Broncos' Vic Fangio 'Not Surprised' with Drew Lock's Shaky NFL Preseason Debut

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorAugust 2, 2019

CANTON, OH - AUGUST 01: Drew Lock #3 of the Denver Broncos tries to avoid pressure in the first half of a preseason game against the Atlanta Falcons at Tom Benson Hall Of Fame Stadium on August 1, 2019 in Canton, Ohio. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Joe Robbins/Getty Images

Denver Broncos head coach Vic Fangio told reporters that he was "not surprised" rookie quarterback Drew Lock struggled in his team's 14-10 win over the Atlanta Falcons in the Pro Football Hall of Fame Game on Thursday.

"I was hoping for more but not surprised," Fangio said (h/t Nicki Jhabvala of The Athletic).

Lock completed just seven of 11 passes for 34 yards (3.1 yards per attempt). He was sacked twice and rushed once for six yards.

Fangio also told Michele Tafoya of NBC Sports (h/t Zac Stevens of BSN Denver) at halftime that Lock "wasn't good enough."

The first-year head coach previously referenced Lock's steeper development to reporters in a July 19 press conference.

"I don't think he's far along as far as being as NFL-ready a quarterback as he could've been," the coach said. "That's what I mean when I say he's got to get ready. He's not a quarterback yethe's a hard-throwing pitcher that doesn't know how to pitch yet. The faster he gets that, the better off he'll be and we'll be."

Lock should have time to successfully acclimate to the NFL, however, with Joe Flacco No. 1 on Denver's depth chart and Kevin Hogan sitting behind him.

At 6'4" and 228 pounds, Lock certainly has the size to excel at the next level, and his mobility (437 rushing yards and nine touchdowns in four years at Missouri) should help as well.

However, his accuracy is something to watch. Lance Zierlein of NFL.com that Lock "has as much pure talent as any quarterback from the 2018 draft" but that he "won't reach that lofty potential unless he improves his accuracy and learns to play with better in-game presence."

Fangio mentioned Lock's accuracy postgame, per Stevens.

"I thought his accuracy wasn’t clean all of the time as well as his reads..." Fangio said. "We need to get him ready. More ready than he is now."

Broncos president of football operations and general manager John Elway, one of the most highly-touted draft prospects in NFL history, also noted the tough transition for quarterbacks from college to the pros.

"I can still remember my first start in the preseason," Elway told Al Michaels and Cris Collinsworth in the NBC Sports booth (h/t Kyle Frederickson of the Denver Post). "It’s a big deal. It’s a big jump."

Elway also referenced the fact that Lock struggled against some looks that he hasn't seen or perhaps didn't expect.

"I think Drew is a very talented young guy that we think has a bright future ahead," Elway mentioned. "I think he saw some different things that he wasn't expecting. He saw a little more man coverage tonight than he was planning on and saw a little pressure."

Elway's first season didn't exactly go to plan, as he tossed twice as many interceptions as touchdowns and completed just 47.5 percent of his passes. But all he did was make nine Pro Bowls, win two Super Bowls and enter the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2004 by the time his career was over. 

Lock wasn't nearly as touted as Elway was before he started his pro career, but one poor preseason game certainly isn't an indictment on how his football future will pan out.


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