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Broncos' Callahan to be shut down 4-6 more weeks

The Denver Broncos cornerback had non-surgical procedure Wednesday on troublesome left foot.
Credit: AP Photo/David Zalubowski
Denver Broncos cornerback Bryce Callahan (29) takes part in drills during the opening day of the team's NFL football training camp Thursday, July 18, 2019, in Englewood, Colo. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — Bryce Callahan underwent a non-surgical procedure Wednesday on his troublesome left foot that will shut down the Broncos’ cornerback for at least four to six more weeks.

Broncos coach Vic Fangio confirmed 9News report on Callahan following the team's walkthrough Wednesday.

"He's still having complications from the injury he had last year and the surgery he had after the injury,'' Fangio said. 

While completely shutting down Callahan for at least another month is tough news for a Broncos’ team that can use all the cornerback help it can get, perhaps the procedure can finally bring the solution.

Callahan had been practicing on a limited basis in recent weeks in hopes he could play, but all methods failed to get him in uniform.

He missed the final three games of the regular season, plus a playoff game, for Fangio’s Chicago Bears’ defense with a broken foot last year. Yet, Fangio and the Broncos were optimistic the cornerback could recover for 2019.

After undergoing surgery to repair a broken bone in his left foot last December, Callahan signed a three-year, $21 million deal with the Broncos in March. He will collect $6.5 million this year and there is an injury guarantee for another $6.5 million in 2020.

Credit: AP Photo/David Zalubowski
Bryce Callahan takes part in drills during an NFL football organized training activity session at the team's headquarters Monday, May 13, 2019.

His recovery from foot surgery seemed to be becoming along nicely until he was stepped on during the Broncos’ stadium practice on July 27. Since then, Callahan has missed all five preseason games and the first three regular-season games. And now he will miss at least the next four games.

Not placing Callahan on injured reserve speaks to the team’s hope he will contribute in the second-half of the season, and also how difficult it is, if not impossible, to find quality cornerbacks into the season. Fangio said the IR was an option that was discussed.

"It was and still is,'' he said.

The Broncos are expected to give De’Vante Bausby his first start Sunday against Jacksonville. Bausby replaced Isaac Yiadom in the second quarter of the Broncos’ 27-16 loss at Green Bay on Sunday. The Broncos have also been bringing along Duke Dawson, a cornerback acquired from New England just prior to the season. Dawson has played one defensive snap this year, the rest on special teams.

Callahan's absence has messed up the Broncos' plan from the jump. Fangio had hoped to start Callahan at left corner and have Chris Harris Jr. play the slot in sub packages. Instead, Harris has stayed outside and safety Kareem Jackson has been playing the slot in sub packages.

"It's definitely had an impact,'' Fangio said.

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