How the Denver Broncos can be a sleeping giant in 2021

DENVER, COLORADO - MARCH 01: Former and current Denver Broncos quarterbacks Peyton Manning and Drew Lock chat during a time out between the Toronto Raptors and the Denver Nuggets in the fourth quarter at the Pepsi Center on March 01, 2020 in Denver, Colorado. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. ( (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
DENVER, COLORADO - MARCH 01: Former and current Denver Broncos quarterbacks Peyton Manning and Drew Lock chat during a time out between the Toronto Raptors and the Denver Nuggets in the fourth quarter at the Pepsi Center on March 01, 2020 in Denver, Colorado. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. ( (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images) /
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The Denver Broncos are a sleeping giant in potentially achieving one of the league’s great teams.

This has been a popular phrase tossed around by new general manager George Paton. It is pretty easy to see with all the moves Paton and the Denver Broncos have made why Paton said himself the team is close to a sleeping giant. If someone were to look up and down the roster, then they’d see there is impressive depth and talent everywhere. For the Broncos to achieve this type of greatness they will need to be led into it by the young quarterback Drew Lock.

We can certainly call this pressure on the young quarterback; however, for the Denver Broncos to reach their elite potential the play of Lock will have to better than it was in 2020. No matter the excuse or negative Nancy you encounter it still falls on both sides agreeing Lock must play better.

The varying directions of which that leap will be ranges from “there will not be” to “top-13 quarterback jump.” Everyone has their opinion on the young man, but as alluded to previously it falls on the shoulders of Lock simply playing better. People might think Lock needs to be an elite or top-10 quarterback to take this team to next level. In my opinion, that’s simply not true. It would be an amazing sight to see it unfold, but the expectation surrounding this idea is too much.

For the Denver Broncos to truly reach this “sleeping giant” potential as Paton has put it, Lock just needs to trust his offense and not be the guy for it to run. With the ample amount of playmakers surrounding him, the Broncos should be in a good shape to average 20+ points on the season.

Also, factor in a defense that is loaded and the biggest strength on the team, the Broncos are a surprise team who can do damage if they reach the playoffs. If Lock and the offense do not meet the expectations of the fans or the coaches it will be a miserable year all season long. It is going to suck, to put it bluntly. Since Drew Lock has spent time with Peyton Manning in the off-season, there is a thing or two about Lock could learn about not being “the guy” for the entire offense.

Manning will go down as arguably one of the greatest quarterbacks ever and will be enshrined in both Hall of Fame and Ring of Fame. As a member of the Broncos, Manning put up serious numbers weekly, but it was not until his 2015 season when he realized he didn’t need to do it all.

Former general manager John Elway and who helped draft Lock was in the same boat for his back-to-back Super Bowl-winning career before he retired. Both would be great soundboards for the young quarterback. Lock is certainly capable of taking that leap, but with no trust from part of the fan base, one would have to wonder how quickly they will turn to the vile and vitriol ways once again.

As evidenced on numerous occasions, Lock has the arm and mobility to get him out of difficult situations. It is also his arm that gets him beat. This is where decision-making is right near the top of the list. A gunslinger takes the chances no one else would take and Lock took more chances than he needed to. Hero ball is an addiction. You have to know when to take the chance and when not to.

Lock needs to make more good decisions than turnover-worthy ones, to state the obvious. Surprisingly, his best trait is avoiding sacks. Lock has been one of the best at this since coming into the league.

Despite the times when he’s been injured Lock has done a better job stepping up in the pocket when it collapses. It also has helped him become of the best play-action quarterbacks in the NFL. If Denver turns to its identity of running heavy, then it will make Lock’s job easier letting him not doing that much.

Long story short, for Denver to become a sleeping giant it will need better play from its quarterback.