Denver Broncos quarterback Drew Lock tied for the league-lead in interceptions and missed three games due to injuries in 2020. File Photo by Matthew Healey/UPI | License Photo
Aug. 11 (UPI) -- Denver Broncos coach Vic Fangio said the quarterback battle between Drew Lock and Teddy Bridgewater is "even," as the team heads into its first preseason game Saturday in Minneapolis.
Fangio spoke about the competition to determine the Broncos' starter for 2021 at a news conference Tuesday at training camp in Englewood, Colo.
He said Lock will start Saturday against the Minnesota Vikings. Bridgewater will get the start in the Broncos' second preseason game.
"Obviously I think the games, these practices we have coming up, we had a really good practice the other day where it was upscale a little bit, they all factor in," Fangio told reporters.
"There is no grading scale. Ultimately we have to go by what we see. We're keeping track of things, statistically, some more detailed stats than what [reporters] will do. They'll be there for the information."
Lock and Bridgewater were listed as co-starters on the Broncos' first unofficial depth chart, released Tuesday. Brett Rypien was listed as third string.
Lock joined the Broncos as a second-round pick in the 2019 NFL Draft. He completed 57.3% of his throws for 2,933 yards, 16 touchdowns and tied for the league-high with 15 interceptions in 13 games in 2020, his first season as a full-time starter.
He missed three games due to injury.
The Broncos acquired Bridgewater in April through a trade with the Carolina Panthers. The 2015 Pro Bowl selection completed a career-high 69.1% of his throws for 3,733 yards, 15 scores and 11 interceptions in 15 starts last season.
Broncos general manager George Patton said in April that the team acquired Bridgewater to add "competition, experience and a strong veteran presence" to the quarterbacks room.
Bridgewater owns a career completion percentage of 66.5% with 53 touchdowns and 36 interceptions in 59 appearances over six seasons. He missed the entire 2016 season and 15 games in 2017 due to injury.
Bridgewater, 28, will play on a one-year contract. Lock, 24, is in the third-year of his four-year rookie pact with the Broncos.
The Broncos face the Vikings at 4 p.m. EDT Saturday in Minneapolis. They start the regular season against the New York Giants at 4:25 p.m. EDT Sept. 12 at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J.