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Elway hopeful Broncos can agree to long-term deal with Justin Simmons in 2021 offseason


ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — Despite not working out a long-term deal with safety Justin Simmons ahead of July 15's franchise tag deadline, President of Football Operations/General Manager John Elway reaffirmed Tuesday the team's desire to keep Simmons in Denver.

"Hopefully, with what we think of Justin, we can get something done next year in the offseason," Elway said during his virtual media availability as the Broncos began training camp. "We'd like to make him a Bronco for a long time, because he's the type of person we want, as I said before this league year started. [It's] unfortunate that it didn't work out."

The Broncos are eligible to continue working on a long-term contract extension with Simmons following the final regular-season game of 2020. Simmons must play this upcoming season on the one-year franchise tag.

Elway, reflecting on the team's negotiations with Simmons, said the Broncos had concerns about how the salary cap could be impacted in future years and how much guaranteed money the team wanted to commit.

"That was a concern with all the unknowns that we had," Elway said.

Elway also added the two parties' desired contract numbers were "far apart."

Simmons, a fifth-year player, returns to Denver for his second year in Head Coach Vic Fangio's system. In 2019, Simmons posted a career-high four interceptions and 15 passes defensed.

He was named a second-team All-Pro following the 2019 season.

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