ENGLEWOOD—It could have been worse for Shaq Barrett.
The Broncos’ backup outside linebacker will not need surgery to repair his otherwise seriously injury hip, league sources told 9NEWS.
Barrett, 24, is expected to be out through the rest of the offseason and at least some portion of training camp. At this point it wouldn't be a surprise if he misses the early part of the regular season. He appeared to have suffered the injury while performing a plyometric jumping exercise, sources told 9NEWS.
Because the injury did not occur on the Broncos' watch, Barrett could possibly take a financial hit. He is due to draw $615,000 this year, but the team could withhold a portion of that salary if he is placed on non football injury (NFI) list. Barrett, who has been a key backup for the Broncos the previous two years, is in line to become a restricted free agent after this season.
Barrett is a fourth-year player from Colorado State who made the Broncos’ practice squad as a rookie in 2014 before he had a breakout year in 2015 with 5 ½ sacks. Barrett had only 1.5 sacks last year as opponents adjusted to his relentless motor and the Broncos gave more playing time to first-round pick Shane Ray.
Barrett’s injury and the retirement of DeMarcus Ware depletes the Broncos’ once incredible depth at the outside edge pass-rushing positions. The team now has Von Miller and Ray as its only known commodities at the pass-rushing linebacker position.
The Broncos did sign former New Orleans edge rusher Kasim Edebali as a free agent this offseason and return Vontarrius Dora, who shined in the preseason last year. Dora spent most of last season on the Broncos’ practice squad before receiving a late-season promotion to the 53-man roster.
The Broncos are also have hopes for Deon Hollins, an undrafted rookie outside linebacker from UCLA.