3 ideal trade destinations for Denver Broncos QB Drew Lock

Denver Broncos quarterback Drew Lock lost a training camp competition to veteran newcomer Teddy Bridgewater, which could mean he’ll be either requesting a trade soon, or the Broncos will field calls for him.

Let’s take a look at some of the landing spots that’d make the most sense for Lock if he winds up moving from the Mile High City after getting beat out by Bridgewater.

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Pittsburgh Steelers finally line up decent Big Ben contingency with Drew Lock trade

Pittsburgh Steelers finally line up decent Big Ben contingency with Drew Lock trade
Sep 20, 2020; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; Denver Broncos quarterback Drew Lock (3) warms up before laying the Pittsburgh Steelers at Heinz Field. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Mason Rudolph. Dwayne Haskins. Those are the options Pittsburgh is looking at behind Ben Roethlisberger, who fell apart down the stretch of last season and is likely in the midst of his final year in the NFL.

Haskins will be playing for his livelihood in the Pittsburgh Steelers‘ third preseason game, and it’s quite clear by now Rudolph isn’t starting material, So, what is Pittsburgh’s plan at the most important position on the field once Big Ben retires?

Unclear. Enter Lock. What the Steelers do have is a cast of young, promising skill position players similar to what Lock has in Denver. Rookie tailback Najee Harris and tight end Pat Freiermuth give Pittsburgh hope for the post-Roethlisberger era, not to mention second-year wideout Chase Claypool and third-year pro Diontae Johnson.

Lock would be going to one of the best organizations in pro sports. He could be had for minimal draft compensation, too. Steelers GM Kevin Colbert should pick up the phone now and get this done.

Atlanta Falcons develop Drew Lock behind Matt Ryan

Atlanta Falcons develop Drew Lock behind Matt Ryan
May 25, 2021; Flowery Branch, GA, USA; Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan (2) and head coach Arthur Smith talk on the field during Falcons OTA at the Falcons Training Complex. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

The Atlanta Falcons have always made sense as a Lock landing spot. Even leading into the NFL Draft, before Atlanta stuck at No. 4 overall to take Kyle Pitts and there were rumors the team could trade down, putting Lock in a pick swap trade package made a ton of sense.

Speaking of teams who don’t have viable succession plans behind their veteran starter, there’s no question the Falcons fall into that category. New head coach Arthur Smith is a brilliant offensive mind, and should help Matt Ryan to continued success for at least another year or two.

However, there’s always the chance that Ryan’s quality of play falls off. Matty Ice has also missed just three career starts. How long can that hold up as he prepares for his age-36 season, where he’ll likely be in a lot of obvious passing situations as the Falcons engage in a series of shootouts?

The team can’t rule out an upgrade at QB2 even after signing Josh Rosen. Smith’s QB-friendly system revived Ryan Tannehill‘s career. Maybe he can do something like that for Lock down the road. Lock’s mobility outside the pocket and downfield throwing skill set make him an ideal fit.

Plus, having weapons like Pitts and stud receiver Calvin Ridley would only help if and whenever Lock would be pressed into duty.

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Minnesota Vikings pick up Drew Lock as Kirk Cousins insurance

Minnesota Vikings pick up Drew Lock as Kirk Cousins insurance
May 26, 2021; Eagan, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) and quarterback Kellen Mond (11) participate in drills at OTA at TCO Performance Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

With the understanding that’s way too early to give up on Kellen Mond‘s potential as a future starter, the Minnesota Vikings could still do better on their QB depth chart than the likes of current backups Jake Browning and Nate Stanley.

Broncos GM George Paton joined Denver after a long tenure as a Vikings executive. That’s part of the reason Bridgewater, who began his career in Minnesota, landed with the Broncos in the first place. Who’s to say these sides wouldn’t be open to a trade, given all the close ties?

We’ll see how much longer the Vikes want to string along Kirk Cousins and try to reach a championship level with him. It doesn’t seem achievable at this point. Mond presents a decent option somewhere down the road, yet it wouldn’t hurt Minnesota to acquire a readier QB2.

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The Vikings have had a lot of turnover at offensive coordinator of late, but the principles of their system are similar to what Lock has run over the last couple years in Denver. He could probably get up to speed in short order, and give Minnesota a more athletic, dynamic prospect with a livelier arm than Cousins.

Worth noting: Cousins can be traded in 2022 and save the Vikings $35 million in cap space. If they don’t make the playoffs this year, that’s definitely in play.

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