The Broncos have become the latest NFL team to use their injured reserve slot with the designation to return, placing linebacker Danny Trevathan on IR-DTR today, according to Field Yates of ESPN.com (via Twitter). The move means Trevathan will be eligible to resume practicing in six weeks, and can return to game action in December, eight weeks from now.
Trevathan, 24, left this weekend’s game against the Jets with a knee injury, and was later diagnosed with a fracture above his left kneecap. While the original timetable for his recovery was about three to six weeks, it makes sense for Denver to play it safe with one of its key run defenders, allowing him plenty of time to get back to 100%.
Nate Irving sees most of the defensive snaps at middle linebacker for the Broncos, so he’ll continue to play that regular role. In Trevathan’s absence, someone like Steven Johnson, Corey Nelson, or Lamin Barrow could slide into that backup job to periodically spell Irving, but we’ll have to wait and see how the Broncos adjust.
Denver had been one of just eight teams that had yet to use its IR-DTR spot. Since the designation sidelines a player for eight games, we’re nearing the point where it will no longer be useful, so if those remaining teams are going to use it, it will likely happen soon. You can keep tabs on how the IR-DTR slots have been deployed so far, via our tracker.