Veteran outside linebacker Von Miller is efficient. I don’t just mean in his playstyle and production, either. This guy was traded to the Los Angeles Rams on Nov. 2, 2021, and on Feb. 13, 2022, he won his second Super Bowl ring. He’s now also a free agent.
Miller had suffered a torn ACL prior to the 2020 season that kept him out for the entirety of it. The year before, in 2019, his production had tapered off a bit. And by tapered off, I mean he *only* had 8.0 sacks. He also amassed 20 quarterback hits and still made the Pro Bowl that year but for whatever reason, the Broncos had reason to trade him. He had 4.5 sacks across seven games in Denver before he was traded and then added an additional 5.0 sacks as a new member of the Rams.
Then, in the postseason, paired on the same defensive line with Aaron Donald, he really came alive, up to and including the Super Bowl, where he managed not one, but two sacks on Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow. It was a seven-sack effort by the Rams that helped doom Cincinnati as Los Angeles ran away with the Lombardi Trophy. Miller was instrumental in that and I have to think that L.A. will make a real push to re-sign him. The latest reports even say Miller wants to work things out with the Rams.
But how are we supposed to ignore this tweet?
Add in the fact that Miller has never changed his cover photo or Twitter bio from his Bronco days and this could be the easiest article I’ll ever write. The first team on this list has to be…
Miller never wanted the trade in the first place. He has spent his entire career in the orange and blue up a mile above sea level and whatever it is about that place agrees with him. He’s enjoyed eight Pro Bowl nods with three All-Pro accolades along with two Defensive Player of the Year awards and Defensive Rookie of the Year as a Bronco. On top of that, he won a Super Bowl with them. It’s safe to say Denver is where Miller’s heart is and with a new quarterback under center that makes them instant contenders and over $26 million in current cap space, it’s hard to imagine this deal doesn’t get done.
NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS
The Patriots let go of Kyle Van Noy and while their M.O. is usually to build through the draft, they saw success this last year adding in free agency. They could continue with that trend and add an instant playmaker in Miller that could help out Matthew Judon in the pass-rush load.
The Van Noy move was a little bit surprising given that the tandem of him and Judon helped net the Patriots 28.0 sacks in the regular season, which tied for seventh in the league. Miller would still likely be a boost for a Belichick defense that is usually pretty prideful in its pass rush.
All that being said… it’s still the Broncos.
GREEN BAY PACKERS
The Packers could use more pass-rushing help despite having two pretty productive linebackers this last year. Rashan Gary led the Pack with 9.5 sacks, while Preston Smith had 9.0. Green Bay also has Smith’s “brother,” Za’Darius, who sat out last season with injury, but the two of them are set to be free agents and keeping both doesn’t seem to be feasible with the cap trouble Green Bay is in on top of whatever monster contract extension Aaron Rodgers ends up signing.
Miller could be a significant piece of the Green Bay defense, which had just a 6.47% sack rate last season, good for 17th in the league. He could also be more cost-effective than the Smith brothers and with Gary still on his rookie contract, the Packers wouldn’t lose much in the way of pass-rushing linebacker production.
Again, all that being said. It’s Denver. For Miller, it was always Denver.