Joe Flacco has gone from Denver nemesis to savior.
Baltimore reportedly has agreed to trade the quarterback, who has been with the Ravens since 2008, to the Broncos in exchange for a fourth-round pick in this year’s draft.
The deal, first reported by ESPN, cannot be officially announced until the start of the league year March 13.
Flacco, the MVP of the 2013 Super Bowl in which Baltimore beat the 49ers following a stunning win at top-seeded Denver, became expendable in Baltimore with the emergence of rookie Lamar Jackson, the Louisville alum who led the Ravens into the playoffs after Flacco got hurt.
The Broncos again needed an upgrade at QB after Case Keenum’s middling debut in Denver, where a 6-10 finish led general manager John Elway to turn to Vic Fangio, his fourth head coach in six seasons.
Now, Elway has landed his seventh quarterback since Peyton Manning’s tearful retirement following Denver’s win in Super Bowl 50.
The others all stumbled: draft picks Brock Osweiler, Trevor Siemian, Paxton Lynch and Chad Kelly, trade acquisition Mark Sanchez and Keenum, who threw for 18 TDs and a career-high 15 interceptions last season to go with a career-high 34 sacks.
Photo: Nick Wass / Associated Press
Image 1 1
Flacco has three years and $63 million left on his contract with a salary of $18.5 million next season, which is 10th highest in the NFL at his position.
49ers cut Gilliam: The 49ers released Garry Gilliam, which was an unsurprising move, given the backup offensive tackle’s contract.
Gilliam, 28, was scheduled to earn a $4.5 million base salary and count $5.05 million against the salary cap in 2019, which was the final season of the two-year extension he signed in 2018. None of Gilliam’s 2019 base salary was guaranteed.
Gilliam made one start in his two seasons with the 49ers. Last year, he played 84 offensive snaps while backing up Joe Staley and Mike McGlinchey. In 2017, Gilliam sustained a knee injury in his lone start and spent the final eight games on injured reserve.
“We would like to thank Garry for his contributions to the team the last two seasons,” general manager John Lynch said. “He filled in admirably when called upon and was a consummate teammate.”
The 49ers could turn to Shon Coleman to fill Gilliam’s role. Coleman, a 2015 third-round pick of the Browns, was acquired from Cleveland for a seventh-round pick in August when Gilliam was in his third week in the concussion protocol.
Coleman, 27, who started 16 games in Cleveland in 2017, was inactive for all 16 games with the 49ers last year.
— Eric Branch
Briefly: The Chargers will not pick up the $4 million option on defensive tackle Corey Liuget, an eighth-year lineman who was the longest-tenured player on Los Angeles’ defense. … Defensive end Steven Means signed a one-year contract extension with Atlanta after making four starts in 2018. … Detroit re-signed long snapper Don Muhlbach, keeping him on the roster for a 16th season.
This post was originally posted at https://www.sfgate.com/sports/article/Broncos-to-acquire-Joe-Flacco-from-Ravens-13615243.php.