The hearts of everyone in Broncos Country collectively dropped when they saw the replay of Jerry Jeudy’s ankle injury suffered against the New York Giants.
At first glance, it looked like the Broncos could be without one of their most exciting young stars, in the midst of a breakout season, for the rest of the year. Fortunately, Jeudy’s ankle injury turned out to be much less severe than many assumed live, and he’s now set to return against the Washington Football Team.
According to head coach Vic Fangio, Jeudy even could have played this week against the Cleveland Browns if the Broncos were willing to rush it.
“I think the expectation is he will play [the Washington] game,” Fangio told the media on Friday. “He was medically cleared to play this past game, and he wanted to play. We didn’t think it was prudent to play him with no practice.”
Getting Jeudy back could potentially be huge for this offense. In the four games, the Broncos have been without Jeudy and K.J. Hamler — two receivers that really play to the strengths of the starting quarterback — Teddy Bridgewater has struggled quite a bit. Getting Jeudy back, and returning the Broncos to their trio of Courtland Sutton, Tim Patrick and Jeudy, could be the spark this team needs.
Not only is Jeudy expected to be back against the Washington Football Team, but field-stretching tight end Albert Okwuegbunam is also expected to be back.
“We’ll see where he’s at,” Fangio said of Patrick’s potential availability. “There was some hope when he first got hurt that he would only miss two games, but with the third game being a Thursday game, we put him on IR. He wouldn’t have been able to play last night if we didn’t IR him. We’ll see where he’s at this week. Hopefully, he’ll be good.”
Okwuegbunam’s return may be less impactful, as Pat Shurmur seemingly doesn’t know how to use hyper-athletic tight ends, but it does provide the Broncos with another weapon opposing defenses will be forced to respect.