But when he put pen to paper this week to formally sign his first NFL contract, Lynch said he finally feels like he can get started constructing whatever becomes of his NFL career on and off the field.
“I’m glad to have it done, official,’’ Lynch said. “It's a relief and it's kind of the official starting. Now I can sit down with [agent] Leigh [Steinberg] and really think about what I can do with this. I’d like to do some things for my church, my high school back home, Memphis and then begin some things here.’’
Steinberg said Lynch wanted to begin his off-the-field work, even as the rookie just completed the Broncos’ rookie minicamp this week.
Lynch’s deal is for four years, $9.476 million, with a $5.091 million signing bonus. The first three years of the deal are guaranteed and as the Broncos used the final dollars in their rookie salary pool to sign him, the team also guaranteed $600,000 in the fourth year of the contract, a rarity among rookie contracts.
The Broncos also have, because Lynch was a first-round pick (26th overall), a fifth-year option that they must decide whether to exercise after the third year of the deal.
“It just feels good to know what I have, to be able to do some of the things I’d like to do,’’ Lynch said. “It’s all part of being the kind of NFL player I’d like to be.’’
Lynch said he had not had any time to look for a place to live before last weekend when “my mom came out to give me some help with that, so I can get that going now, too.’’
On the field Lynch worked as the No. 3 quarterback in this past week’s mandatory minicamp. And he faces a fairly steep learning curve in the transition from Memphis’ spread offense, in which he nearly always worked out of the shotgun and the team worked without a huddle, to the Broncos’ scheme.
But there is no question the Broncos selected Lynch with the idea he would eventually project to be the starter. At the moment Mark Sanchez is in line to be the Broncos’ starter, with Trevor Siemian trying to close the gap. The Broncos will almost certainly carry three quarterbacks this season.
As the Broncos closed out their minicamp this past week, coach Gary Kubiak praised Lynch’s potential while also offering a no-nonsense assessment of where things are.
“It’s been up and down,’’ Kubiak said of Lynch’s practice performance. “Paxton is so talented, that’s an easy thing to see, how gifted he is throwing the ball and stuff. And then sometimes he’ll get real slow, and that’s when you’re thinking too much. It’s up to us as coaches to lock on what he really understands and what he’s doing to cut him loose. In my mind right now if we were in Chicago for [the first] preseason game, I know what he knows so we can go do. We have got to have growth upon that as we move forward and he’s got to continue to grind at what he’s doing. [There are] a lot of expectations."
“I just want to make the most of every day I can,’’ Lynch said. “I want to be the best player I can be, help this team, help this community and be a part of our success.’’