The Denver Broncos will travel to Buffalo this week to take on the Bills for their second preseason game. Once again, Broncos fans will not get to see Russell Wilson throwing passes in a live game just yet.
“I think we’re gonna go with Josh again,” Denver head coach Nathaniel Hackett said when asked about who the starting quarterback would be against Buffalo.
Josh Johnson excited Broncos Country last week in his preseason debut against the Cowboys. The former fifth-round pick finished the first half with 172 passing yards and tossing up two touchdowns to Kendall Hinton and Seth Williams.
Johnson’s stat line looks good in the box score finishing 16/23, but in the first quarter, Johnson didn’t look that great. To open the game, the career backup started by throwing three straight incompletions before he hit Williams over the middle for a small gain. If Johnson had led the pass to Williams, the rookie wide receiver could’ve had a huge gain for the Denver offense.
After going three for seven in the first quarter, Johnson would go 13/16 in the second quarter.
Broncos Have a Backup QB Competition
For the past six seasons Denver has struggled to find their franchise quarterback and they used backup after backup to try and fill the hole. Now that the Broncos found their future in Russell Wilson, Denver can finally take a step back and figure out who will be the backup to their future hall of fame quarterback.
During training camp, third-string quarterback Brett Rypien has looked better than Johnson. Rypien has made smarter decisions and been able to move his offense down the field at important times.
In one practice, the Broncos were running a two-minute drill and the top two offenses led by Wilson and Johnson were unable to get the ball down the field. Then Rypien got his chance and he took advantage of his opportunity. The former Boise St. Bronco got his offense inside the 10-yard line before firing a strike into the corner of the endzone for a game-winning touchdown as time expired. Practice would end after that.
Rypien’s stat line didn’t look as flashy as Johnson’s did in the first preseason game, but he still looked good.
Finishing the game with 113 yards on 8/18 passing, Rypien was able to drive his offense down the field after starting the drive on his own one-yard line. On first-down, Rypien threw a bomb to speedy wide receiver Jalen Virgil for a 40+ yard gain.
Late in the drive, Rypien would’ve had a touchdown pass if it wasn’t for running back JaQuan Hardy dropping an easy ball without a defender around.
Bottom line is neither quarterback threw an interception in preseason game No. 1.
Even play-by-play guru Steve Levy asked color commentators Ryan Harris and Chad Brown during the game if Hackett should start Rypien against Buffalo.
Depending on how the quarterbacks play Saturday, the battle could be over or continuing.
Special Teams Coordinator Wears His SB Ring At Home
Denver’s special teams coordinator Dwayne Stukes received a Super Bowl ring this year after winning a Super Bowl with the Los Angeles Rams last season. Today after practice, Stukes was asked if he’s shown off his ring yet.
“I cannot lie to you; I wear it every night when I go home.” Stukes added, “My wife looks at me like I’m crazy.”
Stukes mentioned that if players want him to bring it into the building, he’ll bring it in.
“I want to get us a Super Bowl ring this year.”