When Chad Kelly arrived in Denver as Mr. Irrelevant 2017, he infamously compared himself to a pair of Hall-of-Fame quarterbacks on local radio, including his boss John Elway. We all know how the Kelly situation played out, with him getting arrested for criminal trespassing in 2018 and cut by the Broncos within a 24-hour window.
The Broncos have a new quarterback — a young gunslinger drafted in the second round earlier this year. There aren't many similarities between Kelly and Drew Lock, with the possible exception of their respective arm strength.
From a measurables and intangibles perspective, the two young quarterbacks couldn't be more different. One of the biggest differences is that Lock lets his play and his teammates do the talking for him when it comes to all-time comparisons.
Lock's teammates feel like they've finally found their quarterback of the future, which second-year wideout DaeSean Hamilton talked about following his big performance vs. the Detroit Lions in Week 16. Hamilton also made a Hall-of-Fame comparison of Lock that should raise your eyebrows.
“It’s big. Drew is going out there and proving himself every week," Hamilton said post-game. "He has the whole locker room behind him, everyone loves him here. I swear, he reminds me of Brett Favre. I grew up a Packer fan and he just reminds me of a gunslinger. But we all love Drew and we’re all behind him. We just can’t wait to see his progression.”
Brett freaking Favre.
The funny thing is, that isn't the first time I've heard Lock compared to Favre. What makes it interesting is that the comparison is being drawn by a teammate and a wide receiver to boot.
Favre had a huge arm and a gunslinger's mentality, so it's easy to see the comparison. But what Favre also brought to the table was a swagger and infectious enthusiasm for the game of football that rubbed off on his teammates in a big way. The same can be said for Lock.
“There’s just something about him," safety Justin Simmons said post-game. "He has, and I hate saying the same word, he has that swag. He’s a natural leader. Guys want to follow him, and he has that contagious spirit. When we had that drive, on the sidelines as a defense, we get the rest. We come back out juiced up and to see those guys grinding, we want to make it a three and out and get those guys the ball back. It’s great.”
Lock is now 3-1 as a starter. His guys are rallying around him and not just the offensive players. His impact is sparking the defensive side of the ball as well.
The Broncos held the Lions to under 200 total yards on Sunday, and as you heard Simmons say, part of that can be attributed to Lock leading the offense on five consecutive scoring drives, three of which were 11-play clock-eaters. That keeps the defense rested and when those drives end in points, it also energizes that side of the ball.
It's way too soon to draw anything close to Hall-of-Fame implications for Lock. But fans should be excited that Broncos players are comparing his energy and characteristics to all-time greats like Brett Favre.