Ascending Denver Broncos defender suffers potential season-ending injury before OTAs

Denver Broncos news, Drew Sanders
Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

The Denver Broncos will be relying on a lot more young players on rookie-scale contracts for the upcoming 2024 NFL season as they deal with the dead cap hit left by releasing Russell Wilson. Unfortunately for Denver, one of those players already suffered a career-ending injury.

In preparation for organized team activities and training camp, many NFL players ramp up their training in March and April to be ready for when they report back to practice. It was during that time that one of Denver’s key defensive players suffered what could be a season-ending injury.

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According to Mike Klis of 9News in Denver, Broncos off-ball linebacker Drew Sanders suffered a torn Achilles during his offseason training.

As Klis reports, Sanders had reported to Denver in mid-April to participate in the team’s offseason program. There was excitement for the second-year linebacker in Denver, with expectations that a strong offseason would lead to a breakout 2024 season.

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Instead, Sanders suffered a torn Achilles and underwent surgery around the time of the NFL Draft. As a result, the talented off-ball linebacker will miss the majority of the 2024 NFL season.

Sanders, the 67th overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft, was a first-team Al-American with the Arkansas Razorbacks before making his way to the NFL. At the 2023 NFL Combine, the 6-foot-4 linebacker ran a 4.66 40-yard dash, displaying athleticism that made him enticing to NFL teams.

  • Drew Sanders stats (2023): 13 solo tackles, 1 tackle for loss, 1 fumble recovery

The Broncos’ linebacker appeared in all 17 games last season, making 4 starts. He played on 23 percent of the Broncos’ defensive snaps and was one of their regular contributors on special teams, playing 297 snaps as a rookie. While the timing of the injury gives Sanders a chance to return in December, whether or not that happens may depend on how he looks returning from the injury and what the Broncos’ record is.

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