New Denver Broncos running back Melvin Gordon believes second-year quarterback Drew Lock has major potential.
Appearing on Ian Rapoport's Rapsheet and Friends podcast Monday, Gordon said he believes Lock will be "a monster" once he develops (h/t Garrett Stepien of 247Sports.com):
"I think he can be a really good player. He makes some really good throws. I think when he gets full control of the offense, when he's really out there dictating and telling guys what to do and how to do it, I think when he gets that control and his confidence gets to that level, he's going to be a monster. Obviously, the last couple of games, he built that confidence. ... But just more games under his belt with that confidence, it'll just flourish. And when he walks and talks, you can just see it come out. I think he's going to be a bad man."
Lock, 23, started five games for the Broncos in 2019, throwing for 1,020 yards, seven touchdowns and three interceptions while completing 64.1 percent of his passes. The Broncos went 4-1 in those starts, and Lock heads into the 2020 season as the team's starter after Joe Flacco was released in March.
Gordon isn't the only one to sing Lock's praises this offseason. Guard Dalton Risner called him "one of the biggest competitors that I've ever met" last week:
"I think that Drew brings a special edge to the game," he added. "When he gets out on the field, we all get excited. We all believe that when it's third down and long, Drew can still make something happen—especially with Courtland Sutton out there on the edge and now Jerry Jeudy and KJ Hamler. We have the guys to make it happen."
Not everybody is buying stock in the second-year quarterback, however. Former NFL quarterback and NFL Network analyst Kurt Warner believes Lock has a long way to go before he can be considered a franchise player (h/t Jon Heath of Broncos Wire):
"Do I believe he is definitely a franchise quarterback? I don't have the answer to that quite yet. We saw moments. We saw the big-time throws that we knew he could make at this level. I didn't see the consistency. I didn't see the decision-making top to bottom, week in and week out that I want to see from a franchise quarterback.
"So, there was enough to see moments and go, 'Man, if we can build on this and he can become more consistent and we can put players around him,' as John Elway did, then he's got the potential to possibly be that guy. But I'm not a believer that he is there yet or will be there this year. I think there's a lot of work to be done."
Still, there is excitement in Denver when it comes to Lock, from both his teammates and fans. His development in year two is the biggest storyline for the team. If he plays well, the Broncos will have a very exciting, dangerous offense given the amount of playmakers they surrounded him with this offseason.
If he struggles, however, the team's entire rebuilding timeline could be pushed back even further.