The Broncos’ thoroughly underwhelming passing offense will be shorthanded to close out the season. Tight end Greg Dulcich has been placed on IR, per a team announcement.
The move officially ends his rookie campaign, one which was cut short by a lingering hamstring issue. The injury required an IR stint to begin the campaign, and delayed his NFL debut until Week 6; he re-aggravated it during the team’s disastrous Christmas Day loss to the Rams, which marked the final straw for head coach Nathaniel Hackett‘s tenure. In the 10 contests he played this year, the UCLA product had established himself as Denver’s top option at the position, logging a 75% snap share.
Dulcich quickly became one of Russell Wilson‘s preferred pass-catching options, receiving eight or more targets on four occasions this season. The third-rounder will end the year with a total of 33 receptions, 411 yards and a pair of touchdowns. Considering the fact that that total comes with seven missed games and within the league’s lowest-scoring offense, there will be plenty of optimism surrounding Dulcich moving forward.
His selection in this year’s draft came, of course, after 2019 first-rounder Noah Fant was included in the package Denver sent Seattle for Wilson. The latter move led to expectations for Albert Okwuegbunam to take on a more prominent pass-catching role. However, the 24-year-old has made only six appearances (and no starts) in 2022, and recorded just seven scoreless catches. That does not bode well for his prospects in 2023, the final year of his rookie contract.
Dulcich was one of only two Broncos players to record multiple touchdown catches during this lost season. The other – wideout Jerry Jeudy – is listed as questionable for Sunday’s game against the Chiefs. The latter is expected to be available, though, interim HC Jerry Rosburg said. With Dulcich sidelined, Denver will turn to Okwuegbunam and the likes of Eric Saubert, Eric Tomlinson and Andrew Beck at the tight end position for the next two weeks.