Early in the pre-draft process, Paxton Lynch was considered the No. 1 quarterback prospect this year. That changed, though trade movement that made quarterbacks go 1-2 in the draft again elevated Lynch’s stock as the third-best signal-caller, and the Denver Broncos traded up in the first round to take him.
The Broncos have been in quarterback limbo all offseason, with rumors tying them to multiple veterans but only yielding Mark Sanchez in a trade. So the draft became the obvious alternative, and Broncos general manager John Elway has not dismissed the idea that Lynch will make starts for the team as a rookie.
Lynch comes into the NFL with size (6-foot-7, 244 pounds) and physical tools to burn, but he does need to work on the finer points of the next level, like calling plays in the huddle. That being said, Elway asserted that Lynch will be ready “quicker” than most people think.
Barring something unforeseen, Sanchez will enter training camp as Denver’s starting quarterback. He is set up to succeed in much the same way he did early in his career with the New York Jets, with a strong defense to lean on, but Sanchez’s more recent resume does not give him much job security.
It would be unprecedented for a defending Super Bowl champion to have a rookie start Week 1, and unless Sanchez is severely injured between now and then the Broncos won’t be the first to do so. But Lynch is absolutely in line to see the field at some point during his rookie season, for better or worse, and I’d bet on him making at least five starts.