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Denver Broncos vs. New England Patriots: Vasquez and Barrow return to practice

Here's your Thursday injury report Broncos Country.

Doug Pensinger

The Broncos had some good news on the injury front today. Guard Louis Vasquez(Illness) and rookie linebacker Lamin Barrow(concussion) both missed practice on Wednesday, but both returned to practice on Thursday. However safety Quinton Carter missed his second straight practice with a hamstring injury.  Also Linebacker Steven Johnson was also limited again with an ankle injury.

Hamstrings are tricky injuries to recover from so we not see Carter this weekend against the Patriots.

Cornerback Omar Bolden has passed the concussion protocol, and will be good to go this weekend. Also tight end Virgil Green was added to the injury report with a calf injury, and was listed as limited.

Running back Montee Ball continues to work his way back from his groin injury. His initial 2 to 3 week prognosis is up, so I believe the Broncos are taking their time with Ball since running backs Ronnie Hillman and Juwan Thompson have done very well while Ball has been out. I think Ball is about 1 or 2 weeks away from getting back on the field.

Speaking of running backs, Ronnie Hillman who was limited during yesterday's practice with a shoulder injury was back out there today, but once again was limited. He's in no danger of missing Sunday's game, but it will be something to keep an eye on during Sunday's game.

It seems like the weather is always like this when the Broncos play in Foxboro. Initially you would think this forecast would benefit the Patriots, but lets step back and look at this.

The Patriots have a leaky defense, the Broncos suddenly have a good run game with Hillman/Thompson. If the weather is like that, the Patriots are going to have to rely on the run game as well, and the Broncos have the top run defense in the NFL.

So while the weather could slow Peyton down, I think this works into the Broncos favor.

As for the Patriots they will be without their top pass rusher Chandler Jones who is going to be out for awhile with a hip injury. The Patriots had a tough time generating a pass rush on the Broncos during their playoff matchup, and the Broncos were missing Ryan Clady that day. It wouldn't surprise anyone if the Patriots have a tough time getting to Peyton on Sunday.

Thursday Injury Report

Denver Broncos

Player Pos. Injury Wed. Thur. Fri. Game Status
Ball, Montee RB Groin DNP DNP
Barrow, Lamin LB Concussion DNP LIMITED
Carter, Quinton S Hamstring DNP DNP
Vasquez, Louis G Illness DNP LIMITED
Bolden, Omar CB Concussion LIMITED FULL
Hillman, Ronnie RB Shoulder LIMITED LIMITED
Johnson, Steven LB Ankle LIMITED LIMITED
Harris Jr., Chris CB Knee FULL FULL
McManus, Brandon K Right Groin FULL FULL
Thompson, Juwan RB Knee FULL FULL
Green, Virgil TE Calf - - - LIMITED

New England Patriots

Player Pos. Injury Wed. Thur. Fri. Game Status
Jones, Chandler DE Hip DNP DNP
Easley, Dominique DE Knee LIMITED LIMITED
Ebner, Nate S Finger LIMITED LIMITED
Fleming, Cameron T Finger LIMITED LIMITED
Slater, Matt WR Shoulder LIMITED LIMITED
Brady, Tom QB Ankle FULL FULL
Browner, Brandon CB Ankle FULL FULL
Hightower, Dont'a LB Knee FULL FULL
Branch, Alan DT Non-Injury - - - DNP