Joined: 20 Jun 2018
|Posted: Sun Oct 07, 2018 2:31 am
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Kirk Cousins was perfect in his cameo Authentic Jameis Winston Jersey , and then kicked back and watched two former Broncos quarterbacks tear apart their old teammates.
Cousins completed all four of his passes in the Vikings' 42-28 exhibition victory Saturday night, including a 1-yard touchdown strike on a quick slant to Stefon Diggs .
"I think it was a smooth first drive but it is a small sample size and the next couple of weeks will be a good test for us," Cousins said.
Diggs called it a good first step.
"He's a good quarterback," Diggs said. "He makes some great throws."
Case Keenum wasn't nearly as sharp in his Denver debut, completing just 1 of 4 passes for 5 yards spanning two drives.
"It's just frustrating not playing well and you don't have a chance to bounce back from it," Keenum said.
Cousins was the crown jewel of this year's free-agent class of quarterbacks, signing an $84 million, three-year deal in Minneapolis. That meant Keenum was out two months after leading the Vikings to the NFC championship, and he signed a $36 million, two-year deal with Denver.
The Broncos then traded their starter, Trevor Siemian, to the Vikings to serve as Cousins' backup 鈥?so long as he beats out Kyle Sloter, another former Denver QB.
That left Paxton Lynch and Chad Kelly vying for No. 2 duty in Denver.
So, this preseason opener was filled with quarterback intrigue.
After Cousins' single series 鈥?one in which he didn't have to face Von Miller 鈥?Siemian led Minnesota on three scoring drives Daniel Winnik Jersey , most notably a screen pass to Roc Thomas that beat the blitz for a 78-yard score .
Siemian was 11 of 17 for 165 yards, two TDs and an interception against his old team.
"It was a little weird for sure, but good to see old buddies," Siemian said.
Lynch, the former first-rounder twice beaten out by Siemian in Denver, was just 6 of 11 for 24 yards and an interception.
"Obviously I'm upset," he said.
Despite 17 yards passing overall in the first half, the Broncos only trailed 24-14 at halftime thanks to Isaiah McKenzie's 78-yard punt return for a TD and rookie Royce Freeman's 23-yard TD scamper 鈥?Denver's only first down before halftime.
Just when the crowd was starting to lament losing Siemian and Sloter, in came Kelly to fire up the crowd.
Kelly threw a 36-yard touchdown pass to tight end Matt LaCosse. Amid chants of "Kelly! Kelly!" he also drove Denver 85 yards in 11 plays, capping the drive with a 19-yard strike to running back Phillip Lindsay to put the Broncos on top 28-27 with 10 minutes remaining.
Sloter, who was cut by Denver a year ago, responded by throwing a 9-yard touchdown pass to Chad Beebe with six minutes left to put the Vikings back on top. His strike to Jeff Badet for the 2-point conversion made it 35-28.
Safety Jack Tocho picked off Kelly at the Denver 30-yard line with 5:23 left, and Sloter sealed it with a 14-yard bootleg for the score.
Sloter was 9 of 11 for 69 yards and Kelly was 14 of 20 for 176.
Lynch might be losing in his battle to be the backup, but he insisted he's "excited for Chad."
"Chad's been playing really well and he deserves that Womens Jordan Howard Jersey ," Lynch said. "He's a good kid."
Broncos coach Vance Joseph wasn't quite ready to elevate Kelly to No. 2 QB, saying he had to study the film.
"Obviously, Case is the starter, so that's my main concern," Joseph said. "Chad has played well. He played well tonight, outside of the one interception, which led to a score for those guys. He's a guy that plays with a lot of confidence. That's a good deal."
Joseph's faith in McKenzie finally paid off with his punt return for a score.
"Huge for him," said Joseph, who stuck with McKenzie last year despite a half-dozen fumbles. "He's obviously a talent. His issue last year wasn't talent. It was more decision-making. We're helping him fix that so he can help us win games."
Linebacker Brandon Marshall and wide receiver Demaryius Thomas weren't with their teammates on the sideline for the national anthem. They emerged from the tunnel behind the Broncos' bench after the anthem was over.
"We didn't know about that," Joseph said. "But it's their right."
Broncos S Jamal Carter (hamstring), CB Marcus Rios (hip) and TE Austin Traylor (right shoulder) got hurt.
Vikings: Host Jaguars on Aug. 18.
Broncos: Host Bears on Aug. 18.
CLEVELAND BROWNS (0-16)
OPEN CAMP: July 26, Berea, Ohio
LAST YEAR: Browns hit new low – and that’s saying something – by joining 2008 Detroit Lions in infamy as only teams to go winless in 16-game schedule. Nothing went right. Decision to start rookie quarterback DeShone Kizer backfired as he led NFL with 22 interceptions. Browns were better than their record but consistently found way to lose. Team suffered huge blow when perennial Pro Bowl offensive tackle Joe Thomas tore triceps in Week 7 and missed remainder of season. General manager Sashi Brown was fired in December.
IMPORTANT ADDITIONS: GM John Dorsey, offensive coordinator Todd Haley Authentic Ryan Kerrigan Jersey , QB Tyrod Taylor, WR Jarvis Landry, rookie QB Baker Mayfield, LB Mychal Kendricks, QB Drew Stanton, RB Carlos Hyde, DB Damarious Randall, rookie CB Denzel Ward, rookie RB Nick Chubb, rookie OL Austin Corbett.
IMPORTANT LOSSES: OT Joe Thomas, RB Isaiah Crowell, QB DeShone Kizer, DT Danny Shelton, CB James McCourty Nikita Zaitsev Jersey Kids , CB Jamar Taylor.
CAMP NEEDS: Coach Hue Jackson has spent offseason touting Taylor, who led Buffalo to playoffs last year, as Week 1 starter. But things could change if No. 1 overall pick Mayfield shows he’s ready. Plan is to bring him along slowly, but when have things ever gone as planned for Browns? Loss of Thomas leaves enormous hole that may take time to fill. RT Shon Coleman will get first crack, but there are other options, including Greg Robinson, former No. 2 overall pick by Rams who has been bust.
EXPECTATIONS: Owners Jimmy and Dee Haslam stuck with Jackson despite 1-31 record over two seasons. He’s lightened his load by turning offense over to Haley, who spent past six seasons running Pittsburgh’s high-powered attack. Taylor gives Browns seasoned, proven QB who could stabilize position, but Jackson will feel heat to play Mayfield. Browns will be under more national scrutiny as featured team for HBO’s ”Hard Knocks.” WR Josh Gordon has been on best behavior after years of suspensions. If he can stay clean and play alongside Landry, Browns could have one of league’s most potent passing games. DE Myles Garrett had solid rookie season, looking to have monster second year.
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