ENGLEWOOD | Unless the Denver Broncos can regain control of a season skidding out of control, Paxton Lynch could get the starting quarterback job he’s never been able to earn outright. Ideally, the Broncos (3-6) would like to head into their offseason knowing if Lynch is a bust or a late-bloomer, although it’s unlikely they’d put the former first-round draft pick out of Memphis into the lineup unless they’re erased from the playoff picture.

DENVER | Gabriel Landeskog scored three goals — one on a penalty shot — for his first career hat trick, Nathan MacKinnon had a goal and four assists and the Colorado Avalanche made it a successful return from Sweden with a 6-2 win over the Washington Capitals on Thursday night. Mikko Rantanen added a goal and three assists, Colin Wilson also scored and Semyon Varlamov had 28 saves for the Avalanche.

ENGLEWOOD | The slumping Denver Broncos have a new punt returner and a new backup outside linebacker. They might be getting a fresh face at quarterback soon, too. Vance Joseph, whose team is mired in a five-game slump in which the Broncos (3-6) have been outscored by a whopping 97 points, promoted wide receiver Jordan Taylor ahead of rookie Isaiah McKenzie, whose fifth fumble Sunday night ignited the New England Patriots’ 41-16 rout of their rival.