Paxton Lynch named Denver Broncos backup quarterback

“It’s a permanent decision,” Joseph said. “As far as Trevor being our guy, he’s our guy.”
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Trevor Siemian, right, and Paxton Lynch, center, are competing for the Broncos starting QB gig. (Isaiah J. Downing/USA Today Sports)

The Denver Broncos quarterback competition is over. For the second straight season, former seventh-round pick Trevor Siemian won the job, Broncos head coach Vance Joseph said Monday.

The decision to name Siemian the starting QB over Paxton Lynch came less than 48 hours after Denver's second preseason game.

Lynch was given the opportunity to start against the 49ers on Saturday, but he struggled mightily, throwing for just 39 yards on 13 attempts in five series. Siemian, who led a touchdown drive on his very first series, at least offered competency. He completed 8 of 11 passes for 93 yards.

"He was the clear-cut winner," Joseph said.

"The decision making, ball placement was more consistent with Trevor. That’s why he won the job."

Siemian was the 250th overall pick in the 2015 draft, while Lynch was the 26th overall pick in 2016. Joseph shot down the idea that it was disappointing a former first-round pick failed to beat out a former seventh-round pick for the second season in a row.

"Some guys need more time," said Joseph of Lynch. "He’s a young player. In a year or two, he might be able to take over the reins. But right now he’s not."

Siemian wound up starting 14 games in 2016. He threw for 3,401 yards, 18 TD and 10 interceptions as Denver went 9-7 and missed the playoffs for the first time since 2010. Siemian showed elusiveness and play-making ability in his first season as the starter but lacked arm strength and accuracy, NFL analyst Cian Fahey said.

"He doesn’t have the extreme positives to make up for the consistent negatives," said Fahey, who wrote an e-book about quarterback play after watching 33,000 snaps this offseason, earlier this month.

Even so, Siemian did enough this summer to hold off Lynch from overtaking him this year.

The Broncos were reportedly interested in bringing in veteran QB Tony Romo, but Romo decided to retire after 13 seasons with the Cowboys to become a TV analyst with CBS. That left Denver with Siemian and Lynch as its options. Siemian emerged the winner once again.

"It's a permanent decision," Joseph said. "As far as Trevor being our guy, he's our guy."

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