Trevor Siemian and Paxton Lynch are vying for the most-scrutinized job in Denver sports – quarterback of the Denver Broncos. In the controlled environment of training camp, both had some positives to take away from the first practice of the season.

The Broncos were only in shorts and helmets for the first practice, but the big focus was on their understanding of the offense installed by new offensive coordinator Mike McCoy.

Both Siemian and Lynch met with the media to recap the first practice and give updates on their progress heading into camp. Here’s a recap of what they had to say, courtesy of Broncos media relations.

Trevor Siemian

On the first practice of training camp

“It went well. I think guys just getting cleats on the grass, it was good. It’s a good starting point for us.”

 On the competition at quarterback

“I think we have great competition all across the board. This is our first day and guys staying up, you want to get in and out of the huddle and have good mechanics on the first day and I think we did that.” 

On picking up where he left off in OTAs and minicamp

“About two periods in probably (laughing). It took me a while but once you get going and knock the rust off it’s just good to be back.”

On Head Coach Vance Joseph comparing his personality with QB Paxton Lynch

“I don’t know, I guess that’s for Coach Joseph to say. Paxton’s a little taller than me (laughing). I’ll let Coach Joseph handle that one.” 

On the fast pace of today’s practice

“It was cool, Coach Joseph did something different which I had never done before and we got right into redzone today which I think was really smart to save guys legs. I think guys responded to it really well. That was a little further ahead in the installs which was good too so you get guys thinking at the same time. I think it was a really productive day.” 

On if he feels a difference between quarterback competition this season versus last season

“Not for me. I try to take it day by day and make the big things small. For me, it’s pretty easy. I just want to be better than I was yesterday. Hopefully the number 13 that rolls out of the locker room tomorrow is better than the ‘slappy’ that rolled out here today. That’s really all I’m trying to do and if I can make the big things small, which I’ve tried to do really since I got drafted, hopefully things will work out.”

On today’s red zone work compared to the rest of practice

“It’s fast. Things happen fast down there especially with our guys. There’s really tight throws which is interesting getting back. Usually you come back and you’re in the first install and you’re throwing to a bunch of green grass and kind of easing your way into it but down there it’s bang bang, especially with our guys. It’s good to get those reps, early on especially.”

On practicing in front of fans

“It’s incredible. We were throwing routes on air and you’d think we won the Super Bowl. It’s cool. It’s awesome to see our fans out there. It’s exciting for us to get back and it’s cool to see them kind of match our excitement getting back that first day. 

On RB Devontae Booker’s injury

“It stinks. I feel bad for him but he’s a tough guy mentally and physically so he’ll be back. I’m not worried about him but that stinks for sure.”

On being competitive with QB Paxton Lynch

“I think we’re both competitive. That’s not just Paxton, that’s across the board and you want that. At the same time, like I’ve said, I’m competing against myself, too. I’ve done some good things. There’s some things I want to work on so for me that’s really what I’m focused on day in and day out.” 

On adjusting to new players along the offensive line

“It’s just different seeing different faces in the huddle and getting everybody mixed in. It’s nice but me, Paxton, and [QB] Kyle [Sloter], we’re rolling in with just about everybody so you’re getting some kind of a sense of familiarity with everybody in that room. Certainly when you’re working different groups and guys are stepping in and out it just takes an adjustment. I think we’re doing just fine there.”

On chemistry inside the quarterback room

“I think we’ve got a really good room. [Quarterback Coach] Coach [Bill] Musgrave is leading the circus in there and he’s doing a good job. We’re really lucky to have him. We’ve got a great room and [Offensive Assistant/Quarterbacks’ Coach] Klint’s [Kubiak] in there helping us out. We’re not hiding information from one another. We’ve got a good thing going and we’re competing. We’re pushing each other. It’s a good deal for us.”

On if he feels any differences throwing to different receivers on the roster

“I think just because you have those live reps with those guys [WRs Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders] and those are the ones that matter when you’re playing the defense, especially our guys. When we’re getting into games everybody might be a step quicker or a step slower and those practice reps are pretty valuable. It’s just getting the hang of it and there’s no doubt I have more reps with those guys (Sanders and Thomas), but I’ve thrown with a bunch of guys here. I feel pretty comfortable with everybody we’ve got out there.” 

On feeling like he has enough time to practice without fear

“I just think it’d be tough to play with that kind of mentality. You can’t play quarterback with any fear or anything. That’d be a good way to embarrass yourself back there for sure.”

On being himself on the field

“I try to take it one play at a time and kind of let it rip. When I came into the league, I kind of had that mentality, too. I thought, shoot, I’m halfway out the door anyways so I don’t have much to lose. I think if you take it one play at a time and let it go but being smart at the same time. But for sure I’m just letting it rip.”

On his relationship with Lynch

“I think we have a great relationship. Like I said, Coach Musgrave does a good job leading our room and it’s good. It’s competitive no doubt but at the same time, we’re joking around in the locker room and hanging out. It’s just a good relationship”

On advantages of learning from Musgrave

“I think he’s just been around for so long and he’s coached so many different guys that he’s got such a great perspective on things and he’s played too. For me, it’s just being around another coach with a lot of experience and a lot of good experience. It’s just good getting different perspectives from different coaches and seeing what works for you. I think he does a good job of that and kind of figuring out the player and what they need. We’re lucky to have him.” 

On takeaways from practices without pads

“I like to think as a quarterback you can take away quite a bit but until you start getting hit it’s a little different. That’s why preseason games are good. You don’t want to get hit too much obviously but once you get thumping and things like that, it’s a little different pace for sure.”

