For most NFL quarterbacks, a demotion would be a significant blow to the ego. But Trevor Siemian seems just fine with his trade from the Denver Broncos to the Minnesota Vikings. The Broncos moved on to sign Case Keenum to be their new starting quarterback, and Siemian will settle in as the backup to Kirk Cousins.
Even if he will not play if things go according to plan, Siemian knows he's in a good spot.
“There’s a lot of places you could go,” Siemian said, via Andrew Krammer of the Minneapolis Star Tribune. “For me to be here in an organization who’s knocking on the door of some really great things, I think there’s a lot of people that would kill to be in this spot.”
The Vikings realized the value of having a solid backup quarterback last season. Sam Bradford had the best game of his career in Week 1, but he came out of the game with a knee issue and Keenum had to step in as Teddy Bridgewater continued to work his way back from a major knee injury. A trip to the NFC Championship Game came, and set high expectations for the team next season with Cousins now in the fold.
Vikings general manager Rick Spielman compared the acquisition of Siemian to the signing of Keenum last offseason.
“To have a quality backup that if, knock on wood, if he had to step in,” Spielman said, “we feel very confident he could come in and play for us and keep us in the right direction.”
Siemian made 24 starts for the Broncos over the last two seasons, completing over 59 percent of his passes with 30 touchdowns and 24 interceptions in 25 total games. He struggled last year, but he played at an acceptable level in 2016 (18 touchdowns, 10 interceptions in 14 games.
Two straight offseason surgeries on his left (non-throwing) shoulder is cause for some concern. But Siemian suggested his shoulder “feels good” at this point and he should easily be ready to go for training camp.
Siemian was a seventh-round pick out of Northwestern in 2015, then promptly beat out 2016 first-round pick Paxton Lynch for the starting job in Denver during two straight preseasons. Even as a fringe NFL starter, at best, Siemian will not struggle to find employment in the league. With the Vikings, he can take his rightful place as a serviceable backup who can keep things afloat if called upon.