The Broncos recently finalized its 53-man roster for the 2017 season, and one of the players who didn't make the cut was safety T.J. Ward. The decision surprised many, including Ward and some of his teammates. The Broncos opted to part ways with Ward to allow more playing time for their recent draft picks and younger players, but there's a strong chance the team will miss his veteran leadership, not to mention his defensive acumen. A three-time Pro Bowl player, Ward played the past three seasons in Denver and recorded a combined 224 tackles, 22 passes defended, 5 forced fumbles, 5 quarterback sacks, and three interceptions.
The 30-year-old was unhappy with the timing of his release, as it came a week prior to the start of the season. However, he wasn't a free agent for long, as he signed a one-year, $5 million contract the following day with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, where he will join an improved backfield along with Brent Grimes and Vernon Hargreaves.