Paxton Lynch

On whether he was nervous for the first training camp practice

“I wouldn’t say that it was nerves, but it was the first time that we all got back out here and working together. It was kind of exciting for all of us to be able to come out here in front of the fans who showed up today and brought great energy. I think it was just an acclimation period; getting out here for the first time, going out here full-speed and going against a national defense. I wouldn’t say it was it was nerves, I just think people were kind of excited to get out there.”

On why he cuts his sleeves off of his shirt

“I was always had them out at Memphis, the coach said, ‘Son, trees don’t grow in the shade, so you have to let them be out there. Let them grow a little bit. I’m trying to let my trees grow a little bit (laughing). I’ve just always cut the sleeves off of my shirt wearing them under my pads and what not. I’m trying to let them grow and get a nice tan because I know the season is long. In the winter, I can’t tan as much, so I have to get it on now.”

On his level of comfort compared to last year

“Honestly, it feels like night and day. I feel way more comfortable out there with those guys. I can kind of be myself a little bit more. Last year, I just felt like I was tip-toeing away trying to learn things and figure everything out at once instead of sitting back and getting a plan and sticking to it. But now, I think I’ve gotten a little bit more comfortable. I found a regime to stick to and a plan to stick to, and it’s worked pretty well. I feel like through OTAs and even through the first day, I’ve continuously gotten better every day.”

On the red zone drills they did at practice

“It was tough with those guys. Obviously, we got a good defense over there. When you get down there to the red zone, you’re going to have to take some chances with the ball and throw it into some tight areas. I think that [Head Coach Vance] Joseph did a good job of letting everybody get their feet underneath them and not having them run all over the field by keeping us down in the red zone.”

On RB Devontae Booker’s wrist injury

“I hadn’t heard a lot about it. I just know when we came out here to do our test yesterday, ‘Book’ wasn’t here. I talked to him a little bit in the locker room before we came out here, and I think it was his wrist that was hurt. He’s a good player. He’s going to work hard to get back. I don’t know the details on it. I know he’s a good player and we need him.”

On the quarterback competition

“It definitely feels like you’re getting closer to the season. Getting into training camp, you start making your roster cuts, and start actually playing preseason games. You get a chance to run around a little bit. You get a chance to see how you perform against actual defense. I think [QB] Trevor [Siemian] and I have competed the whole way. It’s always been a competition between us; pushing each other up until this point. I think that we just have to do it the same way. You just have to worry about yourself to make the team better. You worry about yourself and make yourself better, and the guys around you better. That’s how I’m viewing it.”

On the importance of having former quarterbacks as coaches

“It’s great honestly because they push you to be the best guy you can be. But they also get how you see things and the way you’re viewing things. They have a lot of great advice for you. If you were to mess something up, you have those guys who are a lot smarter and wiser than you, at least at this age, coaching and helping you through it. It makes it a lot easier, especially having a guy like [Quarterbacks] Coach [Bill] Musgrave who you’re around a lot. He’s sort of laid back and coaching you a little bit more instead of getting onto you and getting into you.”

On whether he visualizes himself taking the first snap against the Chargers during the regular season

“I visualize a lot of things having to do with my football career, but I’m just worried about right now and trying to make this team better and make myself better. Whatever happens on that Monday night, I’m ready for it. I visualize Monday Nights. I visualize Super Bowls. I visualize all that stuff, so you could say that’s a yes (laughing).”

On what it would mean to him to earn the starting spot 

“It would feel good, obviously. You compete against somebody and you get the chance to go out there and be a professional quarterback, starter, in the NFL. That’s what I think most of these guys dream of, not just being a quarterback, but being a starter in the league. When I was a little kid in the front yard throwing the football to myself, that’s what you envision. You vision yourself fourth down in the Super Bowl, and that’s what you want to do when you get that opportunity.”

On how RB C.J. Anderson has helped learn the new offense

“[RB] C.J. [Anderson] is basically another quarterback out there on the field. Like you said, he’s been in this offense before, so whenever you need help or to talk something through, C.J. is always there to help you. I know a lot of these guys are the same way. We all do a good job of communicating with each other, quarterback to quarterback, but also, quarterback to receivers, running backs and o-lineman, too.”

On whether he’s more comfortable in this year’s offense of last year’s offense

“I would say that I’m a lot more comfortable in this scheme, not just because of the scheme, but because I’ve had a year to get an NFL playbook and learn the plays. I’ve learned that when you get to the league, a lot of stuff is rollover with a lot of the same terminology. Having the ability to come out here and get in the shotgun is something I’m way more used to then getting under the center and doing that. I think that’s something that I’ve gotten a lot better at by taking reps at it.”

On what he thinks the timetable is for the quarterback competition

“I’m not sure. That’s ultimately up to the coaches. The coaches are paid to evaluate players and make the big time decisions on who plays and who doesn’t. Like I said, I’m just out here focusing on making these guys around me better and making myself better day in and day out.”

On the energy he brings to practice 

“I’ve just always been a guy who gets excited because he’s playing football every day. I know there are a lot of people who would want to be out here doing this day in and day out. I like to go out there and have fun and show people that I’m having fun and get guys around me to have fun. I’ve just always been taught to go celebrate with your teammates. Don’t be the guy in the end zone by yourself when all your teammates are trying to celebrate with you and you’re doing some crazy stuff. I just like celebrating with the guys around me because they helped me succeed.”