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Teddy Bridgewater expected to become Denver Broncos starting QB in Week 1

After striking out on an Aaron Rodgers trade, the Denver Broncos are poised to enter the 2021 NFL season with Teddy Bridgewater and Drew Lock at quarterback. While both signal-callers will compete for the starting job, there might already be a favorite.

The Broncos begin training camp on July 28, the first day of the highly-anticipated quarterback competition. Denver acquired Bridgewater this spring to challenge Lock, who struggled in his second season. While Lock would seemingly be the favorite as the 2019 second-round pick, the battle might play out differently.

The Boston Globe‘s Ben Volin provided some insight on the upcoming quarterback battle, explaining why Bridgewater will likely win the job.

“Lock is the incumbent, but I say follow the money — the Broncos are paying Bridgewater $4.44 million, and Lock only $1.45 million. I’m picking the guy with the higher salary.”

NFL insider Ben Volin on Denver Broncos quarterback competition

A decision won’t be made until after the preseason wraps up. Under the NFL’s new schedule format, there are three preseason games and 20 regular-season contests. With Denver beginning its season on Sept. 12 in a Week 1 matchup against the New York Giants, it will be crucial to make the right call.

Will Aaron Rodgers end his career in Green Bay?

Is Teddy Bridgewater the best fit for the Broncos?

Denver acquired Bridgewater from the Carolina Panthers with a very specific vision. It needed stability at the position to provide balance for Lock’s volatility. While there is plenty of upside with the third-year quarterback, his penchant for mistakes proves costly.

On paper, the Broncos have a playoff-caliber roster. They enter training camp near the top of our NFL defense rankings and there is some buzz regarding this team’s upside. Reaching the AFC Championship Game is unlikely, barring a trade for Rodgers, but the playoffs are possible.

  • Teddy Bridgewater stats (2020): 3,733 passing yards, 92.1 passer rating, 69.1% completion rate, 15/11 TD/INT ratio

Bridgewater won’t make many plays and he proved in Carolina that his limitations put a ceiling on an offense. But the veteran quarterback makes smart decisions, gets the football out to his offensive weapons on time and doesn’t make mistakes.

If the Broncos want to win close games, using a suffocating defense and run-heavy approach offensively, Bridgewater is the team’s best option. But time will tell whether performance, salary or the organization’s original confidence in Lock determines who is named the Week 1 starter.