Brock Osweiler starts under center for the Broncos on Sunday in Philadelphia. His first start of the season begins a trial period for the quarterback, who returned to Denver after a one-year, highly paid sabbatical.
NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported on NFL GameDay Morning that Osweiler is playing to keep the job away from Paxton Lynch, who has sat out since suffering a shoulder injury in the third game of the preseason.
"Former first-round pick Paxton Lynch is rapidly improving," Rapoport said. "His shoulder injury sounds like it's about two weeks away. Do not be surprised if Osweiler falters [that] Lynch ends up getting the job, maybe for the rest of the season."
Coach Vance Joseph turned to Osweiler after Trevor Siemian struggled with turnovers behind a porous offensive line. It's likely the Broncos would have given Lynch the first shot had he been healthy. Barring Brock morphing into 2013 Peyton Manning, Lynch should get his chance at the starting gig once the team is confident his shoulder is healthy enough. The second-year pro looked lost at times in his brief outings as a rookie but provides athleticism Osweiler can't touch -- a big benefit behind the Broncos' o-line.
A statuesque Osweiler behind a leaky Broncos offensive line, facing a penetrating Eagles defensive front appears to be a recipe for disaster. If Brock surprises, however, he'll hang onto the starting job at least another week.