Super Bowl Champion Broncos Going Nowhere Without Quarterback
Broncos Won Super Bowl Last Season But Going Nowhere Without A Quarterback Half As Good As Was Manning
By Kelso Sturgeon
The third and most serious week of the National Football preseason begins Thursday night and it is my observation there are at least a dozen teams still looking to find their way—none more so than the defending Super Bowl champion Denver Broncos who appear to have no legitimate starting quarterback on the roster. Unless that situation changes, Denver is going nowhere in 2016-17.
Denver coach Gary Kubiak says he will start Trevor Siemian, a second-year player out of Northwestern, against the Los Angeles Rams Saturday while giving equal time to veteran Mark Sanchez and this season’s number one draft choice Paxton Lynch (Memphis). Kubiak says he is undecided which one will be the starters when the Broncos host the Carolina Panthers in a Super Bowl rematch to begin the season.
It is possible the situation in Denver is so shaky the answer to the quarterback problem might just be—none of the above. Kubiak must have doubts about all of them, since he remains undecided.
If Denver is going anywhere but down this season, the team must acquire a blue-chip quarterback to lead the team. How do you say Colin Kaepernick?
Denver was put in this position when Peyton Manning’s back up—and the team’s hope for the future of the franchise—ditched the Broncos and signed with the Houston Texans for $72 million. Who wants to follow Manning anyway because any inability to perform up to the latter’s level puts his replacement in a no-win situation.
And that is where Denver stands right now—in a no-win universe and knowing despite its great defense needs at least a modicum of offense to win games, and that is not there right now with any of the three current roster quarterbacks.
It was believed when the Broncos acquired Philadelphia Eagles back-up Mark Sanchez they had an answer as to who would replace superstar Peyton Manning as the team’s starter. He has looked good in the preseason but also continues his NFL lifetime of self-destructing with interceptions and fumbles at critical points of the game. He would be a good backup for any team. A starter? No.
Siemian also has played well but there is nothing in his performance that suggests he is now ready for prime time. Maybe later?
As for Lynch, all we have heard out of the Denver training camp is how well he is adapting and how he is impressing the veterans. None of that has been exhibited in preseason game performances. Maybe Lynch just practices well but can’t yet stand the speed of the game and hostile defenders who have already made him a marked man. No question in my mind he will start for the Broncos in a season or two but is far from ready to do that right now.
At this point in time, he is a sitting duck for opposing defenders, especially those lightning-fast corners most teams possess.
Handicapping Week #3 Of NFL Preseason
This definitely is the most important week of the preseason since most teams will play their starters about a half to fine-tune all their parts for the regular season. Here some thoughts:
- Teams with more questions (Detroit is an example) than answers will play their starters the longest.
- Teams that are confident all the pieces are in place (Green Bay is an example) will limit starters playing time in hopes they avoid injury.
- 3. Some coaches have well-defined profiles in Game #3. For instance New Orleans coach Sean Payton is 8-2 in this game and KC’s Andy Reid checks in at 11-6. Meantime Cincinnati’s Marvin Lewis 4-9 and Los Angeles’ Jeff Fisher is 5-13.
- Offenses that have not shown much in the first two games of the preseason will wake up in this one.
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Meantime Week #3 of the NFL preseason resumed Thursday night, and I won my 10 Unit play on the Seahawks (-6) over the Cowboys 27-17.