Bronco Blog: Preseason Week 1
After a long and hot summer for NFL training camp in Englewood, Colorado, the Denver Broncos traveled to Chicago to meet the Bears in their 2017 Preseason opener. Prior to the game however, many starters didn't have action on the field including veterans Jamaal Charles, and T.J. Ward of the "No Fly Zone" after suffering a hamstring injury during camp. And at the last minute, head coach Vance Joseph made the call to sit out the Broncos' franchise outside linebacker and Super Bowl 50 MVP, Von Miller. Also, Joseph stated to the media that Paxton Lynch is leading Trevor Siemian in the quarterback battle. On the Bears' side, this would be the NFL debut of the second pick of the 2017 NFL Draft; rookie quarterback from North Carolina, Mitchell Trubisky.
However, the Bears' starter for the game was Mike Glennon and sure enough, he was the equivalent of Jay Cutler when he had his tenure in Chicago. Glennon ended up recording only 2 of his 8 passes for 20 yards, no touchdowns, and tossing a pick six to Broncos CB Chris Harris Jr. as well as losing a botched snap. Mark Sanchez didn't do too well either as he ended going 1/4 for only 4 yards and no touchdowns. Then rookie Mitch Trubisky showed the Bears what he had in him as he went 18/25 for 166 yards and a touchdown pass to former Giant, Victor Cruz.
But enough about Trubisky and the Bears. The real story here focuses on the Broncos Quarterback battle between Trevor Siemian and Paxton Lynch. Siemian got the Broncos starting position for this game but he held the ball too long on drives despite going 6/7, 51 yards with no touchdowns as he only got 3 points from his kicker Brandon McManus. Then it was Paxton Lynch's turn to play but he didn't do any better going 6/9 for 42 yards and no touchdowns.
After a 1 yard touchdown run by the Bears' Benny Cunningham and a field goal by Connor Barth, the Broncos were down 17-10. Little did they know however, that they had just a little more Mile High Magic in the form of an undrafted rookie free agent out of Northern Colorado, Quarterback Kyle Sloter. In the late stages of the fourth quarter, Sloter threw a 47 yard touchdown pass to rookie punt returner Issiah McKenzie as the Broncos tied it at 17. Then the Broncos scored the go-ahead touchdown with just 1:49 left in the game with a 41 yard touchdown run by rookie running back De'Angelo Henderson, giving the Broncos the 24-17 lead.
Then Mitch Trubisky tried to lead the Bears to a comeback to tie the game. After an incomplete pass by Trubisky, he had one more play with just 3 seconds left on the clock. But the Denver defense held off Trubisky, forcing him to throw another incomplete pass as the Denver Broncos won their first preseason game by the score of 24-17.
Kyle Sloter ended up passing 5-6 with 94 yards and 1 touchdown; the only touchdown pass from any of the three Broncos quarterbacks. If you think there are only two Broncos quarterbacks in this QB competition in Denver, then think again. Kyle Sloter took less sacks than Siemian and Lynch combined last season. From what I saw, Sloter was able to scramble out of the pocket, get the ball out of his hands quickly, find his open targets, and actually score touchdowns. He only had just one incompletion. That is saying a lot for a rookie quarterback's first NFL game; especially the fact that he was undrafted.
If you are a Trevor Siemian or Paxton Lynch fan that is reading this, you may want to rethink your prediction on who will be the starting quarterback for the Denver Broncos come Week 1. Kyle Sloter is probably the best of the bunch when it comes to the Denver Broncos' quarterbacks. If Sloter can do the exact same things he did against Chicago except with the 1's, he is going to be able to win games for the Denver Broncos.
If you are on my side Broncos Country, let's cheer on Kyle Sloter in hopes that he will put up identical performances in the next three preseason games and hopefully gain the starting job as the Denver Broncos' starting quarterback. Again, if you are a Siemian or Lynch fan, you need to check yourself. This Kyle Sloter guy is for real and he just might be the Denver Broncos' franchise quarterback for years to come.
1, 2, 3... #TeamSloter!