ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — As Von Miller prepares to soon undergo surgery that is to repair the dislocated tendon in his ankle area, the Broncos are searching for his replacement.
The team did try to sign veteran free agent Clay Matthews III, but they couldn’t reach an agreement, according to his agent Ryan Williams. Matthews had 6.0 sacks through his first 5 games with the Los Angeles Rams last season. A broken jaw that required surgery curtailed his effectiveness the rest of the season.
Matthews also spurned an offer from the Seattle Seahawks earlier this summer, according to a source.
Matthews, 34, would have brought star power nearly to Miller’s level but instead the Broncos will first replace their Super Bowl 50 MVP with their own Malik Reed and Jeremiah Attaochu. Reed and Attaochu could also occasional spell Bradley Chubb at the other outside linebacker spot.
As for a fourth outside linebacker, the Broncos have seventh-round rookie outside linebacker Derrek Tuszka on their practice squad. He is one of their four “protected” players on their 16-man extra unit.
Under the new collective bargaining rules, the Broncos could call Tuszka up from their practice squad as insurance for their game Monday night against Tennessee, and then send him back down to the practice squad without having to clear waivers.
Such a move has not yet been determined.
The Broncos are also in the process of signing former Bears outside linebacker Isaiah Irving to their practice squad. Irving took his first COVID test just outside Broncos headquarters Thursday.
He would have to take the virus test Friday and Saturday before he could join the team.
Miller, meanwhile, was in Denver on Thursday awaiting conclusive prognosis from Dr. Robert Anderson, an orthopedic surgeon who specialists in foot and ankle surgeries. Miller suffered a dislocated tendon near his ankle area late in practice Tuesday. It has been determined he will have surgery although his agent Joby Branion was in the process of scheduling it.
Miller is heading into surgery hopeful he can still play later this season, according to a source. Multiple Broncos sources have told 9News he will not play this year.
During the media viewing portion of practice Thursday, No. 1 receiver Courtland Sutton suffered what appeared to be a left shoulder injury.
In a simple pass-catch drill against air, Sutton went up to make a one-handed, left-handed catch, then fell awkwardly on his right hand.
He was down clutching his left shoulder. After getting evaluated on the side of the practice field, he was escorted by team trainers into the locker room.
Practice is still going on.
No. 3 safety Trey Marshall didn’t practice Thursday. He walked out to the practice field about a half hour with his right wrist heavily taped. Safety P.J. Locke is another one of the four “protected” players the Broncos put on their practice squad Wednesday evening.