Elway: QB race doesn't begin until preseason games

CANTON, OHIO - Don’t count out Paxton Lynch, yet.

In fact, the man in charge of the Denver Broncos’ football operations indicated the quarterback competition between Lynch and Trevor Siemian has yet to begin.

“They are going to keep competing for the job,’’ John Elway, the Broncos’ general manager, said Saturday night following the Hall of Fame speech of former teammate Terrell Davis. “We’ve been in camp a week and two days. We’ll get into preseason. We have not played a game. So as soon as we play a couple games we’ll evaluate then and a decision will be made.’’

Elway and Broncos head coach Vance Joseph remain patient, even if so many followers are in a rush to end the quarterback uncertainty. Check that. Bronco observers aren’t in a hurry so much as they’re tired of a quarterback competition that has gone on since Joseph pronounced Siemian and Lynch even from the day he was hired in mid-January.

Siemian has been the better of the two quarterbacks in camp, even if he is still a ways from mastering the new offense installed by coordinator Mike McCoy. Siemian is leading in part because he is struggling less than Lynch.

“I was out at practice and saw them and they had their ups and downs,'' Terrell Davis said after delivering his Hall of Fame speech. "I guess for me it's Siemian because he's been there. I like the fact that he has a year under his belt. I'm not saying it's long term but right now I think Trevor could be that guy for us.''

Former NFL receiver and current NBC analyst Cris Collinsworth said from the outside looking in. the Broncos’ quarterback competition is no different than others.

“It always comes down to the same battle: Physical skills and traits and then you’ve got a year’s experience,’’ Collinsworth said, referring to Lynch in the former and Siemian the latter. “Which one? Are you willing to take a step back with Paxton, because he’s going to have to go through what Trevor went through a season ago. But then you’re putting off this great defense as he learns the process. It would be unfair to expect him to be (Dallas quarterback) Dak Prescott right off the bat.

“Or you go with Trevor who I thought was a pretty tough son of a gun. He took some pretty big hits last year and he advanced and had some really big moments.

“The hard part when you’re the general manager and you draft a guy (in the first round), you want to see him. There are a lot of guys where you don’t really see it until they play. (Lynch) played a little bit but until you give him an extended run … I mean, Troy Aikman went 1-15. Elway didn’t exactly come out of the chute so he understands you need this ramp-up period. But it’s really hard for organizations to take a kid in the first round and not eventually play him. So they’re going to feel that pressure, especially with the kind of defense they have.’’

After getting Sunday off, Bronco players will resume practice Monday and Tuesday at UCHealth Training Center, then travel to Chicago for their preseason opener Thursday against the Bears.

That’s when the meaningful segment of the competition begins. The Broncos will then travel to San Francisco for practices Aug. 16 and 17, and a preseason game Aug. 19 against the 49ers.

© 2017 KUSA-TV


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