SEPTEMBER 19: The Broncos have received good news on both fronts today after Jeudy and Surtain underwent tests on injuries suffered in yesterday’s win over the Texans. Both players are “considered day-to-day,” according to tweets from Ian Rapoport of NFL Network.
Jeudy left with a chest/sternum injury after a hard fall landing on the ball. Surtain’s ailment is a shoulder injury that he sustained in the second quarter of yesterday’s game. The news that both have a chance to return in time for a Sunday Night Football matchup with the 49ers, who are dealing with some serious injuries themselves, is much welcomed news for the Broncos after a slow start to the season.
SEPTEMBER 18: In a battle with the Texans today, Denver has seen two of its starters leave the game due to shoulder injuries. According to a tweet from the team’s Twitter account, neither wide receiver Jerry Jeudy nor cornerback Patrick Surtain II are expected to return today.
After missing seven games last year, Jeudy has been widely expected to have a breakout season with an upgrade at quarterback in Russell Wilson. The breakout year started strong with a 100-yard game to open the season last Monday in a loss to Wilson’s former team, the Seahawks. After only recording one reception today, though, Jeudy landed hard near the sideline and walked off the field showing indications of a shoulder injury.
The Broncos will be hoping that Jeudy’s absence is only short-term. Wilson can continue to rely on Courtland Sutton, but, with KJ Hamler already out dealing with knee and hip ailments and Tim Patrick on injured reserve, Denver can only field the likes of rookie fifth-round pick Montrell Washington, Tyrie Cleveland, and Kendall Hinton. Undrafted rookie receiver Jalen Virgil is also dealing with an injury after making the initial 53-man roster.
Surtain is coming off a strong rookie season that saw him start 15 games and nab four interceptions. In Year 2, Surtain is teaming up with Ronald Darby to lead a fairly top-heavy cornerbacks room. The Broncos unfortunately saw Surtain, too, leave the game today in the middle of the second quarter.
Denver will hope that it doesn’t have to deal with an extended absence from Surtain, either. With Surtain out and former-starter Michael Ojemudia on injured reserve, the Broncos have to utilize K’Waun Williams, rookie fourth-round pick Damarri Mathis, and reserves Darius Phillips and Essang Bassey. Williams served as a spot-starter during his recent tenure in San Francisco, but the other three corners lack significant starting experience in the NFL.
The Broncos can’t afford hits of this magnitude as they attempt to keep up with the Raiders, Chargers, and Chiefs in the AFC West. They will hope to get Jeudy and Surtain back in time to face the 49ers next week for Sunday Night Football.