The contract negotiations between the Denver Broncos and star defender Von Miller took a strange turn Thursday.
Miller and the Broncos have been trying to negotiate a lucrative, long-term deal since the Broncos gave Miller the one-year, $14 million franchise tag to hold onto him this offseason.
After Miller turned down a six-year, $114 million contract offerdue to the relatively small $39 million in guaranteed money over the first two years, reports said Miller would threaten to sit out the season if he and the Broncos couldn't come to a long-term deal.
Miller added fuel to the fire Thursday when he posted an Instagram with the caption, "'I love my Teammates, Coaches, and My Fans' but there is 'No Chance' I play the 2016 season under the Franchise tag."
It's unclear why Miller put quotes around "I love my Teammates, Coaches, and My Fans," and "No Chance."
A photo posted by Von Miller (@vonmiller) on Jun 16, 2016 at 9:02am PDT
Miller's Instagram follows an appearance on Chelsea Handler's new Netflix show in which he addressed the contract negotiations and said he would like a little more "stability" in a long-term deal.
When Handler asked if Miller would sit out the season to get a better contract, Miller said, "No, I mean, I feel like... we still have a month [until training camp]. I just can't see myself with another team."
Miller's Instagram could just be a negotiating tactic to push the Broncos to make a more lucrative offer, but ultimately, sitting out could earn him a bigger contract. If Miller were to sit out the 2016 season, the Broncos' best option for retaining him would be to offer the nonexclusive franchise tag, which allows other teams to submit contract offers. The Broncos would then either have to match the offer or let Miller walk. As one of the best pass-rushers in the NFL, teams would jump at the chance to offer Miller as much money as possible.
It's an unlikely scenario, but it seems as if Miller means business in these negotiations.