Where do the Denver Broncos and Russell Wilson go from here?

With the Denver Broncos set to cut Russell Wilson, where do the two sides go from here?
Denver Broncos v Las Vegas Raiders
Denver Broncos v Las Vegas Raiders / Candice Ward/GettyImages

Honestly, I think the second the Denver Broncos benched Russell Wilson late in the 2023 NFL Season, the end of his time with the team was made clear. Where do the two sides go from here? For the Broncos, they are set to eat an NFL-record $85 million in dead cap, likely spreading that out over two seasons.

It's a huge move for the Broncos and Sean Payton, who showed progress in 2023 from their disastrous 2022 season. The team was 7-6 at one point and right on the cusp of a playoff spot, but a weak finish ultimately kept them out of the postseason for another year. Now, Wilson is set to be a free agent, free to sign with any team, and the Broncos will be left without a franchise QB on the roster.

Where does Russell Wilson sign?

Russell Wilson is not the QB he once was, but it's clear that he can still be effective. In 2023, Wilson racked up 29 total touchdowns and had just eight interceptions. There should be a team who'd be willing to take a chance on Wilson being able to do that again, and there are a few teams that the QB would provide an upgrade at.

You cannot tell me with a straight face that Kenny Pickett is better than Russell Wilson, so I think the Pittsburgh Steelers jump to the top of the list. The Las Vegas Raiders also have nothing at QB, so I think Vegas could be a realistic landing spot for the Super Bowl 48 champion.

The Broncos are still paying him nearly $40 million in 2024, so a team could sign Wilson to a very small contract in 2024, which could be a huge bonus.

Where do the Broncos go from here?

Well, I think it's obvious, right? The Denver Broncos should turn to the 2024 NFL Draft at this point. I think two of the best fits for the team would be JJ McCarthy or Bo Nix. The former may force Denver to trade up in the NFL Draft to draft him, but I think the Broncos could actually get away with trading down and drafting Nix.

One of those two feel like a very realistic scenarios to take snaps under center for the team in 2024 and beyond. I also think the Broncos would sniff around the idea of signing free agent QB Kirk Cousins, but they might not want to pay him a ton of money.

This is a massive offseason for Sean Payton, who now needs to put a viable QB plan in place after failing to make it work with Russell Wilson.