John Elway admits his mistake, cuts former first-round QB Paxton Lynch

The Denver Broncos are officially done with quarterback Paxton Lynch. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)
The Denver Broncos are officially done with quarterback Paxton Lynch. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)

The Broncos parted ways with former first-round pick Paxton Lynch on Sunday, cutting the one-time starting quarterback and heir apparent to Peyton Manning’s Super Bowl 50 offense as they trim their roster to 53 players. The team also picked up quarterback Kevin Hogan off waivers from Washington.

It’s quite the fall for Lynch, and an even bigger gaffe for general manager John Elway, who traded a third-round pick and swapped firsts with Seattle to move up five spots and select Lynch out of Memphis with the 26th overall pick in 2016.

Lynch was supposed to lead the Broncos back to the playoffs. Instead he ends his Denver career with just five games under his belt, a 61.7 completion percentage, 847 total yards, four touchdowns, four interceptions and four fumbles.

Broncos give up on Lynch

For a long time the Broncos sounded like they were trying to talk themselves into Lynch still taking over at quarterback despite numerous mistakes in a short window.

As of last March, head coach Vance Joseph brought up the fact that Lynch was seen as a long-term project with plenty of potential.

“It takes time to [be a] good quarterback in this league,” Joseph told ESPN. “I think once Paxton gets more time he’s going to get better as a quarterback. By no means is Paxton Lynch done. By no means at all.”

Except that now Lynch is done. At least in Denver. There may be other teams out there who want to give him a shot, but it’s hard to see him jumping anyone on a depth chart — assuming he’s claimed.

As for the Broncos, quarterback Case Keenum comes in to try to return the offense to form. Since winning Super Bowl 50, Denver ranked 21st in passing during the 2016 season and was just 20th last year.

Elway and Joseph both talked to Lynch

The GM and coach took on the task of cutting their former top pick together.

Since joining Denver’s front office in 2011, Elway’s track record of drafting quarterbacks is less than stellar, to put it mildly, as is the Broncos total haul over the last decade or so.

Lynch’s future is uncertain. Denver’s is solidified. With Keenum, wideouts Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders along with running backs Devontae Booker and Royce Freeman, an offense that retooled on the fly has enough firepower to make some noise in a crowded AFC West.

– – – – – –

Blake Schuster is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter!

More from Yahoo Sports:
Nick Saban chews out reporter for asking valid QB question
Pat Forde: Michigan’s opening dud feels like beginning of the end for Harbaugh
Phillies pitcher has cheat sheet confiscated by ump
Ravens rookie hospitalized with ‘head wounds’