On Jan. 19, 2014, the Denver Broncos defeated the New England Patriots to earn a chance to play in the Super Bowl.
Fourteen days later, the Seattle Seahawks swept the floor with Peyton Manning and the Broncos, sending Denver into the offseason licking its wounds.
When the league calendar turned over and free agency started on March 11, it became clear that both Super Bowl semifinalists were set to reload for another championship run.
The Broncos struck first, signing cornerback Aqib Talib away from the Patriots, and safety T.J. Ward, bolstering their secondary. Also, the Broncos added former Dallas Cowboys defensive end DeMarcus Ware to line up opposite pass rusher Von Miller to create a fearsome defensive front.
New England retaliated by loading its defense with stud defensive backs Darrelle Revis and Brandon Browner, as well as re-signing last year’s leading receiver Julian Edelman.
The teams also matched wide receiver signings when the Broncos added former Pittsburgh Steeler Emmanuel Sanders and New England brought in Brandon LaFell, giving Manning and Tom Brady more toys with which to play.
With all the free agents flocking to the Mile High City and The Cradle of Liberty, the rich just keep on getting richer, leaving Patriots and Broncos fans happy, and leaving the rest of the AFC wondering how it’s going to keep pace.
Reach the columnist at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @Tonis_The_Tiger