The Denver Broncos brought in a slew of new coaches, today they finally got to see their players at work. New DB Coach, Johnnie Lynn will see how fly our No Fly Zone is.
New Ol Coach Jeff Davidson is being handed a lump of coal to turn into a diamond, or at least a sapphire. Don Stephenson at LT (mommy), Dan Leary at LG, and I’m assuming James Ferentz at Center since Matt Paradis is out until at least July. He’ll see if Michael Schofield should keep at RG and there’s Menelik Watson at RT. Not to mention, what about Connor McGovern?
DL Coach Bill Kollar will see if the added beef of Domata Peko and Kasim Edebali can plug up the center. Linebacking coaches Reggie Herring and Pug can determine if Shane Ray can fill DeMarcus Ware’s shoes and where to draft Brandon Marshall and Todd Davis some help.
Mike McCoy will see if Devontae Booker learned to have better vision, if CJ Anderson is healthy and how high does Elway need to draft a RB. Can 6’5″ Marlon Brown be a match-up weapon in this system and with a tall quarterback?
He and new TE coach Geep Chryst will also see if Jeff Heuerman and AJ Derby can live up to the hype. Where a TE is drafted will be up to them.
Finally, and this is a big one, where is Paxton Lynch? And do they really want a quarterback competition.
On the surface, a quarterback competition seems like a good idea. What’s not to like about competing? It pushes one to be better; however, franchise quarterbacks push themselves. Their competition is in the mirror.
There is a flip side to pitting two quarterback against each other. It means there are two sides. Split factions. There is a ‘us’ and ‘them’ mentality. Unlike ‘battling’ in other positions, quarterback needs a clear leader.
Not just a leader for the position, I mean a clear leader for the team. This is your franchise. Own it, lead it. Tell your offense what to do. Be the face and voice of the Denver Broncos.
More than that, as Peyton Manning often spoke about, you need reps with the ones. The timing and chemistry can only come about through time. Lots of it.
We have two quarterbacks who are so vastly different, it can’t be easy for their teammates to keep adjusting. Or making a playbook. Trevor Siemian throws a tight spiral from a lower position. Paxton Lynch throws a looser spiral with far more velocity and a much higher release point.
One is aggressive, one is not. One is mobile, one is not. This effects everyone. From the center having to hike the ball higher for Lynch, to receivers having more time with him because he can extend plays and get the ball faster down the field.
Now there is a new scheme and playbook. Everyone having to go back to square one. Not just with the aforementioned, but realistically, there could be four or even five ‘new’ starters on the offensive line today.
It doesn’t matter who your personal preference is to be the starting quarterback, it’s bad for him to compete because this group needs one quarterback and he needs every second working with at least Leary and Watson. They are the two that should stay where they’ll be at.
In July, when the whole team meets up for training camp, we should have a new running back and tight end, too.
Next week, we could (on my knees) have a new LT from another team. All these changes, which I’m going to assume are for the better, aren’t good for cohesion if the quarterbacks split reps.
Joesph has said that Elway will be at every practice and watching practice clips. He will also be part of a group that decides the starter. By Thursday, McCoy, Musgrave and Elway will have a good idea where Lynch is at. That won’t happen if reps with the ones are split 50-50.
Denver needs an NFL experienced LT ready to go. That will require a trade. A combo of a player(s) and a pick(s). If by Thursday they determine Lynch in this new system is a go, it will change their draft strategy.
Why? Because then they can move Siemian. However, he won’t be enough, they’ll have to use a pick as well. This is why they really can’t afford to to have an equal split with the ones. Andy Janovich could be in there, too because McCoy doesn’t use a fullback.
Last season, Lynch had about ten days of practice, in total, scattered over months, with the ones. They have no idea what they really have. They do with Siemian. He’s a known quantity.
They also know, he’s not good enough to be the starter, or they’d have called him that. When asked if Siemian had a leg up, Joseph said, no. He had 13 games, an entire season of practice and that didn’t warrant a, yes?
So, why would they want to see more of him before the draft, when it’s Lynch they need to evaluate?
Why would they want to move a cheap back-up? Because as I mentioned above, this team needs a leader, now. The locker room, especially the offensive side, especially needs it.
No more distractions, no media questions, just focus on knowing who is in the huddle calling the shots. The incoming rookies, need the same. Not dueling QBs.
The idea of a competition isn’t misguided, but the fall-out from it, is. Franchise quarterbacks don’t compete against another except themselves.
Furthermore, the passing camp Emmanuel Sanders wants to do, cannot work with two quarterbacks. It defeats the whole purpose of why Manning sstarted it (and others followed). He did it so HE had extra time to get the timing down with his guys with hands. He never invited his back-up.
Since a camp will occur, and it’s after the draft, it would now be wise for the rookie RB and TE to go, too. Maybe the entire OL because this unit is going to need every second it can get and rotating quarterbacks isn’t how to do it.
As a caveat, if the coaches determine that Lynch didn’t make any strides and they need to keep Siemian, or they can’t get a trade partner, then they truly have a mess on their hands. This worst case scenario changes everything, one I’m not going to contemplate on a glorious day.
I’m excited. Today starts the week of some questions getting answered, let’s hope they’re good ones.