Broncos promote QB after Browns reportedly attempt to steal

Denver Broncos quarterback Brett Rypien. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports
Denver Broncos quarterback Brett Rypien. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports /

The Denver Broncos promoted quarterback Brett Rypien after the Cleveland Browns’ attempt to poach him off the practice squad.

The Denver Broncos made a flurry of roster moves on Tuesday afternoon, including the promotion of quarterback Brett Rypien from the practice squad to the active roster. The Cleveland Browns reportedly made an attempt to steal Rypien from the Broncos, per 850 KOA Broncos insider Benjamin Allbright.

The Browns, in particular, are a weird team to attempt to steal Rypien. What are they getting at here?

The Browns already have former number one pick Baker Mayfield. They have Case Keenum, who is in the midst of a three-year, $18 million contract.

They also have Nick Mullens on their practice squad.

What gives?

Cleveland Browns tried to poach Brett Rypien from Denver Broncos

Whatever the Cleveland Browns’ motivations here, the Denver Broncos felt they had to keep Rypien away from them and not only that, but to keep Rypien in Denver by promoting him to the active roster.

It won’t be Rypien’s first time on the active roster as he had a stint there last year which included starting a game against the New York Jets.

Rypien has the look of a long-term backup in the NFL, but there have been plenty of people speculating that he’s got a strong future in the NFL as a coach, maybe sooner rather than later. We’ve seen Kellen Moore of the Dallas Cowboys on the fast track to an NFL head coaching gig, and perhaps not ironically, another former Boise State star in Brett Rypien could be well on his way.

Rypien is probably not going to play at all for the Denver Broncos this season, barring something crazy happening, but after last year’s shenanigans with the masks not being worn on the group’s day off resulting in Kendall Hinton starting a game, the Broncos probably figure they can’t risk losing a guy who knows the offense well.

Kevin Stefanski and Pat Shurmur worked together with the Minnesota Vikings for a brief time before Shurmur became the head coach of the New York Giants, so perhaps that connection played a role in this attempt.

At any rate, the Denver Broncos are now using a 53-man roster spot on a third quarterback instead of supplementing their depth at other positions of actual need.

The Broncos are thin at wide receiver, even after signing David Moore off the Raiders practice squad.

They are thin on the interior offensive line where both starters Dalton Risner and Graham Glasgow could miss this week and more with injuries.

They are a little thin at inside linebacker with Josey Jewell and Jonas Griffith going on IR in consecutive weeks.

Rypien won’t play in games unless something catastrophic happens, so this is simply a roster stash.

Can the Broncos really afford that right now?

Regardless of what I think, they obviously believe that keeping Rypien is non-negotiable. They were initially on the fence about cutting him in the first place, but Rypien passed through waivers and he’s been protected in the early weeks of the season.

Rypien has been touted for his value in the QB room, so we’ll have to chalk this move up to intangibles.