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2021 Broncos Training Camp: Day 2 news and notes

Did Teddy Bridgewater make the first big statement in the teams' quarterback compeitition?

NFL: Denver Broncos Training Camp Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Day two of Broncos camp is now in the books and we had some developments in the quarterback competition. Teddy Bridgewater was the clear winner today, but we’re only just two days into this so there’s still a long way to go. We also have the defense stepping up, Tim Patrick hauling in three touchdown receptions, Calvin Anderson getting the nod at right tackle for two days straight, news and notes, an injury update, quotes, and more.

Teddy wins the day while Lock has an inconsistent showing

Today was the first big movement in the Broncos quarterback battle. Yesterday, it was a wash/slight lean to Lock while today, it was clearly a win for Teddy Bridgewater and it wasn’t close according to some onlookers.

Lock didn’t complete a pass during today’s practice until the team did the red zone drills to end the practice. According to DNVR’s Zac Stevens, Lock went 0-10 to start practice and just looked bad. The Broncos' defense was playing well, but Lock would have been sacked multiple times, slow processing, and was inaccurate as well. He did turn it on late with three touchdown passes in the red zone drill but it was a very slow start for Drew.

If Lock wants to win this battle, he needs fewer days like today. Being inconsistent and still struggling with some of the same things is disappointing considering how people are banking on his development this offseason. Yes, we’re only two practices in, but it’s enough to be concerned in my opinion.

As for Teddy, he wasn’t amazing, but he was consistent, and that’s important. He’s poised in the pocket, makes quick decisions, gets the ball out quick, limits turnovers and the ball rarely hits the ground.

Through two practices Teddy Bridgewater has only thrown two competitions and both were drops. One by Royce Freeman and the other Tyrie Cleveland. This is the sort of consistency that will likely stand out to Head Coach Vic Fangio. It will be something to watch moving forward, but in my opinion, the needle is beginning to turn in Teddy’s favor.

Bridgewater also played well in the red zone where he threw two touchdowns as well. It was a solid showing by Bridgewater.

Touchdown Tim Patrick

During the red zone period, Big Tim Patrick and his reliable hands became a popular target for both quarterbacks. Patrick hauled in three touchdown receptions during that period and reminded fans that he’s also a damn good receiver as well.

While most eyes are on the returning Courtland Sutton and the two explosive second-year receivers, Tim Patrick was the big play guy today. He’s coming off a 51 reception for 742 yards and 6 touchdown campaign last season and is looking to improve on that this season.

The Broncos receiving unit looks loaded. A healthy Courtland Sutton would be a gamechanger while Jerry Jeudy appears to be on the verge of a breakout season. Then you have the explosive K.J. Hamler who is a homerun threat whenever he gets the ball in his mitts. Then, you have Patrick who catches everything and uses his big body to be a red zone thrat.

The defense showed up on day two

After day one where a few commented on how the offense looked better or at least equal with the defense, the defense showed up today

The momentum shifted immediately when Vic Fangio sent Justin Strnad up the middle on a blitz and he would have sacked Drew Lock within seconds of the snap. Shelby Harris and McTelvin Agim swatted passed, Caden Sterns had an interception, the defensive line constantly pressured the quarterbacks (mostly from the interior per reports) and the coverage was tight. Drew Lock was sacked multiple times while Teddy was sacked once as well. This is hopefully a taste of what is to come during the season for the Broncos' defense.

Here’s what defensive lineman Shelby Harris had to say about what he expects from the Broncos defense.

“From [OLB Bradley] Chubb we know what he’s going to give and with everybody that we have—everybody’s going to be healthy this year. I expect big things from everybody on our line. Everyone always want to say they expect 10-plus sacks, but I think everybody can do it across the board. We’re very confident in our group, and I really feel like we can make a difference.”

The Broncos have a healthy and loaded defense which hopefully leads to big things from this unit.

Calvin Anderson gets the start at right tackle for the second straight day

Probably the most surprising development from Broncos Camp thus far has been Calvin Anderson being the starting right tackle. He started day one which surprised most because the assumption was that Bobby Massie was the guy. Then, after practice on day one, Vic Fangio was asked if there would be a rotation at right tackle and he said “Yeah, every day will be somebody different.”

Well, Calvin Anderson was back out there today with the first team. Fangio called him a viable candidate for the job and is backing that up with their actions at least thus far.

“He’s a good athlete. He plays hard, plays tough, and I just like the way he plays. He got a couple games in last year, and I think he’s a viable candidate for that job. I really do.”

Garett Bolles also heaped praise at Anderson after Wednesday’s practice where he talked to reporters. He said that Anderson is on that next step of his career and talked about how close the two have become.

“Calvin is on that step. I love Calvin dearly, he’s like my little brother. He lived with me all last year, we train together, we talk all the time, we text all the time, we watch film all the time. So he has it, and it’s up to him. So if he wants that job he going to go out and get it. I’m excited for him. He brings a whole strong side to that right side, so I’m really looking forward to seeing his improvement every day as we talk. We’re like big brother little brother, so I love that relationship, and I’m grateful he’s here.”

If Hall of Fame offensive line coach Mike Munchak can turn Anderson into a solid starting right tackle, that would be a wonderful development. That position, as we all know, has been an issue for what seems like the past decade, so finding someone who can man that position for cheap for a few years would be great.

