C.J. Anderson is a restricted free agent who split carries in the Denver Broncos backfield last season, but that isn't stopping teams from looking at his Super Bowl ring and his 4.7 yards per carry and thinking that he might be a nice addition.
In fact, the market for Anderson seems to be exploding.
According to KUSA Channel 9 in Denver, Anderson got so much attention on the first day of free agency that he spent Wednesday night stuck in the airport while negotiations took place between his agent and at least four teams: Miami, Chicago, New England and San Francisco.
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Anderson wound up in Miami after an intense, multiple-team bidding war Wednesday left the Denver Broncos' running back sitting at the San Francisco Airport from 3 p.m. mountain time until 11:30 p.m., when the Dolphins emerged with the sweetest opportunity and arranged for a red-eye flight to Miami. When Anderson, a restricted free agent, arrived at the San Francisco airport Wednesday afternoon, he was scheduled to fly to Chicago for a visit with John Fox and the Bears. Before he boarded his flight, though, the Dolphins called and Anderson was told to not get on the plane headed for Chicago until further notice.
So Anderson is in Miami on Thursday listening to Dolphins head coach Adam Gase, who in 2013 and 2014 was Anderson's offensive coordinator with the Broncos. Anderson, 25, can thank Denver for the bidding war that was touched off when the team tendered him at the lowest level, which means it will get no draft-pick compensation if he leaves.
The Broncos retain the right to match any offer sheet Anderson signs within five days, but a team that wants a restricted free agent badly often tries to front-load its offer so that it makes that player's current club think twice about doing so.
Denver, however, has more money to spend than expected after already losing quarterback Brock Osweiler (Texans), defensive lineman Malik Jackson (Jaguars) and linebacker Danny Travathan (Bears) in free agency. The question now is whether it will -- for the first time this offseason -- pay up to keep a key member of its championship-winning team in place.
Anderson ran for only 720 yards in regular season but racked up 234 yards in three postseason wins.