hell’

Schlereth was hardly the only former Broncos player to chime in on what is happening with the organization.

Sharpe voiced his thoughts about the “match made in hell” between Wilson and Payton on the March 5 episode of ESPN’s “First Take.” 

“[Payton] never, ever, gave Russ a second chance to win him over,” Sharpe told colleagues Stephen A. Smith and Robert Griffin III. “He came in with this ideology, he’s like, ‘how could you?’ This is not team building. Players do not separate themselves from others, and it rubbed him the wrong way.”

The Hall of Fame tight end blamed Wilson for coming to Denver with the wrong attitude. However, Sharpe directed most of his ire toward the front office after the failed tenure of former head coach Nathaniel Hackett.

“I think Russ needs this, and the Broncos need this. But, Russ didn’t live up to his obligation, and I think the Broncos organization failed Russ in the beginning by hiring [Hackett] that had no business being a head coach or his offensive coordinator,” Sharpe said.

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