Broncos set to sign Cardinals DL Zach Allen, source says

Denver started the day signing offensive players left and right, then turned its attention to defense late in the day.

After locking up their leading tackler from 2022, linebacker Alex Singleton, to a three-year deal, the Broncos then came to an agreement with Arizona defensive lineman Zach Allen on a three-year deal, a league source confirmed to The Post. ESPN reported the deal is worth $45.75 million and comes with $32.5 million guaranteed.

Allen is essentially a replacement for Dre’Mont Jones, the defensive lineman who spent the first four years of his career with the Broncos. Jones on Monday agreed to a three-year deal with Seattle that, according to NFL Network, checked in similar to Allen’s. Jones’ deal is worth $51.53 million and pays him $23.5 million in the first year, according to NFL Network.

Allen (6-foot-4, 281 pounds) has played all four years of his pro career under new Broncos defensive coordinator Vance Joseph, making this a reunion for the pair.

Joseph saw Allen make 13 starts and put together career-best numbers in 2022. Allen accumulated 5.5 sacks and 12 quarterback knock-downs and 10 tackles for loss to go along with 47 total tackles.

“They’re a little more attacking, a little more aggressive. They get up the field,” general manager George Paton said of Joseph’s style during the NFL Combine recently. “I do feel our defensive line fits that mold. We watched a lot of tape with Vance and he has a vision for our defensive line and some of the pieces we have up front. I think our outside ’backers are athletic and they can rush the passer.

“You can ask Vance, but he feels like our defensive front really fits what he does.”

Now Joseph also has a lineman whose skillset he knows well.

For his career, Allen has 11.5 sacks, all but two of which have come over the past two seasons.

Allen was a regular for the Cardinals this year, playing 79% of the snaps in the 13 games that he played. He missed the final four games of the 2022 season, including Arizona’s 24-15 loss in Denver on Dec. 18, due to a hand injury.

When considering Allen as a replacement for Jones, the Broncos essentially addressed their two biggest free-agent question marks on defense during the first day negotiations were allowed.

The other, of course, is Singleton, who agreed earlier in the day to a deal worth up to $18 million with half guaranteed.

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