Lock, however, disagrees.
“Not being able to be with the guys as much as you normally would won’t change how I feel heading into the season,” Lock said on Friday. “I still want to do things before COVID that I thought I could do this year. I still want to do these things. ”
Lock, who started the Broncos’ last five games in 2019 as a rookie and is ready for his first full season as a team starter, admitted things could get bumpy at the start of the season at times, but he thinks the Broncos could still freeze quickly. .
“The real factor is, yeah, we haven’t had enough time with each other,” Lock said. “We’re going to have a shortened time frame, we’re going to have to pick up a lot of stuff. extremely fast things. It might not be the prettiest at first, but our job is to make the mistake, learn from it and try not to make that mistake more than once because we don’t. really don’t have time to keep making the same mistakes. I still expect the same things from us this year because we will be doing extra work to make up for this free time. ”
If the Broncos field rookie receivers Jerry Jeudy and KJ Hamler in a three-wide wide receiver set at the start of the season, the average age of this potential roster could be just 24. Elway was asked earlier this week. if, due to the offseason structure, expectations for the offense would be different, especially since the planned preseason games and joint practices with the Chicago Bears have been canceled.
“Yeah, they’re definitely tempered,” Elway said. “I don’t think we could expect that we couldn’t expect no offseason to come out and hit all the cylinders. I know we spent a lot of time in Zoom meetings, and [offensive coordinator] Tap [Shurmur] and his staff on the attacking side spent a lot of time with it, but there’s nothing quite like being on the training ground. It’s going to be a slow build. ”
Elway added, “Drew’s expectations – I mean, he played well for five games, but it was only five games last year. He hasn’t had the offseason this year, which for young footballers is always very, very important. … I was hoping to have a few pre-season games just because we’re so young on the attacking side, so I could see someone else. We are going to have to face it. Today’s world is adapting, so we’ll ‘I will adapt to it. ”
Lock has held pitching sessions in recent weeks with several players on the team, including wide receiver Courtland Sutton, Jeudy and Hamler. The Broncos went 4-1 in Lock’s five starts to close out season 19 as he threw for 1,020 yards to go with seven touchdowns and three interceptions in those games.
The offense has struggled for much of the year – the unit finished 28th or worse in scores, total offense and third-down conversions – but three of the seven games in which the team have scored 20 or more points were with Lock in the quarterback.