A typical narrative across the league is Trevor Siemian is the present and Paxton Lynch is the future. But is it as simple as Siemian as the stopgap quarterback?
Trevor Siemian came out of nowhere in the spring of 2016 after Mark Sanchez was signed, and the rest of the league waited for Denver to bring in the “starter.”
When Peyton Manning retired and Brock Osweiler chose Houston over Denver, league-wide shots were being taken at John Elway and the quarterback misfire.
Denver took Lynch in the end of the first round of the 2016 draft, signaling a 2016 where a someone needed to simply manage the team while Lynch was prepped to take over.
Siemian beat out everyone, Sanchez didn’t even get a chance with the Broncos, and Lynch sat and watched most of 2016.
Siemian received very little praise and is often a punchline to the same old jokes about being a game manager and unwilling to take chances.
New coach Vance Joseph is having an open competition seemingly everywhere, insisting that the best guys will play.
In 2016 Siemian played in 14 games and tossed 18 touchdowns, 10 interceptions and 3,400 yards. Problem being, New England exposed Siemian for what he is: a game manager of sorts.
Trevor Siemian doesn’t go deep well, and prefers to check down rather than force the issue into coverage.
He averaged 7.0 yards per pass. But, Paxton Lynch, averaged just 6.0 yards per pass.
Paxton Lynch played in three games and three two touchdowns, one interception and 497 yards. Lynch prefers more of a gunslinger mentality.
Lynch looks for the big play and risks it all, and often overlooked the open short completion.
For Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders, the narrative remains Lynch prefers Thomas and Siemian likes Sanders. It’s not exactly true. The duo has been as steady as they come across the league.
On Oct. 2, Lynch took over for Siemian and went 14/24 for 170 yards and one touchdown. Lynch’s one touchdown was to Sanders, not Thomas.
Thomas finished with 6/94/1 TD.
Sanders finished with 8/88/1 TD
Thomas’ touchdown came from Siemian, which of course didn’t fit the narratve.
Then on Oct. 9, Lynch started the game against the Falcons and went 23/35, with one touchdown and one interception.
Demaryius Thomas: 5/49/1 TD.
Emmanuel Sanders; 7/80/0
Finally, Lynch’s final game on Dec. 4 against the Jacksonville Jaguars Paxton Lynch had a line of 12/24, 104 yards and no touchdowns.
Demaryius Thomas: 6/61/0
Emmanuel Sanders: 3/28/0
Thomas had 10 targets, while Sanders was targeted nine times. Not quite the split and favoritism we are led to believe.
When the Broncos open for camp in late July, eyes will certainly be on the quarterback situation, but it’s the offense as a whole that must pick it up and help whomever is behind center.
And Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders will both be popular, regardless of the quarterback.