Knee injury derails Winn
Denver defensive line takes a hit with the season-ending loss of sixth-year pro
Broncos defensive lineman Billy Winn is out for the rest of the season after tearing his anterior cruciate ligament and suffering damage to other ligaments in his right knee during Thursday night’s preseason opener at Chicago, an NFL source confirmed.
Winn appeared to plant his right leg awkwardly and got tangled under the pile on a Bears run late in the first quarter of the Broncos’ 24-17 victory at Soldier Field. He grabbed his knee in pain and was carted off the field.
After the game, Winn hobbled out of the stadium with the help of crutches. An MRI on Friday confirmed the injury was worse than the Broncos initially expected.
A sixth-year pro, Winn joined the Broncos last August on a oneyear deal and played in all 16 games, finishing with 19 tackles and a fumble recovery. He resigned with Denver in early May as part of the Broncos’ rebuilt defensive line that includes newcomers Domata Peko and Zach Kerr.
The loss of Winn is the latest among a growing list of injured players for the Broncos, and it leaves them thin, especially at nose tackle.
Winn was listed on the team’s first depth chart as the No. 2 nose tackle behind Peko. Kyle Peko, the team’s No. 3 nose tackle, is on the
physically unable to perform list because of a broken foot. At the time of his injury in July, Kyle was expected to return early in camp.
Kyle is expected to still compete for a roster spot when he comes off the PUP list, and the Broncos also have undrafted rookies Shakir Soto and Tyrique Jarrett to consider. But the team is expected to make a move to fill Winn’s role.
Meanwhile, outside linebackers Shane Ray (wrist) and Shaquil Barrett (hip) are recovering from injuries and aren’t expected back until early in the regular season.
Inside linebacker Todd Davis is dealing with a sprained shoulder that has kept him out of multiple practices and will limit his appearances in the preseason. And safety T.J. Ward injured his hamstring and did not play at Chicago.
On offense, running back Devontae Booker tore a ligament in his wrist early in training camp and was to miss at least six weeks. Center Matt Paradis (hips) and running back Jamaal Charles (knees), neither of whom played Thursday, continue to inch their way back to to full-time status. Also, rookie QB Chad Kelly (wrist, ACL) and rookie tight end Jake Butt (ACL) are on the nonfootball injury list as they recover from injuries suffered before their arrival in Colorado.
Billy Winn, injured Thursday, won’t play again this year.