Although Trevor Siemian and Paxton Lynch finished the game with similar stats, they took significantly different routes getting there – a crucial aspect that separated the quarterbacks in the evaluation of the game.
Joseph, who worked as the defensive backs coach for the Bengals during the 2014 and 2015 seasons, was hired as Denver’s head coach in January.
“I think everybody is on top of it, but just like I said, the first preseason game, you don’t really get to game-plan as much as you wish you could”, Lynch said. The Broncos drafted those guys specifically to make the offense more explosive, and they both delivered in their first game. But he also said he wouldn’t feel compelled to rush the decision if he has not seen a clear victor. Unlike Siemian, Lynch got slightly better as the night progressed, saving his best drive for last. That gave the Broncos a 24-17 lead. So whether it’s the first-, second- or third-teamers, the Broncos will have the chance to show in the preseason if they can dig in when they need to. The Broncos’ offense was flagged nine times – one of the penalties was declined – and there were multiple penalties that were off-setting, so the Broncos’ 74 penalty yards do not reflect the actual effect penalties had on the tempo of the offense or the quarterbacks’ ability to find a rhythm.
Five plays after giving up the sack, Watson was flagged for a penalty on the same play the Bears were also flagged.
That, a quarterback competition and what coach Vance Joseph called about “15 decisions” on the roster are all on the list of things to consider at Soldier Field. “Winning is winning. We hung in there, we hung in there, made some plays late, and won the football game”. Unfortunately, it was an eight-play drive that went 31 yards and stalled at Chicago’s 44-yard line – the only time Lynch crossed into the Bears territory.
“We want to put pressure on the defense every snap and every play”, Siemian said. Overall, it was a solid performance, but the penalties kind of killed us offensively and [on] third downs. That’s the game. If we know it, we have to nail it.
Up next on the schedule is a trip to face the San Francisco 49ers for joint practices and preseason game No. 2.
The touchdown pass was a 47-yard bomb to fellow rookie Isaiah McKenzie on third and 18 in the fourth quarter.
“I thought I did some good things, [and] I thought Paxton did some good things”, Siemian said.
“They’re both playing good football”, Joseph said of his quarterbacks.
But watching him on the field, I have to say I did not see anything flashy or impressive.