What started as a preseason experiment is now an official lineup change: Trevor Siemian will be the starting quarterback for the Super Bowl champion Denver Broncos when they kick off the regular season on September 8 against Carolina.
"I think he's earned the right to be our guy," said Denver head coach Garry Kubiak. "I go back and look at the body of work throughout the course of the offseason, watch training camp, throughout the preseason, how far he's come. I watch how much he's improved in my opinion, the grasp that he has with what we're doing, to me he's earned the right to go out there and be our starter."
Siemian, a 2015 seventh-round pick out of Northwestern, has thrown 83 passes in the NFL, all in the preseason. He has completed 60 percent of those throws and averaged 6.8 yards per pass, with three touchdowns, three interceptions, and four sacks. Here is everything we wrote about him in FOA 2015:
Siemian threw seven touchdowns and 11 interceptions in his senior year at Northwestern before tearing his ACL in November. His 43.3 Total QBR also doesn't scream NFL success, but Zac Dysert needed company in the "seventh-round picks who won't replace Peyton Manning" club.
And here is what we said in FOA 2016. First, this tidbit from the Denver chapter:
That some Bronco-watchers are hoping for 2015 seventh-round pick Trevor Siemian (5.6 yards per attempt as a senior at Northwestern) to challenge for the starting job speaks to the quality of Denver’s quarterback options in 2016, not to mention the endless capacity for all of us to instinctively overestimate the probability of unlikely events.
And this, from Siemian's player comment:
Siemian’s last college season was his worst statistically. He has impressed with his oodles of arm talent, but that strong arm couldn’t stop him from averaging 5.6 yards per attempt with seven touchdowns and 11 interceptions in a difficult situation at Northwestern. Some have suggested that Siemian could challenge for the starting job in Denver, which would shatter any logical concept of what college production means for quarterbacks.
So no, we didn't see this coming.