Anytime the name Brock Osweiler is mentioned there seems to be a wave of irritability that washes over Denver and Mile High Stadium at Invesco Field in Sports Authority Stadium….errrr….the place where the Broncos play football. Ah Brock; Elway’s reason for not really having a plan B. After all, the Duke was confident enough to think he could not only sign the biggest free agent in Broncos history but also manage to draft his protege in the second round of the 2012 draft. But, as we all know, Elway should have had a plan B. In 2015 Brock played well when Manning was “hurt” and led Denver through a crucial stretch of games that ultimately helped them secure a number one seed in the playoffs. But, after a few misreads against San Diego (last game of 2015 season) good ole Brock was benched. Enter Peyton Manning. I’ll admit that I was excited to see Manning save the day and be the starting QB heading into the playoffs and of course, their SB 50 win, but even I knew Osweiler was “mishandled.” So, the Twilight actor look alike rejected Elway’s post-Manning offer and took slightly more money from Houston. Perhaps just to prove a point to Denver that he was no one’s backup, not even a future hall of famer’s.
Osweiler played below average in Houston but somehow managed to win a playoff game. Yes, it was against an Oakland team that played without their guy in Derek Carr but hey, a playoff win is a playoff win. And the last time i checked, one more playoff win than Kirk Cousins……..facts are facts.
So, is Brock better than Kirk? Hardly. But for the money Cousins will likely demand, it almost seems like Osweiler would give you more bang for your buck and allow Denver to repair the O-line in free agency and the draft. I firmly believe that if Denver can find that run game that has been so elusive the last few seasons, a guy like Brock Osweiler could very well be good enough to help the Broncos get back to the playoffs.
The case for Brock? 3 reasons. He’s cheap, he’s more determined than ever and he’s tall….ok, seriously, the third reason is simply his number aren’t that horrendous when he has a solid supporting cast. In fact, his numbers might look pretty good with a good rushing attack. In 2015, when he took over for Manning, Brock helped Denver win 4 games. In 3 of those games, he had over 250 yds and a supporting rushing attack of 170 yds, 179 yds and 134 yds. In Houston, he started off ok, but with a rushing attack that only averaged 4 yards per carry (18th in the league) He was asked to do too much and started pressing. He’s a balanced QB. He may not win you a lot of games, but with the right offensive model, he proved he can do enough to help the process along. Is he the long term answer? I don’t think so. But he needs to be the transition guy or the place holder if you will until a QB comes along that is closer to a sure thing. In this year’s draft, other than Darnold and Rosen, I don’t think that “sure thing” is there. Love Josh Allen, I really do, but I am not ready to say he’s the next big thing in Denver.
Bottom line: Elway can’t miss in the draft or free agency. If he does……it could be the first domino in a chain of events that could lead to his demise. So, the safe bet? Go Offensive line in the first round, resist the urge to sign Kirk Cousins and give Plan A part two one more shot.