ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) — What started out as the Denver Broncos' deepest position group ended up as their thinnest after wide receiver Jerry Jeudy was carted off the field with a hamstring injury Thursday.
Jeudy was running an end-around in an 11-on-11 red zone drill in a joint practice with the Los Angeles Rams when he pulled up, grabbing his right hamstring and crumpling to the grass near the sideline.
He had to be helped to the cart, then was taken for an MRI.
“Hopefully it's not anything long term,” coach Sean Payton said.
The Broncos started training camp with Tim Patrick injuring his left Achilles almost a year to the day after tearing his right ACL. He'll miss his second straight season.
The same day Patrick got hurt, the Broncos lost KJ Hamler to a heart condition and last week they lost Jalen Virgil to a season-ending knee injury. He got hurt at the end of a 50-yard pass play against San Francisco just before halftime.
“I don't believe in being snake-bitten. I think we've had a really good offseason program,” Payton said, noting the likes of Justin Simmons and Mike McGlinchey are returning from injuries in time for the start of the season.
Jeudy’s injury leaves Courtland Sutton, rookie Marvin Mims Jr., second-year pro Brandon Johnson and Kendall Hinton as Russell Wilson’s top options heading into a preseason finale against the Rams in Denver this weekend.
A second-round pick out of Oklahoma, Mims' acclimation to the NFL as both a receiver and a kick returner has been slowed by a pair of hamstring pulls, although he appears to be fully recovered from those setbacks.
“He'll play quite a bit on Saturday," Payton said.
Jeudy missed two games last season while dealing with rib and left ankle injuries and a right high ankle sprain in 2021 sidelined him for six games.
Entering his fourth season, the 2020 first-round pick had emerged as Denver’s No. 1 receiver after a strong finish last season when he had 35 catches for 523 yards and three touchdowns over the final six weeks of the season.
Jeudy caught Wilson's only touchdown pass this preseason, a 21-yard score on fourth down against the Arizona Cardinals.
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Arnie Stapleton, The Associated Press