The Denver Broncos didn’t wait until this year’s draft to add some much-needed competition to their quarterback depth chart. Instead, they traded a 2021 sixth-round draft pick to the Carolina Panthers for veteran QB Teddy Bridgewater.
Following that trade, will Denver look to draft a quarterback in the first round or will they be content with a pre-season battle between Drew Lock and Teddy Bridgewater for the starting spot?
The Broncos haven’t had a winning season since 2016, so it’s key that they improve at the quarterback position.
Let’s take a look at who will be the Broncos' starting quarterback in 2021.
Drew Lock will likely be the starting QB for the Broncos in 2021
The Broncos 2020 starting QB was drafted in the second round of the 2019 NFL Draft. Lock has struggled to stay healthy during his NFL career, playing in only 18 games over two seasons.
Now that former GM John Elway is no longer running the show in Denver, Lock will need to earn the starting role, rather than being handed it.
NFL career stats
Games played - 18
Passing yards - 3,953
Touchdowns - 23
Interceptions - 18
Passer rating - 79.1
Rushing yards - 232
Rushing TDs - 3
Can Teddy Bridgewater win the Denver Broncos' starting QB role?
Veteran NFL quarterback Teddy Bridgewater adds some much-needed experience to the Broncos roster. The 2014 first-round pick has had an up-and-down NFL career.
He made the to the Pro Bowl in 2015, only to tear his ACL in the 2016 pre-season, which led to an absence of more than 12 months.
After signing with the Jets, he was swiftly traded to the Saints, where he performed admirably as Drew Brees' backup. Bridgewater then signed a three-year deal with the Panthers in 2020.
It wasn’t easy starting for the rebuilding Panthers, yet Bridgewater put up respectable numbers, throwing for 3,733 yards and 15 TDs while rushing for another 5 touchdowns.
The experienced QB will be looking to lead the Broncos back to the playoffs and will be many NFL experts' favorite to win the starting job.
NFL career stats
Games played - 59
Passing yards - 11,385
Touchdowns - 53
Interceptions - 36
Passer rating - 89.5
Rushing yards - 713
Rushing TDs - 9
Will the Denver Broncos draft a QB?
ESPN’s Adam Schefter has reported that the Broncos' trade for Bridgewater does not mean they won’t be drafting a QB in the first round.
The Broncos have the ninth pick in the first round of this year’s draft. To select one of the top five QBs in this draft, the Broncos would likely have to move up from ninth. There is the possibility that highly rated Justin Fields or Trey Lance could fall to them but it’s unlikely.
If the Broncos do select a quarterback in the first round, there is a chance that he could beat out both Lock and Bridgewater for the starter’s job. It’s more likely that a rookie would sit behind one of the more experienced quarterbacks and be groomed as the 2022 starter.
Whatever happens in the draft tomorrow night, the Denver Broncos quarterback situation for the 2021 season remains unclear.
Also check out: What channel is the NFL Draft on today?