ENGLEWOOD, Colo. --When the Broncos selected quarterback Zac Dysert in the seventh round of the 2013 NFL Draft back in April, the rookie's eventual place on the team was anything but guaranteed.
But fast forward four months and Dysert is now an official member of the Broncos' 53-man roster – displaying a combination of potential and on-field performance that caught the attention of the front office and coaching staff.
Dysert's trajectory from late-round selection to becoming the third quarterback on the Broncos' roster was put quite simply by Head Coach John Fox on Saturday.
"He earned it," Fox said.
The rookie out of Miami University showcased his playmaking abilities and leadership in the Broncos' preseason finale against the Cardinals last Thursday. Dysert completed 9-of-20 passes for 163 yards and a touchdown in the second half of the Broncos' 32-24 loss, his most extensive playing time of the preseason.
Dysert added 23 yards rushing, and his offensive outburst against the Cardinals was coupled with an earlier showing against San Francisco in the preseason opener – where Dysert completed 3-of-3 passes and led the Broncos to a second-half field goal in a 10-6 victory.
And while he wasn't sure whether his performance against the Cardinals solidified his roster spot, Dysert was more definitive in enthusiasm about making the team.
"I don't really know why they did it but I'm glad to be here," Dysert said. "(I'm) obviously very excited. I just want to do whatever I can to make the team better."
Executive Vice President of Football Operations John Elway said that Dysert's upside and continued level of performance over the past four months were determining factors in the decision to keep him on the roster.
"We think he has a lot of upside. He proved himself during OTAs and training camp and he's a young guy that we think has tremendous upside," Elway said. "We just felt that it was in our best interest that we protect him and keep three quarterbacks and be able to develop him."
Now he's looking forward to contributing in whatever capacity that is asked of him.
"I'm very excited. It'll make me better no matter what just getting the reps out there," Dysert said. "Whatever role that they want me to do, I'm going do to the best of my ability. Whatever the team needs me to do to make them better."