Broncos Rumors

Broncos Promote Trey Marshall

The Broncos will waive safety Shamarko Thomas in order to promote rookie safety Trey Marshall from the practice squad, league sources tell Mike Klis of 9News (on Twitter). While the Broncos value Thomas’ special teams acumen, they were compelled to make the move in order to prevent the Cardinals from signing Marshall off of the taxi squad. 

The Cardinals wound up with an open roster spot on Monday when they were forced to place defensive tackle Robert Nkemdiche on injured reserve. Marshall won’t turn 23 until February and would have been worth a look for Arizona’s 2019 roster, but the Broncos stepped in to prevent that from happening. He’ll now have a chance to make his NFL debut with Denver after compiling 135 tackles, one sack, and six passes defensed while at Florida State.

Thomas, a fourth-round pick of the Steelers in 2013, will become a free agent if he is not claimed on waivers. He appeared in six games for Denver this year and recorded seven total tackles.

The Broncos are 6-7 after Sunday’s loss to the 49ers, but they technically still have a shot at reaching the playoffs as a Wild Card team.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Latest On Broncos Ownership

We’ve been updating you on the Broncos ownership saga, and the case took another turn today. Owner Pat Bowlen‘s brother, Bill Bowlen, has filed a lawsuit requesting that the trust that currently controls the team be dismantled. Pat has been dealing with Alzheimer’s for years now, and a trust led by CEO Joe Ellis has been running the team. Bill is arguing that the trust was created illegally and is attempting to gain control of the team. Last month, the trust responded by asking a court to dismiss the lawsuit and send it to NFL arbitration for the league to mediate.

Emmanuel Sanders Undergoes Surgery

On Wednesday, Emmanuel Sanders‘ season was cut short when he torn his Achilles during practice. On Friday, the veteran receiver underwent successful surgery and is expected to miss six-to-eight months, the NFL Network’s James Palmer tweets

The loss was a huge blow to the suddenly resurgent Broncos’ playoff chances. Though the team has won three consecutive games, it will have to replace its top receiver with a collection of rookie pass catchers in Courtland Sutton and DaeSean Hamilton.

Sanders had posted 71 receptions and 868 yards before the injury and was on pace for one of his best seasons in the league. With four games remaining, the nine-year veteran was well on pace to post his fourth 1,000-yard season and was likely to record his second-most receptions in a single campaign.

The rehab time frame sets him up to return for the 2019 season, which will be the final one on his contract. Though expected to make $10.15MM in base salary next season, the Broncos can release him with just $2.687MM in dead money.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

How The Broncos Acquired Andre Holmes

  • The Broncos lost one of their most important offensive players in Emmanuel Sanders on Wednesday, but they did get a little lucky in acquiring fellow receiver Andre Holmes off waivers from the Bills, as Mike Klis of 9News explains (Twitter link). Sanders went down with a torn Achilles at 12:06 MT, and Denver’s doctors had diagnosed him 14 minutes later. When practice ended at 1:20, Broncos offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave relayed to the club’s personnel department that he had coached Holmes while the two were in Oakland. Five minutes before the waiver deadline, the Broncos put in a claim on Holmes.

Broncos Claim WR Andre Holmes

The Broncos claimed wide receiver Andre Holmes off waivers, as Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets. The Broncos will turn to Holmes for receiving help after the loss of Emmanuel Sanders to an unfortunate Achilles injury. 

Prior to being released by the Bills on Tuesday, Holmes had 12 catches for 157 yards on the season. He’ll have to quickly get familiar with his new team, but his time with offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave in Oakland should help.

Holmes played his best football in Oakland, including a 2014 season in which he caught 47 passes for 693 yards and four touchdowns. Since then, he’s been much more of a role player and has not amassed more than 14 grabs in a season. But, in Denver, he may have a chance to shine now that Sanders is out of action and Demaryius Thomas is in Houston.

Holmes will have an opportunity to make his Broncos debut on Sunday against the Niners.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Broncos’ Emmanuel Sanders Suffers Torn Achilles

Awful news out of Denver. During Wednesday’s practice, Broncos wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders suffered a torn Achilles tendon, according to Mike Klis of 9News (on Twitter). 

Sanders is the team’s top receiver and losing him is a huge blow to the team’s playoff hopes. The 6-6 Broncos are riding a three-game winning streak, but they’ll have to make their late season push without the help of their best offensive weapon.

Prior to the injury, Sanders hauled in 71 catches for 868 yards and four touchdowns. Statistically speaking, he was on pace for his second-best season behind a 2014 campaign in which he had 101 catches for 1,404 yards and nine TDs.

The Broncos have lost three other starters (center Matt Paradis, left guard Max Garcia, and tight end Jeff Heuerman) to IR over the past month and cornerback Chris Harris could be next depending on how fast he can recover from a fractured fibula. The Broncos have an easy draw in the 2-10 49ers this weekend, but they’ll be at half-strength for the rest of the regular season, including a Week 17 matchup against the Chargers.

In hindsight, the Broncos may or may not regret their midseason trade of Demaryius Thomas. Of course, hindsight is 20/20, and the Broncos will have to bank on youngster Courtland Sutton even more going forward. It’s likely that Tim Patrick will line up on the opposite side of Sutton the rest of the way with DaeSean Hamiton stepping into Sanders’ role.

Sanders, 32 in March, is under contract through next year with a cap number of $12.9MM. It’s worth keeping an eye on his recovery – which often takes 7-8 months – as the Broncos can release him with just $2.687MM in dead money.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Minor NFL Transactions: 12/4/18

We’ll keep track of today’s minor moves here:

Atlanta Falcons

Arizona Cardinals

Buffalo Bills

Denver Broncos

Green Bay Packers

Miami Dolphins

Oakland Raiders

Pittsburgh Steelers

Washington Redskins

Broncos To Sign CB Jamar Taylor

The Broncos are signing cornerback Jamar Taylor, a source tells Mike Garafolo of NFL.com (on Twitter). He’ll help fill the void for Denver while Chris Harris recovers from a broken leg. 

The former Dolphins and Browns corner was released by the Cardinals in November after he failed to solidify himself as a proper counterpart to star Patrick Peterson. He’s now on to team No. 4 in a career that has seen him traded twice — from Miami to Cleveland in 2016 and from Cleveland to Arizona earlier this year.

With the Broncos, Taylor figures to get involved in the rotation behind Bradley Roby and Tramaine Brock. Recent third-round picks Isaac Yiadom and Brendan Langley are also on hand and safety Justin Simmons may continue to see snaps at slot cornerback. Ideally, the Broncos would probably prefer to keep Simmons at his native spot while occasionally using Taylor as the third corner.

The Broncos’ playoff hopes are still alive at 6-6 and they have a mostly plum schedule to finish out the year. The Broncos will take on the 49ers, Browns, and Raiders in the next three games before closing the season against the red-hot Chargers.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

NFL Workout Updates: 12/3/18

Here is the latest from the workout circuit. All links to NFL reporter Howard Balzer’s Twitter account, unless otherwise noted.

Buffalo Bills

Cleveland Browns

Denver Broncos

Detroit Lions

  • G Salesi Uhatafe (link)

Indianapolis Colts

Jacksonville Jaguars

New Orleans Saints

New York Giants

Oakland Raiders

Seattle Seahawks

Washington Redskins

NFL Practice Squad Updates: 12/3/18

Here are Monday’s practice squad decisions:

Denver Broncos

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tennessee Titans