Like his predecessors before him, Trevor Siemian’s presence as the starting quarterback of the Denver Broncos proved to be polarizing among the fanbase. With supporters on both sides of the fence contentiously arguing the strengths and weaknesses of the young signal-caller, the starting job in Denver continues to be a hot topic going into a pivotal offseason.
With much attention being paid to the play of Siemian, it would be redundant to continue to debate whether he should be the starter of this team going forward. However, that doesn’t mean that Siemian doesn’t have an important role on this football team — as the backup quarterback.
Examining the reasons why he should remain with the Broncos as the team’s second-stringer, I assume that Paxton Lynch will win the starting job coming out of camp.
From the hiring of offensive coordinator Mike McCoy and quarterbacks coach Bill Musgrave, to GM John Elway stating that the franchise will give Lynch every opportunity to win the job, all signs point to Denver's 2016 first-rounder be the guy come the season opener.
With all that being said, here are three key reasons why Trevor Siemian needs to remain a Bronco
Performance vs. Cost = Value
Did Siemian play well above the expectations of a first-year starter? The answer is yes and no. Yes, in the second half of games versus the Bengals and Chiefs, Siemian showed fans flashes of something more substantial than an untested seventh-round pick.
On the other hand, there were stretches of games against Tennessee, New England and San Diego where he looked every bit the developmental project many in the scouting realm projected him to be.
http://www.scout.com/nfl/broncos/story/1681565-5-reasons-you-should-go-p... Injuring his shoulder during the preseason, and in Week 4, and then later spraining his foot, led to Siemian missing two starts and being banged up down the stretch, all of which did little to debunk the durability questions that arose while at Northwestern — where he missed the last part of his senior season with a knee injury.
Improvements on the offensive line may help with this, but Siemian has proven in his young career he has issues staying on the field. Injuries have kept many a player from reaching his full potential and Siemian is trending in that direction.
What Siemian has proved, though, is that he is capable of coming into a difficult situation and doing enough to not lose games for the Broncos. Players like Drew Stanton in Arizona or even Mark Sanchez in Dallas, have proven to be quality backups for the majority of their careers. As long as you don’t need to turn to them for multiple games at a time, you’re in good hands.
Relationship With His Teammates
Siemian's ceiling will continue to be debated ad nauesm for the foreseeable future. However, what we definitely know is that as the season progressed Siemian earned more praise and respect from his teammates. Playing with nagging ailments while showing a maturity and poise beyond the norm of a first-year starter incurred praise from his peers.
It might not seem like much, but earning the respect of an NFL locker room is no easy thing to come by. Talk to any of his fellow teammates — from his wideouts in Emmanuel Sanders and Demaryius Thomas — to defensive counterparts like Von Miller and Chris Harris, Jr. — Siemian earned a modicum of trust from his fellow Broncos and that greatly benefits him should he be the backup quarterback going into next season.
He won’t be an untested player, like Brett Hundley in Green Bay or a Trevone Boykin in Seattle, but Siemian will be a guy that can have a strong presence in the huddle and instill confidence in his teammates because they have the knowledge that he can go into a game in a pressure situation without the moment being too big for him. Given that Lynch is bound to have his own growing pains as a first-year starter, it’s an insurance policy to have a someone like Siemian waiting on the bench should he be pressed into action.
Good Backups Are A Commodity
When Denver was in the market for a quarterback after the retirement of Peyton Manning and before the drafting of Lynch, there were several voices throwing out the names of A.J. McCarron or Mike Glennon, as suitable replacements. It seemed logical that some team would forgo a promising, younger player for a draft pick to fortify another spot on the field.
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The only problem with either of those two is that neither of their respective clubs were in any hurry to seek any kind of trade for them, with each team stating that they were happy with their current quarterback situation. Why would they, when having a dependable guy on the bench is almost as important as having a viable starter itself?
Matt Cassel, for all of his faults and shortcomings, doesn’t stay on the unemployment line for long. If you have the ability to be dependable in your role as the backup and can learn an offense relatively quickly, you are assured of having a place on a NFL roster.
This is where Siemian’s biggest strength lies. He isn't consistent enough to be a trusted, full-time starter but he doesn’t need to be if he’s the backup. He’s also proven that he can keep the ship afloat with a limited knowledge of the playbook like he did with Gary Kubiak’s offense this year. Going from starter to backup is a hard pill to swallow for any player but in the case of Siemian, it’s the best way he can contribute to the Broncos.
It’ll be disappointing for some fans to have to come to grips that Siemian probably won’t follow in the steps of Tom Brady and go from obscurity to stardom. In spite of that, Siemian can still be a vital piece for a young team like Denver that will still be inexperienced at the NFL’s toughest position.
Injuries and unproductivity happen and it never hurts to have a player on hand to pull a game out of the fire. Although there have been some murmurs to the contrary, Trevor Siemian should be a valued member of the Denver Broncos next season. Just not in the way some would have hoped it would be.
Adam Uribes is an Analyst for Mile High Huddle. You can find him on Twitter @auribes37.
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