SANTA CLARA, Calif. — The Broncos returned to Levi’s Stadium on Saturday night for the first time since winning Super Bowl 50.
This time there was slightly less on the line with it being the Broncos second preseason game but it was still a victory as the Broncos beat the San Francisco 49ers 33-14.
Most of the starting Broncos defense, including Von Miller, did not play in the game. Inside linebackers Brandon Marshall and Todd Davis, lineman Derek Wolfe and Jared Crick, outside linebacker Shane Ray and safety T.J. Ward also sat out the game.
But that didn’t matter as the Broncos defense forced four turnovers in first half alone.
However, all the focus was once again on the quarterbacks Trevor Siemian and Paxton Lynch as they continue to compete for the starting job. This time it was Lynch’s turn to start – but Siemian seemed to steal the show.
On the first turnover near the red zone, the Lynch threw the ball to Bennie Fowler in the end zone which got a pass interference call leading to a 1st and Goal. After three attempts, C.J. Anderson got the touchdown for the 7-0 lead.
Late in the first quarter, 49ers quarterback Brian Hoyer fumbled the ball and it was recovered by Shelby Harris. The turnover lead to 45 yard field goal from Brandon McManus to give the Broncos the 10-0 lead.
Chris Lewis-Harris intercepted the ball giving the Broncos defense their third turnover of the night. After Lynch was sacked on third down, the Broncos settled for a 51 yard field goal from McManus to extend the lead 13-0.
The Broncos defense came up big with another turnover with Adam Gotsis forcing a fumble for Will Parks to recover.
Siemian replaced Lynch for the final drive of the second quarter and would hit De’Angelo Henderson for a touchdown that was called back thanks to a holding call on Garett Bolles.
But it didn’t matter, Siemian found Jordan “Sunshine” Taylor for a touchdown on the next play extending Denver’s lead 20-0 at halftime.
Lynch finished the night 9 of 13 passing for 39 yards.
The 49ers offense finally scored their first points of the night with a touchdown drive on the first possession of the second half making it 20-7.
Siemian played until the end of the third quarter when he was replaced by Kyle Sloter. Siemian finished 8 of 11 for 93 yards and a touchdown.
Two more field goals from McManus and another turnover recovered by Shelby Harris in the fourth quarter helped the Broncos score another touchdown. This time it was 21-yard run from Juwan Thompson to make 33-7.
After the Denver touchdown, Victor Bolden Jr. kept the game interesting returning the kick-off 104 yards for a touchdown making it 33-14.
In the end, the turnovers helped lead the Broncos to a 33-14 victory.
The Broncos traveled to Santa Clara to hold joint practices with the 49ers this week.
The two teams also have several connections including Broncos Ring of Famer John Lynch, who was hired as general manager for the 49ers in January, and new head coach Kyle Shanahan, who is the son of legendary Broncos coach Mike Shanahan.
Even the captains for the 49ers were made up of former Broncos players including Elvis Dumervil, Zane Beadles, Kapri Bibbs and Dekoda Watson.
The Broncos will return to Denver to play their first game of the season at Mile High against the Green Bay Packers on Aug. 26.