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Denver Broncos cut Mark Sanchez, keep entire eight-player draft class

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Releasing Sanchez smart financial move for Broncos (0:44)

Jeff Legwold details how the Broncos will benefit financially by releasing Mark Sanchez. (0:44)

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- The Denver Broncos cut 22 players Friday and Saturday, trimming their roster to the NFL-mandated 53 players. Here's a closer look at the final cuts:

Most significant move: The Broncos traded for Mark Sanchez less than 12 hours after Brock Osweiler was introduced as the Houston Texans' new quarterback, and Sanchez arrived in Denver with the hope of being the starting quarterback -- he called it "an opportunity of a lifetime." Almost six months later, Sanchez was the odd man out, with a $4.5 million salary, three turnovers in 46 preseason snaps and no place on the depth chart. Trevor Siemian won the starting job, with rookie Paxton Lynch poised to be the No. 2. Sanchez was a low-risk investment, and in the end the Broncos decided it was more prudent to keep the draft pick they would have shipped to the Philadelphia Eagles if they had kept Sanchez on the roster. The Broncos also signed Austin Davis to a veteran backup quarterback role Saturday.

Most significant non-move: Broncos executive vice president of football operations/general manager John Elway has always said the team needs "to stack those draft classes" to be successful and that "our job is not to draft Pro Bowl players but to find the right guys and develop them." To that end, all of the Broncos' eight-player draft class made the cut to 53, as did undrafted rookie defensive lineman Kyle Peko. The Broncos will now feature two rookies -- Justin Simmons and Will Parks -- as the backups at free and strong safety. Simmons has shown enough that he is expected to play in some of the Broncos' specialty packages on defense, and both Simmons and Parks will be regulars on special teams.

Preseason matters: Running back Kapri Bibbs, who spent much of the past two seasons on the Broncos' practice squad, faced an uphill climb to make the roster when training camp opened. But he had caught the Broncos' eye during the offseason program and they took a long look at him in the preseason. Bibbs led the Broncos in rushing attempts (33), rushing yards (138) and had the longest run for the team at 25 yards. The Broncos thought enough of Bibbs to keep him over Ronnie Hillman, who was the team's leading rusher in 2015, and Juwan Thompson, who had been with the Broncos the previous two seasons at running back and fullback.

Developing situation: Bibbs, linebacker Zaire Anderson and wide receiver Jordan Taylor were all on the Broncos' practice squad last season and all turned that time into roster spots this time around. Anderson, especially, kept making double-take-worthy hits in practice and in preseason games -- he had two forced fumbles against the San Francisco 49ers. Taylor closed the preseason with a strong statement, finishing with 104 yards receiving and two touchdowns against the Arizona Cardinals on Thursday night. Taylor is one of the players who consistently worked with Peyton Manning as he tried to return from his football injury. Manning has often predicted that Taylor would open eyes this season.

Broncos moves: C Dillon Day, LB Vontarrius Dora, WR Mose Frazier, T Lars Hanson, RB Ronnie Hillman, S Shiloh Keo (reserve/suspended), DE Lars Koht, LB Kyle Kragen, TE Henry Krieger-Coble, CB B.J. Lowery, DE Henry Melton, S Ryan Murphy, T Justin Murray, G Robert Myers Jr., G Aaron Neary, CB Taurean Nixon, LB Dwayne Norman, WR Kalif Raymond, QB Mark Sanchez, LB Sadat Sulleyman, RB Juwan Thompson, CB John Tidwell, DE Eddie Yarbrough.