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Bronco notes: Jake Butt activated while Shelby Harris goes on IR

Chubb wins Ed Block award, while still iffy to play Sunday. McManus seeks long-range field goal record.
Credit: AP Photo/David Zalubowski
Denver Broncos tight end Jake Butt takes part in drills during an NFL football practice in empty Empower Field at Mile High, Saturday, Aug. 29, 2020, in Denver.

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — Oft-injured tight end Jake Butt may get one more chance to show he’s healthy.

The Broncos activated Butt off injured reserve Thursday after he missed the previous 10 weeks with a strained hamstring. He replaces defensive lineman Shelby Harris on the 53-man roster. Harris was placed on season-ending IR with a knee injury.

Harris finished the game Sunday against the Los Angeles Chargers and flew home immediately afterwards on a team-arranged private plane to catch the birth of his son at a Denver-area hospital Sunday night. It was then revealed Wednesday he has a knee injury.

Butt has been hurt since the Broncos took him with the first pick in the fifth round of the 2017 draft. He was rehabbing from a torn ACL suffered in Michigan’s bowl game at the time he was drafted. He missed his entire rookie year.

After showing promise through the first three games of his second season, he suffered another ACL tear in practice and missed the rest of that season and all of his third season in 2019. His four-year rookie contract essentially expires after the Broncos’ game Sunday against Las Vegas Raiders at Empower Field at Mile High.

Butt has played in just eight games for the Broncos and has 10 catches.

Chubb and Courage

Bradley Chubb was named the Broncos’ recipient of the Ed Block Courage Award. Chubb missed the final 12 weeks of last season with a torn ACL, but returned this season to be voted Pro Bowl starter at outside linebacker.

Chubb and the ankle

After missing the previous game against the Chargers and practice Wednesday because of a sprained ankle, Chubb attempted to return to practice Thursday. He seemed to move gingerly and not like an outside linebacker who’s ready to put torque on his lower body and come on a pass rush in a few days. At this point it would be a surprise if Chubb is able to play in the finale against the Raiders.

McManus 50+ mark

Broncos kicker Brandon McManus has tied an NFL single-season record with 10 field goals of at least 50 yards. The record of 10 half-field boots was set by the Vikings’ Blair Walsh in 2012 and tied by the Ravens’ Justin Tucker in 2016 and again by McManus this year. McManus has one more game Sunday to make it 11.

“I think Brandon's had a great season, and hopefully the right situation comes up at the right time and he can get an opportunity or two to break that record and add to it,’’ said Broncos’ head coach Vic Fangio.

McMahon future

Broncos special teams had such a rough first-half of the season, there was automatic question on whether special teams coordinator Tom McMahon would be retained in 2021. In McMahon’s defense, special teams have improved considerably in the last six or seven games. He was asked if he has thought about his future.

“No, I'm focused just on this game,’’ McMahon said. “I go game to game. Really, I'll be honest with you, how I look at my career is I go to the next game, go to the next moment. If you keep winning moments, you’re going to be in that Super Bowl. That's exactly how I approach every single week. I don't worry about tomorrows, I just worry about todays.’’

Bronco Bits

The Broncos’ organization announced a $250,000 grant for player-inspired social justice programs.

Jerry Jeudy is second among NFL pass catchers with 9 drops. The Steelers’ Diontae Johnson has 10.