John Elway on Paxton Lynch: ‘We are not kicking him to the curb’

Denver Broncos quarterback Paxton Lynch

The Denver Broncos aren’t ready to give up on 2016 first-round pick Paxton Lynch just yet, even though many people have already written him off as a bust. John Elway made this point perfectly clear on Monday as the team kicked off its second phase of offseason workouts.

We are not kicking him to the curb,’’ Elway said, per Mike Klis of 9News in Denver. “He can still develop. When we drafted him two years ago, as I said, we knew it was going to take some time.”

At this time there’s no doubt that Case Keenum, whom the team signed to a two-year deal in free agency, is the starting quarterback. Denver abstained from taking a passer in the draft, so right now Lynch will be in a competition with last year’s Mr. Irrelevant, Chad Kelly, for the primary backup role.

“Paxton is going to compete with Chad for that backup spot. We are not going to bring another one in for OTAs. We will take a peek at that. It will be those two and Case. We are going to OTAs with those guys and go from there.”

Given the fact that Denver did trade up for Lynch two years ago, it’s not surprising that the Broncos don’t want to give up on him yet. In terms of raw physical talent, he’s got the goods. However, as we saw in his limited opportunities the past couple of years, Lynch tends to get easily rattled in games and isn’t great at throwing catchable passes under duress.

It’s going to be interesting to see what Denver’s strategy is long term at the quarterback position. Keenum is a great bridge. But to where?