Sports

Broncos pass on QBs; GM ‘happy with our group’

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — The NFL draft opened for the Denver Broncos awash in Aaron Rodgers speculation and ended roughly 72 hours later with the team having passed on every quarterback on the board.

General manager George Paton said Saturday night that Drew Lock and Teddy Bridgewater will formally compete for the starting job when training camp begins this summer and that was “what we wanted all along. ”

Asked Saturday why the Broncos finished the three-day affair without a quarterback among the 10-player draft class — decisions that included taking Alabama cornerback Patrick Surtain II at No. 9 instead of either Ohio State quarterback Justin Fields or Alabama quarterback Mac Jones — Paton said:

“I like our room right now, I think I said that [Friday] night. Teddy and Drew, they’re going to have a great competition, that’s what we wanted all along. We’ll let them compete. … Does that mean we won’t continue to look? No, [but] I say that with every position. But I do look forward to getting Teddy here with Drew and having a great competition.”

Fields was taken at No. 10 by the Chicago Bears, who traded up in the round to select him while Jones was selected by the New England Patriots at No. 15. The Broncos had traded for Bridgewater, who the Minnesota Vikings selected in the first round of the 2014 draft when Paton was the team’s assistant general manager, on Wednesday, a little more than 24 hours before the first round began.

Paton also added the team was never close to selecting any of the available quarterbacks in Day 2 or Day 3 of the draft.

“We did not,” Paton said when asked if he’d considered it over the past two days. “It just didn’t fall our way and we’re happy with our group.”

Asked if he still would look to add a free-agent quarterback, Paton said: “We’re always looking. You know what the market looks like right now — it’s not great.

“We’ll see … but we like our two.”

Lock, who has been a regular in the Broncos’ facility throughout the offseason, tied for the league lead in interceptions last season, his first as a starter, and was last in the league in completion percentage as the Broncos finished 5-11 and missed the playoffs for the fifth consecutive season. Both Paton and coach Vic Fangio have praised Lock’s work so far in the offseason, and Paton has said he still believes in Lock’s potential.

Bridgewater threw 15 touchdown passes in in 15 starts for the Carolina Panthers last season to go with 11 interceptions. He finished with 3,733 yards passing as well as a 69 percent completion rate.

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