DENVER -- Since 1990 no NFL team has started 3-7 and reached the playoffs. As such the remainder of the Broncos season will be defined by pride and opportunity. The Broncos will start Paxton Lynch at quarterback this Sunday at Oakland, per multiple NFL sources.
Lynch has not played since injuring his throwing shoulder in the third preseason game against Green Bay. A projected month-long hiatus became a three-month recovery. However, Lynch has been deemed healthy after throwing progressively better over the past three weeks.
Coach Vance Joseph admitted Monday there was nothing preventing Lynch from starting, but wanted to first talk with new offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave. Joseph turned to Musgrave to create a more "efficient passing game." While starting on the road brings a challenge -- the Broncos are 0-4 in visiting parks this season -- Lynch will face a favorable defense. Opposing teams have completed nearly 73 percent of their passes against Oakland, and the Raiders have yet to intercept a pass.
And it's not like Brock Osweiler and Trevor Siemian set the bar high. The pair combined for eight interceptions, one fumble and two touchdowns on the road. Their poor play led, in part, to the firing of offensive coordinator Mike McCoy on Monday. Siemian will serve as Lynch's backup with Osweiler inactive.
With Lynch, the issue is clear. The Broncos need clarity at the position, and on Lynch specifically, as they plan for the offseason. Lynch went 1-1 as a starter last season and was beaten out by Siemian in training camp.
"I feel good," Lynch said of his shoulder on Monday. "We will see what happens."