In the wake of Drew Lock’s injury. the Broncos are signing former No. 3 overall pick Blake Bortles, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
Denver will be Bortles’ third team in the NFL, following stints with the Jaguars and Rams. Bortles will join the Broncos to give them support under center.
In his career, Bortles has a record of 24-49 and while all of those losses (and some of the wins) are not his fault, the other numbers are not flattering. Bortles has completed just 59.3% of his throws during this time in the league, tossing 103 touchdowns and 75 interceptions.
Jeff Driskel, who went18-for-34 for 256 yards while adding two touchdown passes and an interception in relief against the Steelers on Sunday, will be the team’s Week 3 starter with Bortles filling in behind him eventually.
There are hurdles to Bortles suiting up in Week 3 because of COVID-19 Protocols. Head coach Vic Fangio discussed the issues earlier in the week (via the team’s website).
“That’s the one thing about these [testing] protocols that we have found out the hard way here,” Fangio said. “Even if we were to bring a guy in today, they’re not going to be eligible to come and partake in meetings or practice until Friday or Saturday because they have to pass so many days of tests before they’re allowed in the building. That’s one of the downsides of this that us and other clubs are feeling.”
Latest on QB Drew Lock
Lock injured his shoulder on Sunday vs. the Steelers. It was diagnosed a sprained AC joint in his shoulder and is expected to be out 2-to-6 weeks. However, the Broncos are hopeful that Lock can return before the team’s Week 8 bye.
“He just got a bad bruise there, and when it’s your throwing shoulder, it’s going to take time to heal,” Fangio said (via the team’s website). “It’s got to calm down [and] get his strength back to where he fully has it and he can operate at 100 percent.”
In addition to Lock, the Broncos have been hit with several injuries. Von Miller and A.J. Bouye are on injured reserve, Phillip Lindsay is expect to miss 2-to-3 more weeks with a toe ailment, and Courtland Sutton was placed on IR with an ACL tear this week.
“I’m disappointed for the players that have gotten injured,” Fangio said. “It’s never good to get injured on an individual, personal basis. It does have a negative effect on the team. I’m not going to insult anybody’s intelligence that losing the types of players and the amount of players that we’ve lost doesn’t have some type of effect. We do have good players here in the building still. They’re going to come rally [and] look at it as an opportunity for them to go out and play good [and] show what they’ve got. We’re going to get them ready as a coaching staff.”
Denver takes on the Buccaneers on Sunday and they’ll have fans in attendance, as Denver has been permitted to have 7.5% capacity (5,700 fans).
Here’s the Broncos schedule before their bye week:
- Week 3 – Tampa Buccaneers
- Week 4 – at New York Jets
- Week 5 – at New England Patriots
- Week 6 – Miami Dolphins
- Week 7 – Kansas City Chiefs
Broncos Didn’t Consider Colin Kaepernick
Prior to signing Bortles, Denver had to do their homework on several free agent quarterbacks available. One QB that the Broncos did not consider was Colin Kaepernick, as Pro Football Action relays.
“His name hasn’t come up in the brief discussions I’ve had with John Elway,” coach Vic Fangio said earlier in the week.
Kaepernick hasn’t played in the NFL since 2016 when he last suited up with the 49ers. He was nearly traded to Denver back in 2016, though no trade ever came to fruition.