DENVER -- Trevor Siemian's dry wit becomes lost in his arid press conferences.
In truth, he is bright and funny. In an interview with 104.3 The Fan on Radio Row at Super Bowl 51, Siemian delivered candid answers about his first year as starter, his health and the buzz of Tony Romo possibly landing in Denver.
"I am not as dumb as I look," Siemian deadpanned to hosts Mike Evans and Mark Schlereth. "(The talk of Romo and Paxton Lynch) doesn't bother me. That's the deal I am in. I was a seventh-round pick. I am going to have to fight, scratch and claw my whole career. I am fine with that. Truthfully, I wouldn't have it any other way."
Siemian showed promise last season, throwing 18 touchdowns with 10 interceptions in 14 games. However, the offense was "brutal in the red zone," he conceded, and he knows he must improve. He admitted his left shoulder, hurt when he was tackled against Tampa Bay in the fourth week, didn't feel normal until Week 13. He underwent elective surgery after the season. He has three more weeks in a sling, followed by two months of rehab that should leave him in position to be fully cleared for OTAs
He offered no excuses, saying it proved a valuable lesson.
"It's part of it. I learned not just about playing hurt, but playing well hurt," Siemian said.
His status became less certain following the season. Kubiak shocked players when he stepped down. It's no secret Kubiak appreciated Siemian's intelligence and ability to translate game plans and lead in the locker room. Siemian said he will remain in touch with his former coach, but scoffed at the idea that he would no longer have a chance to start with Kubiak gone.
"I obviously owe a lot to Kube. I had no business getting drafted and he got me in the door," said Siemian, who was in Houston as a pitchman for Skittles. "But you have to be to play (in the NFL). There's no guys in his corner. It's that you have to be able to play."
What about the chatter that general manager John Elway prefers Lynch because he drafted him?
"John drafted me, too. Maybe a little lower," Siemian said.
A former Northwestern stalwart, Siemian looked back on last season with a blend of emotions. He lamented "10-to-15" plays where he failed to deliver. But was proud of earning the job and "absolutely believes" he can be a starting NFL quarterback.
"Getting the locker room's trust (was the biggest accomplishment) because I hadn't played, right? It's tough to lead if you haven't played. Earning those guys' trust was special," Siemian said.
Siemian has talked with new coach Vance Joseph, offensive coordinator Mike McCoy and quarterbacks coach Bill Musgrave. He will be in Denver soon, preparing to begin work for the upcoming season.
"I think I can play. I sure as heck hope I am not as good as I am going to be. I have a lot of confidence in myself. I want to keep getting better," Siemian said. "I don’t think I have hit a ceiling, and I want to see how far I can take this thing."