By: Logan Ball
It’s not an everyday occurrence to lose a legend. Losing a figure with such a prominent legacy can make it feel like there is no hope for the future. Many thought this when Kurt Warner left St. Louis or when Ray Lewis retired after 17 years in Baltimore.
The most recent of these departed living legends is Peyton Manning. The NFL’s all-time leader in career passing yards, passing touchdowns and career wins.
Since his withdrawal from the league, many people had questioned who would step up as the Broncos new quarterback coming off a Super Bowl victory.
It appeared that Denver was ready to rebuild with their first round draft of Paxton Lynch. Lynch, who had a sensational collegiate career at the University of Memphis, was a highly touted prospect and that was enough for some folks.
But then came the signings of life long backup Austin Davis and a quick stint with a washed up Mark Sanchez, and by this point there wasn’t a soul who could confidently tell you who was going to run this team’s offense.
But then he emerged. Out of the crisp Denver air, an unlikely candidate arrived on a silver platter as golden as his future scattered around his fluorescent being. His name was Trevor Siemian.
Siemian, the 2015 seventh round pick out of Northwestern whose only snap his rookie year was to take a knee, started to surface as Gary Kubiak’s guy.
He surprised Denver in the preseason with his poise and wisdom, but that was not enough for some because this guy is still not Peyton Manning.
Nevertheless, Siemian entered Week 1 in a game no one gave him a chance to win against Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers.
While Siemian only threw 26 passes for 178 yards with a touchdown and two interceptions, the come-from-behind Broncos victory resonated with Broncos fans that he has potential.
But where did he come from? How have the Broncos not lost yet?
These things are supposed to happen for teams in this position but Denver never cracked, they just seemed to pick right back up from where they left off.
But as for Trevor, he knew this day would come.
In his high school days back in Orlando, Siemian wasn’t a highly recruited athlete. As a three-star quarterback, he received offers from schools like Florida International, Middle Tennessee State, East Carolina and Western Michigan.
It wasn’t until a Northwestern offer came his way that Siemian was starting to be recognized with some potential.
In Evanston, Siemian appeared in eight games while throwing a total of 26 passes that season.
Sophomore year he would earn the starting job and keep in for the rest of his time as a Wildcat.
Leading the team to a bowl game 20 wins in those three seasons, Siemian was seen as a value, which led Denver, managed by one of the game’s greatest players John Elway, to take the young kid out of Orlando.
Fast forward past the rookie year behind Manning and the first game where he starts to break out of his second year shell, and this guy has some confidence going into week two.
Against Manning’s replacement from Indianapolis, Andrew Luck, Siemian reassured his newly found fan base he was no joke.
While only throwing an interception and not a single touchdown, his 266 yards on a 67 percent completion rate got the job done. While Siemian’s throws did not score, they played a major key in working the ball up-field and allowing the run game to finish the drives.
After a 34-20 victory in that second week, experts agree that last week proved he is ready for the big stage.
Playing in hostile Cincinnati, a playoff team looking for vengeance after losing to a rival Steelers squad, the Broncos’ chances were no good.
The Bengals came in as the heavy favorite and rightfully so, no everyone except for Trevor Siemian.
He wasted no time in the second quarter, completing a 41 yard pass to Emmanuel Sanders for the first touchdown of the night.
(Featured Image: Jeffrey Beall, Flickr)