News and Notes

  • Right Tackle Calvin Anderson earned the start at right tackle for the second straight day over veteran Bobby Massie.
  • Linebacker Justin Strnad sacked Drew Lock on the first play of practice when he blitzed up the middle.
  • Rookie Safety Caden Sterns intercepted a Brett Rypien pass during practice today which was the first turnover of Camp thus far.
  • Second-year defensive lineman McTelvin Agim had a deflected pass early in practice and played well today.
  • Head Coach Vic Fangio indicated that K.J. Hamler is in play to be a punt returner but needs to get better at catching the ball.

Injury Update

  • The Broncos had everyone that wasn’t on the Covid list available for today’s practice
  • Rookie cornerback Kary Vincent Jr. could be back Monday according to Head Coach Vic Fangio while rookie safety Jamar Johnson is on the 10-day Covid list.

Quotes

Head Coach Vic Fangio on the benefits of red zone work for younger players and the overall importance of implementing it into practice

“They have to understand the coverage principles, No. 1. Things change in the red zone. We play the same coverages that we play up field, but we tweak them because of the red zone. They have to be able to execute and know those differences. You have to be able to play fast. A six-yard gain out in the field may not be that big of a deal, but down there it is. We have to play tight; we have to play decisive, and we have to have a total understanding of what we’re doing. The receivers have to understand the tightness of it. We have an end line. There’s 12 defenders on defense. It’s bad for the defense to be down there—however it happened—but it is a defensive advantage. Nobody can get beat deep anymore. The offense has to change. Quarterback placement of the ball has to change. Are you throwing it in the front of the end zone or the back of the end zone? That makes a difference. All those little coaching points, that’s why we spend a lot of time on it almost every day. I’m not going to say every day because it might not happen, but we will do some red zone work. It might be a little bit; it might be a lot. [Most days], we’ll do some.”

Head Coach Vic Fangio on WR Courtland Sutton’s progress

“Yeah, I’m seeing progress. I [saw] yesterday and some today that he’s still holding back a little bit. He worked in the offseason, but all his work in the offseason was on air. Now you put the defenders out there and it’s a totally different ball game. He’s got to react to where they are. He doesn’t have clear paths all the time. He’s got to change [things] unchoreographed and suddenly that he didn’t think he’d have to change. I see a little hesitancy. I don’t want to alarm the alarm. It’s not, but he’s progressing. He’s going to keep getting better and better.”

Head Coach Vic Fangio on QB Drew Lock improving his decision making

“I think that comes with experience and playing and having an offseason in the system and having a training camp in the system. All the work that he put in [during] the offseason studying—he is a smarter quarterback. There are two stages to that. One is learning it while you’re in a meeting room, while you’re studying tape. Then, you have to be able to do it while you’re on your feet with the rush coming in, making split-second decisions.

Running Back Melvin Gordon on his impressions of RBs Mike Boone and Javonte Williams

“Just explosive. Like I’ve said before, being here in minicamp, [RB Mike] Boone is explosive. I think he can be a playmaker, and I like [RB] Javonte [Williams]. [He] has really good vision and really good feet. The game is going to be faster when we get into preseason. It’ll slow down eventually like it does for everyone. That’s when you can really get a good feel for the player. When we’re out here, we don’t have any pads on. You really can’t feel it out how you want to feel it out because when players put on pads, they are a whole different player. They might rise to the occasion, and they might lower. You never know. I think both of them will show us something. Come preseason, that’s when we’re really going to be—especially Javonte. We’ve seen Boone and we know what Boone can do. He has highlights all over YouTube. As far as Javonte, we can really see what he does under the lights.”

Running Back Melvin Gordon On what he means by he got “too caught up in it” with Lindsay

“I mean, it’s pretty self-explanatory. A lot of people love Phil here. It was as if I got drafted to the Packers with the how the fans would feel, how the media and how the people would feel. They feel like you’re taking away from their guy. It was in my head a little bit. I got over it and I kind of dealt with what it was. I said we’re going to share this thing and we’re going to make our plays. His number is going to get called and mine will get called. We have to go out here and make some plays. We were in a position last year where we could have—I think that helped a lot, too. We got put in a position where we could have made the playoffs if we could have gotten on a little streak. My mind kind of shifted more towards getting into the playoffs because it’s fun. I’ve only been one time, but I had a blast. My mindset shifted more towards that than how people feel about me being here trying to take the light from Phil. Phil is a good dude. [He and I] had our conversations. Good dude, great dude. We still talk. I wish him the best with everything he has going on. I gave my advice to him, and I always did when we were out there. It looked like we were competing against each other. People thought we were bumping heads. I still gave my advice to him because at the end of the day, it’s bigger than both of us. Right now, my mindset is shifted more towards getting to the playoffs, rather than what everybody else thinks about me.”

Defensive lineman Shelby Harris on defensive lineman McTelvin Agim and his growth from last year to this year

“He had OTAs this year. People don’t realize how big that is just getting the reps. The constant reps. Even if it’s just [individual] reps, or team reps. It’s just constant reps. He’s made leaps and bounds from where he was last year. I’m excited to see him play this year.”

Tweets From Camp