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Saubert takes Driskel’s roster spot in Denver

Drake graduate signs with 4th team in 5 years

AP FILE PHOTO - Atlanta Falcons tight end Eric Saubert makes a catch during warmups before taking on the Carolina Panthers in an NFL game Nov. 5, 2017, in Charlotte, N.C.

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — The Denver Broncos released quarterback Jeff Driskel on Monday when they signed veteran tight end Eric Saubert.

Driskel began last season as Drew Lock’s backup and played well in relief during a Week 2 loss at Pittsburgh.

He lost his one start the following week, 28-10 to Tampa Bay, and was leapfrogged by Brett Rypien for the No. 2 job the rest of the season.

Driskel was at the center of a quarterback quagmire last November when he tested positive for the coronavirus after the team’s four quarterbacks had spent a day off together maskless.

Lock, Rypien and Blake Bortles were disqualified that weekend and the Broncos had to start a rookie practice squad receiver Kendall Hinton in a game against New Orleans with zero practice squad reps.

Hinton completed a single pass and Denver lost 31-3, the low point of a 5-11 season that stretched the Broncos’ playoff drought to a half decade.

Driskel completed 35 of 64 passes (54.7 percent) for 432 yards with three touchdowns and two interceptions in his one season in Denver.

The Broncos acquired veteran QB Teddy Bridgewater from the Carolina Panthers last week and general manager George Paton bypassed quarterbacks in the draft.

Paton said Bridgewater and Lock will compete for the starting job this summer. There is also speculation the Broncos will try to pry disgruntled MVP Aaron Rodgers out of Green Bay.

Another position Paton didn’t address in the draft was tight end. Enter Saubert, a well-traveled, fifth-year player who has appeared in 40 games during his four seasons in Atlanta (2017-18), Chicago (2019) and Jacksonville (2020). He was a fifth-round draft pick out of Drake University in 2017.

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