If he was a quarterback of a more flappable demeanor, Trevor Siemian would have had every right to feel perturbed.
Irked, even. Downright ticked off.
Siemian had already beat out an established veteran starter in Mark Sanchez and a touted, first-round rookie in Paxton Lynch for the Broncos’ starting job last year.
Siemian performed above expectations with 3,401 passing yards and 18 touchdowns against 10 interceptions. All while playing most of the season with a separated left shoulder.
But no sooner did the 2016 season end that the Broncos announced Siemian was in an open, 50-50 competition with Lynch. And the competition lasted for more than seven months.
Broncos head coach Vance Joseph called it Monday by announcing Siemian as the team’s starting quarterback.
“I think you have to compete for your job every day, every week and that’s one of the things when I was here and I watched Peyton (Manning),’’ Siemian said. “That guy wasn’t content. He was a Hall of Famer or whatever it was, but every day every week you’ve to earn your job and quarterback is no different.’’
Maybe in some ways, it’s easier being a seventh-round pick than a first rounder. A seventh rounder has never been called a bust. Siemian always gets to play the underdog. It can easier to play when there’s nothing to lose.
For Paxton Lynch, those first-round expectations can be heavy. He was supposed to win this job.
“Yes, I mean, I have expectations for myself, too,’’ Lynch said. “One of those expectations was to come out here and be the starter and do everything I can to be the starter. I can hang my hat on that -- that I came in here every day and put in extra work to give myself the opportunity. But at the end of the day the coaches made a decision and I respect the decision and I’m going to stand by them.’’
Maybe, eventually, Lynch will develop into a great quarterback. But those players in the Broncos locker room can’t wait. It’s about now in the NFL. Siemian is the clear choice for 2017.
“I’m very sad about it, but I’m going to keep working to be the best player I can be and whenever my number is called I’m going to be ready to play,’’ Lynch said.