Broncos Lose More Than a Game to Ravens

Teddy Bridgewater Broncos

Getty Broncos QB Teddy Bridgewater likely wasn't all smiles following his rough outing against the Ravens in Week 4.

Naysayers of early success by the Denver Broncos will revel in some Monday morning quarterbacking, following the team’s Week 4 loss to the Baltimore Ravens.

The Broncos (3-1) were given their first defeat of the season, 23-7, but the bigger story may be yet another key member of the team getting knocked out of the game.

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Teddy TKO

Starting quarterback Teddy Bridgewater had a rough go against the Ravens’ defense, as he went 7-of-16 for 65 yards and a touchdown, before bowing out for good at the start of the third quarter with a concussion.

Bridgewater, who was under duress throughout most of the first half, was sent to the medical tent on the Broncos’ sideline following Denver’s final offensive play of the first half. The Louisville product was knocked out of the game by Ravens linebacker Odafe Owehon. The Broncos’ medical staff kept Bridgewater in their care throughout halftime, and when the second half commenced, it was backup quarterback Drew Lock who was seen warming up with his helmet strapped.

Baltimore was already ahead at the half, 17-7, and the Broncos never threatened again.

Lock finished 12-of-21 for 113 yards and an interception, to close out the contest. Lock’s interception came in the back of the end zone, with seconds remaining in regulation when the outcome was no longer in doubt.

The extent of Bridgewater’s injury is yet to be determined, and who knows how long he’ll be in the concussion protocol, but one thing is for sure, the injuries to key Broncos are really starting to add up — with 2021 looking a lot like 2020.

A tweet by Romi Bean, of CBS Denver, displayed just how lengthy that list is becoming.

That’s now five offensive starters who have not been able to make it out of the first quarter of the 2021 season unscathed.

Locked & Loaded?

Lock’s supporters can say that his interception should be overlooked as a team desperate to have some positive momentum in an otherwise lost cause, but when examining the throw, it unearthed the ugly tendency that helped head coach Vic Fangio make the decision to go with the steadier Bridgewater in the first place.

Denver was at the Baltimore five-yard line, with 10 seconds remaining, when Lock took the shotgun snap and lofted an underthrown toss to Courtland Sutton — who was blanketed by Anthony Averett.

It was the kind of underwhelming back-footed throw by Lock that reared its head far too many times in 2020. It was the only turnover for either team. Ironically, Lock noted to Zac Stevens of DNVR Broncos, following the Ravens loss, that Bridgewater has taken him and backup Brett Rypien under his wing to hone their footwork, following practices. The interception suggested there’s still lots of work needed.

Stevens also noted that Lock said he is preparing as if he’ll be the starter when the Broncos travel to Pittsburgh to take on the Steelers, October 10. If that feels like deja vu for Lock, it’ll be because his 2020 season was ruined in Pittsburgh, in a Week 2 loss, when he damaged his labrum and rotator cuff of his throwing shoulder.

Whoever lines up under center against the Steelers, they will undoubtedly face scrutiny all week, because the Bridgewater injury — and the overall lackluster performance by the Broncos’ offense — has opened the door for numerous questions and a bit of quarterback controversy talk.

Follow Tony Williams on Twitter: @TBone8

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