The Denver Broncos Need a New QB

Denver Broncos head coach Vance Joseph’s 70-20 loss at Miami ranks as one of their worst defeats ever, but it certainly wasn’t their only setback of this magnitude.

Since John Elway left Denver, quarterbacks have faced immense pressure to replace him as franchise signal-callers. Are the Broncos capable of finding their next franchise quarterback?


The Denver Broncos were established in 1960 as one of the founding members of the American Football League. While initially struggling, their initial decade resulted in no winning seasons – until finally breaking through in 1977 under linebackers Tom Jackson and Randy Gradishar’s “Orange Crush” defense that propelled Denver all the way to its inaugural Super Bowl appearance in January 1978.

That Super Bowl victory marked the beginning of a Broncos dynasty that would see them capture two additional championships over the decade, led by legendary quarterback John Elway and their performances at Invesco Field at Mile High – which continues to draw sell-out crowds today.

Even as they struggled with inconsistent quarterback play throughout most of the 2021 season, the Broncos managed to improve their record in their final regular-season game by trading for Russell Wilson of the Seattle Seahawks and trading him back into their roster in an exchange deal for a draft pick from Denver‘s opponent team (Seahawks). Wilson immediately reinvigorated their squad and marked another period of success for Denver.


The Denver Broncos began play in the American Football League before merging with the National Football League (NFL). On September 9, 1960 in a preseason match-up against Boston Patriots, they became the first AFL franchise ever to defeat an NFL opponent and ultimately defeat them by 5 touchdowns.

Bob Howsman, who also owned a minor league baseball franchise, founded the Denver Broncos in 1970. To capture the spirit of Denver he chose their name – which would endure for over fifty years – after its iconic wild west animal emblematizing them – “Bronco”. This moniker stuck.

The Denver Broncos have won two Super Bowl championships since 1995: in 1998 and 1999. Their 1998 victory marked the first time a team won back-to-back titles consecutively; its offense was led by quarterback John Elway and rookie running back Terrell Davis. For 1995 season they implemented Zone blocking scheme and hired head coach Mike Shanahan; since then their competition level remains competitive; even drafting quarterback Jay Cutler after Jake Plummer disappointed significantly during veteran’s performance period was maintained by this new acquisition.

Current team

After Peyton Manning retired, the Broncos struggled under quarterbacks Mark Sanchez and Trevor Siemian and failed to qualify for playoffs both years, finishing 7-9 and 9-7 respectively.

The team brought on veteran free agent quarterback Case Keenum on a two-year deal and hired former Chicago Bears defensive coordinator Vance Joseph as its head coach.

Payton’s staff includes wide receivers coach Keary Colbert, running backs coach Zach Azzanni and offensive quality control coach Ray Malavasi. Reportedly, however, additional assistant defensive line coach and quality control positions must still be filled before training camp begins in 2023.

The Denver Broncos play their home games at Empower Field at Mile High, in Denver, Colorado. This franchise has long attracted huge crowds even during difficult periods in their history.


Denver will look to add another quarterback through free agency or the draft this offseason, though any veteran addition would only serve as a short-term fix at that position.

One option worth exploring would be the trade of All-Pro corner Patrick Surtain II, as his contract won’t increase significantly and has been the cornerstone of an otherwise lackluster defense.

The team may also consider trading Juwan Thompson or Greg Dulcich, both of whom are susceptible to injuries and don’t fit perfectly into what Payton envisions for his passing game. But any move could prove worth the risk if it increases draft capital to facilitate a full-scale rebuild – losing these final two games would hurt, but ultimately it could prove beneficial as it allows Denver Broncos players to fight for draft position – it could even turn out for their long-term benefit!