Mothers, let your sons grow up to be defensive backs. The NFL showed the money to a number of DBs on the first day of free agency. A sampling:
T.J. Ward: joined the Broncos on a four-year deal worth $25 million ($14 million guaranteed).
Donte Whitner: got four years, $28 million from the Browns ($13 million guaranteed).
Vontae Davis: re-signed with the Colts for four years, $39 million ($20 million guaranteed).
Alterraun Verner: signed with the Bucs for four years, $26.5 million ($14 million guaranteed).
Jarius Byrd: couldn't turn down the Saints' offer of six years, $54 million ($28 million guaranteed).
And the latest defensive back to get a fat check is Aqib Talib. As ESPN's Adam Schefter first reported. Talib, a former Patriot, is joining the team that beat New England in the AFC Championship game, the Broncos. The cost is $57 million over six years with $26 million guaranteed.
It's a major loss for the Pats and a major gain for the Broncos, who seem to be building a very formidable defense through the market. Talib is a tall shutdown corner who is in the prime of his career -- he turned 28 in February. He has struggled to stay on the field due to injuries and a suspension in recent seasons, but he is one of the game's best at his position when he's focused and operating at 100 percent. It's a big-time improvement over the aged Champ Bailey.
Now that deals are done with Talib and Ward, one of the best safeties available, the Broncos have their sights set on defensive end DeMarcus Ware. Can you imagine he and Von Miller coming off the edges together?