ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — Tim Patrick's impressive journey from undrafted receiver to NFL starter is just beginning.
And it will continue in Denver.
The Broncos agreed to terms on a three-year extension with Patrick that is slated to keep him in Denver through 2024, the team announced Saturday.
The new deal is yet another milestone for Patrick, who has defied expectations during his NFL career.
"Tim Patrick has worked incredibly hard to emerge as one of the top wide receivers in the NFL," General Manager George Paton said. "The perseverance Tim has shown to develop from an undrafted free agent to such a dependable and dynamic player is remarkable. We're thrilled to agree to terms with him on this well-deserved contract extension. The best is yet to come with Tim as such an important part of the Denver Broncos."
Patrick, after entering the league as a college free agent in 2017, spent time with the Ravens and 49ers before the Broncos signed him to their practice squad in 2017.
The Utah product made the Broncos' 53-man roster in 2018, and he quickly carved out a role as one of the team's valuable role players. He was a reliable special teams player and started four games at wide receiver as the Broncos transitioned to a new-look wide receiving corps. Patrick caught 23 passes for 315 yards and a touchdown that season, and his biggest play of the year may have come in Week 2. In a comeback win over the Raiders, Patrick caught a short pass from Case Keenum with 18 seconds to play and cut up field to set up a game-winning field goal.
Patrick appeared poised to take off in 2019, but he suffered an injury in the season opener against the Raiders that landed him on IR until Week 11. He returned to record 16 catches for 218 yards in just eight games that season.
The trajectory of Patrick's career, though, changed a season ago. Missing Courtland Sutton for the season, Patrick became perhaps the team's most-valuable receiver. In 15 games, Patrick caught an impressive 51 passes for 742 yards and a team-leading six receiving touchdowns. Patrick did not have a drop on the year, and he played his best in some of the team's biggest games. The 6-foot-4, 212-pound player posted three 100-yard games — all of which came in Denver wins — and he scored a pair of touchdowns in the Broncos' near upset win over the eventual AFC champion Chiefs.
Through the first 10 games of 2021, Patrick has offered much of the same for the Broncos. He ranks first on the team in touchdown receptions (four) and second in receiving yards (523) as he is again on pace to set new career marks. In Denver's upset win over the Cowboys, Patrick caught four passes for 85 yards and hauled in a 44-yard touchdown that gave Denver a two-possession lead.
Patrick's success already places him among the top undrafted receivers in team history. Patrick ranks fourth in team history in receiving yards among undrafted players, and he sits fifth in receptions and tied for sixth in receiving touchdowns.
Since the start of 2020, though, Patrick's production has been impressive regardless of his draft status. Patrick's 10 receiving touchdowns since the start of the 2020 season are four more than the next closest Bronco, and he ranks third among all undrafted receivers in touchdowns during that same time frame.
"I think Tim is a really good receiver — I always have," Head Coach Vic Fangio said after the team beat the Jets this season. "He caught the 50-50 balls and caught the balls inside the hash and inside the numbers — wrangled them. Tim's a damn good NFL receiver."
The Broncos will now have that damn good receiver as part of their wide-out group for the foreseeable future. Patrick, Jerry Jeudy and KJ Hamler are all under contract through at least 2023, and General Manager George Paton has also described Sutton as a core player.