Last season, Drew Lock was one of the worst quarterbacks in the NFL. That statement is as undeniable as it gets. When he was on the field he was dismal but he didn’t even start the full season as he dealt with injuries. Going beyond the eye test, the stats confirmed that Lock was the worst starting QB in the NFL. This incredibly poor performance left the young QB fighting for his job against new acquisition Teddy Bridgewater. But this shouldn’t be the end of Lock. Here’s why Drew Lock should be the starter for the 2021-2022 season.
Everyone in the Broncos organization should want Drew Lock to win the job, except Bridgewater and one other person. That person, head coach Vic Fangio, will be the one with the final say on who is the Broncos’ starting QB. Fangio, like Lock, is also fighting for his job. Lock is partially to blame for Fangio being on the hot seat. After all, poor quarterback performance can make any coach look bad.
The Case for Drew
When looking at all the franchises with bright futures in the league most of them have one thing in common. A young quarterback who can sometimes be a little sporadic. That’s exactly what Lock is. His spontaneity got him in a world of trouble last season with ridiculous interception numbers, but that doesn’t mean he can’t come back from it.
A great example to compare Lock to would be Josh Allen of the Buffalo Bills. Allen was erratic with a rocket arm and really struggled to get it going at first, but all of the sudden that changed. After improving his accuracy and getting a new number one receiver Allen became an MVP candidate in just his third season. Going into Lock’s third season the setup looks very similar. Wide receiver Courtland Sutton will be returning to provide a major boost to the offense. The pieces are starting to be put in place and if Lock can capitalize we could be in for something big. It’s not too late!
The Case Against Teddy
From a fan’s perspective, there’s no reason why you should want Bridgewater to start. Sure he represents a safer option but in the AFC West, you can’t afford to play it safe. When playing in a division with Patrick Mahomes and Justin Herbert you have to be willing to take gambles. If other teams are starting young quarterbacks with high ceilings starting a quarterback who’s 28 with a known ceiling probably won’t be the best look. The idea that Bridgewater represents safety is very prevalent in Mile High sports talk but in reality that’s not the case. Bridgewater supporters often point to his lower number of interceptions since being in the league. What they fail to take into account is that Bridgewater has been so injury-prone that he’s only really played three nearly full seasons.
Bridgewater has a turnover rate that rivals Lock yet he’s considered the safer option. He’s also only had one season that would be considered an above-par year. That season came in 2019 when he served as the backup to Drew Brees. Bridgewater went 5-0 in that short stretch but that record can be a little deceiving when talking about his personal performance. He was in his second year in an already established offense with plenty of weapons. The Broncos do have a lot of weapons but offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur’s offense is anything but established in Denver. Bridgewater would have to defy the odds to become something special in Denver, but based on his track record it’s hard to see that happening.
By starting Drew Lock the Broncos might not give themselves the best chance to win right now. But this isn’t a team in win now mode. Even though the roster is starting to shape up there’s still a long way for them to go. So what are they really risking by starting Drew Lock? Best case scenario he becomes franchise quarterback material, worst case scenario the Broncos end up with a high draft pick in the perfect position to draft a new quarterback. The reward outweighs the risk by a lot.