LEE’S SUMMIT, MO (KCTV) – Chiefs fans aren't kind to visiting rivals, but they might have a reason to cheer for one Broncos player when they host Denver in a couple of weeks.
Lee's Summit native Drew Lock started for the team Sunday night in Denver’s 23-20 win over the Los Angeles Chargers.
Lock's former coaches and mentors were rooting him on as the rookie quarterback did pretty well in his debut. People in Lee’s Summit were excited for lock and said they see him playing with the same kind of energy he once brought to the field at LSHS.
To be playing at the level of the NFL is something few athletes can ever dream of, and Lock's hometown wants to share in that dream.
Head coach Eric Thomas saw a highlight reel of plays from Lock, who threw for 80 touchdowns in three years starting for Thomas.
“It's fun to go back through these every once in a while, because you can see the kid playing in the NFL right now,” he said. “It's crazy, because he's just Drew to us.”
Sunday night it wasn't just any regular game, though. While Lock made his debut as a starter for the struggling Broncos, Thomas was at a fall football banquet, where he kept up with the game on his phone.
“When he threw his first touchdown I was like ‘Yes!’ and everyone was like, ‘What?’” the coach said.
Lock threw two touchdowns Sunday night, and he's already been named the starter for the Broncos next game in Texas. The rookie’s energy seemed contagious, with his parents dancing in the stands as he led Denver to a last second win over L.A.
Shawnee Mission East head coach Justin Hoover is a quarterback specialist and worked with Lock one-on-one while he played for the Mizzou Tigers. Hoover said he was excited to see the performance by Lock, and noted that he, like many others, is looking forward to the chance to see Lock make a bit of a homecoming when the Broncos face the Chiefs in two weeks at Arrowhead.
“He came out as his true self last night, that's what allowed him to have success,” Hoover explained. ”He'll be professional about it. He'll be excited to come home to play but he knows he has a job to do.”
The Broncos are out of the playoff picture for the year, which gives Lock a few games to show Denver the athlete his coaches remember. And while both coaches are normally members of Chief’s Kingdom, it'd be hard not to cheer for the hometown kid.
“You can be both,” Hoover explained. “You don't have to be a Broncos fan, but you can still be a fan of Drew Lock.”