Amid all the Aaron Rodgers rumors consuming Broncos Country, somewhat lost in the shuffle has been Drew Lock's fight to hold onto his starting job. Teddy Bridgewater’s arrival has assured Denver Broncos fans of a training camp battle to entertain them, regardless of what happens with Rodgers.
Gregg Rosenthal of Around the NFL recently took aim at projecting the Broncos' 2021 starters on the offensive side of the ball. And it may come as a shock that Rosenthal's early prediction is that Bridgewater will be anointed the Week 1 starter under center by head coach Vic Fangio.
NFL Network's Michael Silver spent the entire draft weekend embedded with the Broncos' front office, then wrote that Teddy Bridgewater is the team's presumptive starter. I'll presume that's a highly informed presumption. Bridgewater over Drew Lock makes sense. Vic Fangio is a defensive coach with a prospective top-five defense who wants his quarterback to limit turnovers. Bridgewater may not be exciting, but he makes fewer mistakes than Lock and has performed at a far higher level as a pro. In some ways, Teddy has lived a charmed life over the last three years. He played with excellent coaching and talent in New Orleans and Carolina, but this Broncos group of weapons could be the best he's played with yet.
Rosenthal’s hot take was given some credence via Fangio's comments pn Bridgewater last week.
“What I do firmly believe is that you can’t really show leadership until you’ve earned your stripes,” Fangio said. “Teddy has played a lot of football in the NFL. He started for Minnesota for a couple of years. He had those five games with the Saints, and then he played last year with the Panthers. There’s a lot of respect for him, both from the players and everybody in this organization.”
Fangio believes Bridgewater can take control of the offense and lead from the front in any scenario. Lock’s limited body of work consists of only 18 starts spread over a pair of injury-interrupted seasons, so it’s only natural to frame him as a man under pressure.
Thus far, Lock has knuckled down to the task at hand, and has received the vocal backing of several key players from within his own locker room. All too often, the national narrative becomes lazy, especially when a higher profile QB arrives to seemingly claim the starting job — so with even more doubters piling on it’s up to Loc to flip that particular script.
Follow Keith on Twitter @KeithC_NFL.
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