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Denver Broncos quarterback battle remains wide open

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Expect the Denver Broncos' quarterback competition to continue into the third preseason game without a clear frontrunner.

In his debut as a preseason starter Saturday night, Trevor Siemian marred an otherwise solid performance with a pick-six when he failed to account for San Francisco 49ers safety Eric Reid on a telegraphed slant pass to Demaryius Thomas.

Siemian checked all of the boxes on the opening touchdown drive, showing poise, ball placement and athleticism while completing five of six passes for 55 yards.

His performance was a mixed bag thereafter. In addition to the interception, he showed a reluctance to pull the trigger on downfield throws with Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders in one-on-one coverage.

Granted an opportunity to seize the upper hand in the second quarter, veteran Mark Sanchez completed 9 of his first 10 pass attempts with a series of impressive throws before careless turnovers came back to haunt him.

After getting away with a near-interception earlier in the possession, Sanchez lost a fumble deep in 49ers territory. When the Broncos' defense forced a fumble of its own one play later, Sanchez was right back in the red zone. On the heels of two incompletions, he lost another fumble when he was hit at the top of his windup.

Afforded another series coming out of halftime, Sanchez appeared to be rattled by the second-quarter turnovers, missing on three passes before giving way to rookie Paxton Lynch.

Although Lynch flashed underrated athleticism and a rocket arm, three of his first four possessions resulted in punts.

Interviewed by Denver sideline reporter Rod Mackey in the third quarter, Sanders offered, "As far as the quarterback, I think it's still wide open."

Coach Gary Kubiak is no stranger to the old football axiom, "if you have two quarterbacks, you actually have none." Entering the regular-season dress rehearsal next week, Kubiak has three quarterbacks from which to choose.

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