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Denver Broncos quarterback Brett Rypien (4) eyes the field as he prepares to throw the ball during the third and final preseason game of the year against the Minnesota Vikings at Empower Field at Mile High in Denver on Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022. (Parker Seibold / The Gazette)

Good news is, Brett Rypien owns the Jets.

New York has never beaten the Broncos starting quarterback.

Wait! There’s more positivity now that it’s officially official Russell Wilson won’t play Sunday against the Jets at Empower Field at Mile High. In Rypien’s first (and only) NFL start, Wilson, who was still in Seattle, took notice of Rypien’s passing ability: “Rypien makin’ plays!” Russ tweeted at 8:36 pm on Oct. 1, 2020.

Rypien and the Broncos beat the Jets 37-28 in a Thursday night game. He’s 1-0 vs. the Jets.

B-R-E-T-(T). Brett, Brett, Brett.

Sunday, instead of tweeting, Russ can walk over and congratulate the quarterback in person.

That’s the hope, anyway.

Who knows if Rypien is good enough to stay undefeated as a starting quarterback in the NFL? But he won’t be underprepared. The 26-year-old from Spokane, the jewel of the inland empire and home to the mighty Gonzaga Bulldogs, is a smart dude and film-study fanatic. He is not, however, much of a talker. Twice during his rookie season, Rypien politely declined my interview request. No sweat, Brett.

As a high school star at Shadle Park in the Greater Spokane League, Rypien set the Washington state single-game passing record (613 yards) and the single-season passing record (4,552 yards). His coach let Brett cook.

That’s almost three miles of yards. One Mile High hopes and prays Rypien can throw an upset. The breaking news that Rypien will be the Sunday starter, not Wilson, flipped the Broncos from 1-point favorites to 1-point underdogs.

A halftime ceremony will honor the Super Bowl-champ 1997 Broncos, including Mike Shanahan.

Please, Broncos. Don’t disappoint Dad.

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Back to Brett. You can call him Brett, or “Ryp.” Vic Fangio called him "Rip-ee-in." For the record, it’s just “Rippin’.” The "e" is silent, like Brett.

The man, the myth, the Spokane legend made his name at Boise State, where he subbed in for quarterback Ryan Finley in the third game of Rypien’s freshman season. He never lost the job. Watch out, Russ.

“Ryp” finished his college career as the Mountain West’s all-time leader in passing yards (13,581), completions (1,036) and 300-yard games (21). He went 2-2 vs. Air Force. Falcons coach Troy Calhoun was and remains a big fan of Brett’s, once calling him “an absolute superstar.”

The CSU Rams were not big fans of Brett’s. Rypien lit them up for 10 touchdowns against two interceptions. He went 4-0 against CSU.

Fort Collins will be rooting for Rypien on Sunday.

We’ll probably never know the truth about the Broncos’ decision to sit Russ and play Brett. An ESPN report suggested Wilson “wanted to play despite a hamstring injury” and Nathaniel Hackett made the executive decision to play it safe to “prevent a lingering injury.” Either way, it was the right call by the Broncos. There’s a bad (in a good way) man on the Jets defense, and 305-pound Quinnen Williams could have done some lingering damage to Wilson’s injuries.

Williams is the best defensive player to line up against the Broncos so far this season.

In Rypien’s first career start, two years ago this month, he got a helping hand from eager teammates Tim Patrick (113 receiving yards) and Melvin Gordon (107 rushing yards). Patrick is on the injured list and unavailable to help. Gordon whined over his role yet still will start.

Shanahan never would have allowed the latter.

Rypien completed 19 of 31 passes for 242 yards and two touchdowns. He also threw three picks. His Broncos beat the Jets in a rout. Now he’s back to let 'er Ryp, again against the Jets.

B-R-E-T-(T). Brett, Brett, Brett.

Contact Gazette sports columnist Paul Klee at paul.klee@gazette.com or on Twitter at @bypaulklee.

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