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Williams, who turns 35 this year, was due $1 million next week and $4.2 million next season. Bannan was due $500,000 next week and $3.5 million next season.

McDaniels beefed up his defensive line a year ago by adding free agents Bannan, Williams and Jarvis Green, who was cut during training camp, costing the Broncos $3.255 million.

Altogether, the trio cost the Broncos more than $17 million and produced just 82 tackles and one sack.

The Broncos have made fixing the defense their top offseason priority after the unit ranked last in the league in 2010, contributing to McDaniels’ ouster.

Among the defensive linemen they might consider selecting with the second overall pick in next month’s draft are Auburn’s Nick Fairley and Alabama’s Marcell Dareus.

Late Thursday, the Broncos agreed to terms with defensive end Kevin Vickerson on a multiyear deal. Vickerson joined the team as a free agent after his release by Seattle last season and started 12 games, collecting 52 tackles and two sacks.