On Monday afternoon, Broncos Head Coach Vic Fangio announced that Joe Flacco is injured and will miss time. Fangio said, “Joe’s not going to play this week. He’s got a disc or neck injury and he’ll definitely miss this week. Then we’ll reevaluate after the bye and see where it’s at.”
Brandon Allen was announced as the starter against the Browns. The coaching staff will also make a decision between Drew Lock and Brett Rypien as the backup quarterback.
Allen who is 27 years old and in his 3rd season, will take his first regular season snap this Sunday at Empower Field at Mile High. At Arkansas, Allen finished his collegiate career with 7,463 passing yards, 64 passing touchdowns, and 26 interceptions.
Then he was drafted by the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2016 (Round 6, Pick 201) and was the 3rd string QB behind Blake Bortles and Chad Henne.
He was eventually waived by the Jags and claims off waivers by the Los Angeles Rams. During his time with the Rams, he was inactive as the 3rd string QB behind Jared Goff and Sean Mannion. The Rams later released Allen, who was then claimed off waivers by the Broncos on September 1, 2019.
Lance Zierlein of NFL Network, described Allen as a mobile quarterback that is proficient with bootlegs and rollouts.
At 6’1” 217 pounds, he can can set up in the pocket quickly, and has the arm strength to deliver sharp passes through tight windows in the middle of the field.
Allen has been criticized for staring down wide receivers and struggling in his progressions. He can also appear eager to run when pressure is applied, causing concern with a light frame.
Ironically, he has been compared to former Broncos QB Case Keenum, while others compare him to journeyman QB Brian Hoyer.
With an inexperienced quarterback taking the reigns, expect a heaping dose of rushing from Phillip Lindsay and Royce Freeman. Freeman, is coming off back to back games with rushing touchdowns, while Lindsay continues to average 4.5 yards per rush.
When asked how comfortable he thinks Allen is to start on Sunday, Fangio said, “I think as comfortable as he can be given the lack of reps in practice. The starter gets the bulk of the reps and he got here after preseason. There is some carry over to the offense that he came from to here, so that obviously helped.”
Fangio explained Allen hasn’t received a lot of practice with the starting unit. “I’ve seen him a lot on the scout team and when he’s been in there a little bit on offense. I think the guy’s got a little something to him and we’ll devise a plan for him.”
Broncos Country has been demanding changes particularly on the offensive side of the ball for weeks.
This Sunday, they’ll get one change with a new starting quarterback, Brandon Allen.