Run­ning back com­pe­ti­tion.

With sec­ond-year pro Devon­tae Booker in­jured and vet­eran Ja­maal Charles lim­ited, the po­si­tion is open for busi­ness.

The Denver Post - - SPORTS - By Nicki Jhab­vala

Bron­cos run­ning back Devon­tae Booker will un­dergo surgery Fri­day to re­pair a frac­ture in his wrist and is ex­pected to miss at least six weeks. For depth dur­ing train­ing camp and the pre­sea­son, the Bron­cos signed for­mer Jets and Pa­tri­ots run­ning back Ste­van Ri­d­ley to a one-year con­tract.

Booker said he will have a screw in­serted in his wrist to sta­bi­lize the bone, and he will be placed on the Bron­cos’ phys­i­cally un­able to per­form (PUP) list. His train­ing camp and pre­sea­son are over be­fore it be­gan, but he could be back in time for Week 1, if not sooner. (He can come off the PUP list at any time be­fore the start of the sea­son but can­not go back on once he prac­tices.)

“It all hap­pened prob­a­bly the last week of OTAs, and I didn’t know it was a real bad in­jury,” Booker told The Den­ver Post. “I just thought I sprained my wrist. The swelling went down be­fore I went home. When I was back home do­ing sum­mer train­ing, lift­ing weights and stuff, cer­tain of range of mo­tion, like if I was do­ing push-ups or bench press, I had to limit my weight on that stuff. As soon as I got back here, they X-rayed it (and) found it in the X-ray.

“I’ll be fine. I’ll be back. Good spir­its will help it heal quicker.”

Last sea­son, Booker led Den­ver’s backs in the wake of C.J. An­der­son’s knee in­jury, to­tal­ing 174 car­ries, 612 rush­ing yards and four rush­ing touch­downs. His loss for the next month and a half cre­ates ad­di­tional op­por­tu­ni­ties for rookie De’An­gelo Hen­der­son and vet­eran Juwan Thomp­son — and now Ri­d­ley too.

Af­ter the Bron­cos’ morn­ing prac­tice at camp, Ri­d­ley worked out for head coach Vance Joseph, of­fen­sive co­or­di­na­tor Mike McCoy and run­ning backs coach Eric Studesville in the team’s field­house. The Bron­cos signed him shortly af­ter, adding an­other vet­eran to the al­ready-crowded run­ning backs room.

Ri­d­ley was drafted by the Pa­tri­ots out of LSU in 2011 and spent four years with New Eng­land, top­ping 1,200 rush­ing yards in 2012. In 2014, his fi­nal sea­son with the club, Ri­d­ley tore mul­ti­ple lig­a­ments in his knee and was placed on sea­so­nend­ing in­jured re­serve for the team’s Su­per Bowl XLIX run.

Ri­d­ley signed with the Jets in 2015 and played eight games af­ter re­cov­er­ing from knee surgery, to­tal­ing 90 yards on 36 car­ries. Over the last three years, he has bounced from five dif­fer­ent teams fol­low­ing his in­jury and has played in only 15 games. In his six NFL sea­sons, he has av­er­aged 47.8 yards per game and to­taled 22 rush­ing touch­downs.

To clear a ros­ter spot for Ri­d­ley, the Bron­cos waived guard Chris Muller.

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