It might be time for the Denver Broncos to start looking into other options at the quarterback position. Drew Lock turned in another abysmal performance on Sunday against the Las Vegas Raiders. New offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur has not helped Lock blossom in his second season like most thought he would. It might be time for the Broncos to ask themselves, is Drew Lock the answer?
Is Drew Lock the Denver Broncos Franchise Quarterback?
At the beginning of this season, there was little doubt in most Broncos fans’ minds that they had found their guy at quarterback. Drew Lock had turned in a promising end to 2019 by finishing 4-1 as a starter. When he stepped into the lineup the team seemed to rally around him and play with a new spirit. There was a sense of confidence within Dove Valley that had been missing for quite some time.
Fast forward nine games into 2020 and clearly the honeymoon with the Denver faithful has ended. The Broncos have a losing record again for the fourth time since 2015 and patience is wearing thin. Nothing has gone the Broncos way with a slew of injuries but a struggling Drew Lock isn’t helping. Through nine games, Lock has thrown 10 interceptions to only seven touchdowns made in garbage time mostly. His decision making is atrocious at times and mechanics inside the pocket leave much to be desired.
Regardless of his play this season, Drew Lock needs to play out the rest of the games to have a true evaluation. In his career, he has only played 12 games so in all reality this is still a rookie season for Drew. Unfortunately, there have been numerous first-year players who’ve outperformed Lock this season. Look no further than Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert or Joe Burrow in Cincinnati. Their records are terrible but their play on the field makes up for the current hardships.
Where Does Denver Go If Drew Lock Fails?
Where do the Denver Broncos go if another quarterback experiment goes down the drain? Do they cut their losses and pull a Kliff Kingsbury and draft another rookie? Or do they try and find another stopgap to try and catch lightning in a bottle? There is no real easy answer for the Broncos since neither route has worked in recent history. As it stands now the Broncos hold the 11th pick in the draft well out of blue-chip range. They could make some moves this off-season to move up in order but that’s not likely
Ideally, the place to be in this NFL Draft is in the top five for the big names such as Trevor Lawrence, Justin Fields, and Trey Lance. As mentioned before, Denver has little chance to land any of those guys unless they completely implode. That leaves the Broncos to choose between prospects such as Kyle Trask and Zach Wilson. Neither of those two are worth taking a risk on in the first round at the moment.
Let’s say Drew Lock doesn’t completely implode but Denver finishes outside the top five picks in the draft. John Elway has tried free-agent quarterbacks in the past and none of them really panned out. Then again the Broncos never landed the big fish that was lurking in the pond. Dak Prescott and Cam Newton are the two marquee names leading the 2021 class of quarterbacks. Newton could very well re-sign with the New England Patriots depending on how this season ends. Prescott is going to start a bidding war that Denver has little chance to compete with.
Behind Newton and Prescott are a handful of borderline starters looking for second and third chances. Denver could absolutely bring one of these fringe starters to push Drew Lock but I don’t see that happening. Honestly, it does more harm by stunting Lock’s growth and leaving questions about his future. Unless someone like Matt Stafford becomes available money is better spent on the offensive line and defense.
Once again, it seems that Denver is stuck between a rock and a hard place at quarterback. On one hand, you have a player that seems to be more developmental than first anticipated. Lock appears to need time to come into his own as Josh Allen did in Buffalo. The only question with that is, does the Denver faithful have the patience to go through these growing pains? Or do they scrap the Drew Lock experiment early and start brand new? Only time will tell ultimately in the end but borrowed time is coming due fast for Drew Lock and Denver.