NFL fans are no strangers to the frequent policy advertisements of companies like State Farm, but the Denver Broncos decided to bring in real-life insurance at the quarterback position.
It’s an interesting hedge for an organization looking to remain competitive in a suddenly frisky AFC West division.
It’s understandable why the Broncos felt the need to shore up their quarterback room ahead of the 2021 season, but throwing in the towel on Lock’s potential as the answer in Denver would be premature.
Despite heading into his third NFL season, Lock has only played a little bit more than the equivalent of a full year.
In his 18 games as a starter with the Broncos, he’s an unspectacular 8-10.
While 8-10 is not 14-4, it’s also certainly not 3-15, and deserves to be viewed as a respectable start to his NFL career.
It’s understood that franchises aren’t willing to wait three to five years to see if they’ve got the answer under center, but pulling the plug on him this quickly would seem to be an overreaction at this point.
Thank you Broncos Country for the warm welcome in 2019…I now understand the passion as well as the responsibility!! Happy New Year!! 🐴 pic.twitter.com/skQ68ktCFu
— Drew Lock (@DrewLock23) January 1, 2020
Offensive Talent Around Him
The Broncos have done a commendable job trying to surround Lock with the talent he needs to be successful.
Denver has invested multiple selections in the last three drafts to bring in playmakers.
Tight end Noah Fant was a first-round pick in the 2019 draft.
Running back Javonte Williams was scooped up at the very beginning of the second round in the 2021 draft.
Sooner or later, it stands to reason that this collection of young players will establish a foundation together.
The Broncos should allow Lock to spend the entire season under center in order to see if he can establish that rapport with all of the aforementioned weapons.
Bridgewater Isn’t The Long-Term Answer
As a franchise, Denver was wise to bring one of the better backup quarterbacks in the NFL with Bridgewater.
He made a name for himself coming on in relief of Drew Brees for the New Orleans Saints in 2019.
While Brees missed five games with a thumb injury, Bridgewater filled in, and the team was victorious in all five contests.
— Teddy Bridgewater (@teddyb_h2o) June 15, 2021
He threw for nine touchdowns and just two interceptions in that span, and did a solid job keeping the train moving.
His successful cameo appearance with the Saints was parlayed into a starting job with the Panthers last year.
Bridgewater did set a high water mark in 2020 for completion percentage in his career, but Carolina was just 4-11 in games he started.
Fairly or unfairly, his lack of success with the Panthers last year likely put the notion of him as a long-term solution to bed.
To be clear, Bridgewater can certainly come in for Denver this year to provide stability in relief, but the Broncos really need to be convinced Lock is not the answer in order to do that, since it seems all but certain Bridgewater isn’t either.