“I’m very optimistic about the whole thing,” Miller told reporters. “I remain optimistic about everything.”
Even Broncos HC Gary Kubiak confirmed that progress has been made in recent days, per James Palmer. Kubiak added that he would love to see Miller at minicamp on Tuesday, but understands the situation.
This is at least a positive sign after recent reports said that the two sides weren’t at all close to an agreement on a long-term extension, and could be as much as $20 million apart in a five-year deal.
Miller is believed to be targeting as much as $110 million in total over the course of five years, which would leave him as the highest paid defensive player in the NFL.
The two sides have until July to negotiate a long-term or Miller will end up playing out the year under the franchise tag and be in position to test the free agent market again in 2017.
Miller, 26, is a former first-round pick of the Broncos back in 2011. After playing out his rookie deal, Denver picked up his fifth-year option and later used their franchise tag on Miller this offseason.
He’s now in line to make $15.701 million fully guaranteed for the 2016 season. However, this won’t prevent them from negotiating a long-term deal that would reduce this figure and offer them some additional cap space.
In 2015, Miller appeared all 16 games and recorded 35 tackles, 11 sacks, three fumble recoveries and four forced fumbles. Pro Football Focus has him rated as the No. 2 outside linebacker in a 3-4 defense out of 53 qualifying players.
We’ll have more regarding a long-term contract for Miller as the news is available.