The Denver Broncos earned the number two seed in the AFC which granted them a bye week during the Wildcard round of the playoffs. This was a much needed week off because the Broncos haven't had a week off since week four of the regular season, and players were tired and banged up.
The week off gave players like linebacker Brandon Marshall(Foot), safeties T.J. Ward(Neck) and David Bruton(Concussion), and guard Orlando Franklin(Concussion) time to recover from various injuries. All four of these players returned to the practice field today as the Broncos begin their preparations for the Indianapolis Colts.
Marshall running well. Ward explosive. Good signs Franklin and Bruton have advanced in protocol to do exercise. #broncos— Troy Renck (@TroyRenck) January 5, 2015
The notable name here is linebacker Brandon Marshall. Marshall suffered a foot sprain during the Broncos game in San Diego, and there was fear that it was a significant injury. Thankfully the injury only ended up to be a minor one, and there was talk that Marshall could have gone the season finale game against the Raiders if the team really needed him.
The return of Marshall to the Broncos defense would be huge. He lead the team in tackles with 113, and 2 sacks, 1 forced fumble, and one interception to his stat sheet as well. Marshall was also credited to be one of the top 4-3 outside linebackers in the league according to Pro Football Focus. Marshall ranked high in run defense as well as coverage. With Andrew Luck and company coming into town next Sunday his addition would be huge for the Broncos.
Manning returns to practice
Peyton Manning took a much needed rest last week by sitting out each of the practices the Broncos held. He has been dealing with a thigh injury, and overall wear and tear so the time off was needed.
Look for Manning to practice fully all week, and hopefully the time off helped rejuvenate him.