One year ago, then-Denver Broncos head coach Josh McDaniels traded his star wide receiver, Brandon Marshall, to the Miami Dolphins for two second-round draft picks, one in 2010 and the other in 2011. Marshall immediately signed a contract with the Dolphins for four years, $47 million. How have things worked out for both teams so far?
For the Dolphins, their wide receiver corps was instantly upgraded, and by year's end Marshall had the team's first 1,000-receiving yard season (1,014) since 2005 (Chris Chambers, 1,118). But with inconsistent play from Chad Henne, a brief Chad Pennington era and a brief Tyler Thigpen era, Marshall failed to record 100 receptions for the fourth season in a row.
As for the Broncos, it was probably best to move on from Marshall. While he certainly deserved a big pay day for his production over the previous three seasons, there were too many other problems surrounding him. Whether it was stupidly slipping on a McDonald's wrapper and falling into a TV or his much more serious legal troubles (domestic violence, misdemeanor battery, a DUI, disorderly conduct), the atmosphere they created did not mesh with what Josh McDaniels was trying to do (or even Mike Shanahan before him, but then McDaniels wasn't fitting in with the Broncos either).
As it turned out, the Broncos didn't select any player with the 2010 second-round pick they received. Instead, the Broncos packaged that pick (43rd overall), a third-rounder and a fourth-rounder for the Baltimore Ravens 25th overall pick to take quarterback Tim Tebow. Three picks earlier the team selected wide receiver Demaryius Thomas.
The jury is still out on both of them. Thomas missed portions of the season due to injury and caught 22 passes for 283 yards in 10 games. Tebow, meanwhile, played in nine games and started the last three of the season. He and the Broncos went 1-2 in those three starts. Tebow is currently not the starter for the Broncos and the team may even look at drafting a quarterback at some point in the upcoming draft.
One year later it is still hard to come to any definitive conclusions on this trade. While the Broncos removed the iffy character of Marshall from the team, several players had run-ins with the law in 2010. The Dolphins repeated with a 7-9 season in 2010. Right now, Brandon Marshall is out on top, having received the pay day he wanted.