ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — The door to the Broncos’ trainers room needs to be replaced with a swinging gate.
As the team welcomes back receiver KJ Hamler this week, and carries some hope No. 1 receiver Courtland Sutton will also return, the Broncos will not have top cornerback A.J. Bouye or running back Phillip Lindsay for their game Sunday at Pittsburgh, sources tell 9News.
Bouye was placed on injured reserve, which means he will miss at least the next three games. Lindsay is also a long shot to play the following week against Tampa Bay and considered Game 4 at the New York Jets is a shortened week, he may not play in that game, either.
Bouye had his shoulder pop out late in the first half of the Broncos’ opener Monday night against Tennessee. It was popped back in, but it is a dislocation. There is hope he can play with a harness as soon as Game 5 at New England. The Broncos called up veteran cornerback De’Vante Bausby from the practice squad. He is expected to play as the co-No. 3 cornerback with rookie Essang Bassey. Bausby plays outside; Bassey as the slot corner. Bryce Callahan and rookie Michael Ojemudia are expected to start.
Lindsay has a bad case of turf toe, an extremely tough injury for a running back. A source said Lindsay could also be sidelined more than a game or two.
The Broncos still have a solid backup to starting running back Melvin Gordon III in Royce Freeman. It's also possible the Broncos could call up running back LeVante Bellamy from the practice squad. He was among the Broncos' designated four "protected" practice squad players, along with safety P.J. Locke, outside linebacker Derrek Tuszka and quarterback Brett Rypien.
Locke and Tuszka were protected last week and they were called up to the active roster Monday and played special teams against the Titans. Bellamy is an undrafted rookie from Western Michigan does resemble Lindsay in size, style and speed, so he would be logical candidate for a call-up Sunday at Pittsburgh.
To fill Bausby's spot on the practice squad, the Broncos signed former Bears' outside linebacker Isaiah Irving.
Bradley Chubb is getting there.
The Broncos’ outside linebacker wasn’t credited with a tackle and he didn’t have a sack in the Broncos’ season-opening 16-14 loss to the Tennessee Titans. It was the Broncos’ other outside pass rusher, Jeremiah Attaochu, who applied the most frequent pressure on Titans’ quarterback Ryan Tannehill.
But Chubb did play 59 of 81 defensive snaps – his first playing time since tearing his left ACL in game 4 last season – and he had two hits on the quarterback.
“I was encouraged by his play, I think he was too,’’ said Broncos head coach Vic Fangio. “He’s not where he was but he’s getting there. And I think he’ll get there quickly.”