La Canfora says new Broncos GM George Paton won’t want to see one of Denver’s best players leave with no compensation in his first months on the job and the tag gives Denver until July 15 to work out an extension.
The Broncos tagged Simmons last season after the two sides weren’t able to come to a long-term agreement and he played out 2020 on the $11.545 million tender. The NFL’s highest-paid safety is Budda Baker of the Cardinals at $14.75 million a year, and that’s likely the bar Simmons is seeking.
A second tag will cost the Broncos $13.729 million fully guaranteed for the 2021 season.
Simmons, 27, is a former third-round pick of the Broncos out of Boston College back in 2016. He played out the final year of his four-year, $3.02 million rookie contract that included a $645,420 signing bonus and was franchise-tagged by the Broncos in 2020.
Simmons is now in line to once again be an unrestricted free agent in 2021.
In 2020, Simmons started all 16 games and recorded 96 tackles, one fumble recovery, five interceptions and nine pass breakups. Pro Football Focus had him rated as the No. 8 safety out of 94 qualifying players.
We have him listed in our Top 50 2021 NFL Free Agents list.