According to 9NEWS Denver’s Mike Klis, veteran slot cornerback K’Waun Williams is undergoing surgery on his ankle today. Klis states that the team is deciding whether or not Williams will be placed on the short-term injured reserve which would sideline him for a minimum of four weeks or the season-ending injured reserve.
Per source, Broncos veteran nickelback K'Waun Williams is undergoing ankle surgery in North Carolina today. No decision yet on whether he will go on short-term IR or season-ending IR.— Mike Klis (@mikeklis) August 28, 2023
Tough injury for solid nickel who played in 14 games for Broncos last year. #9sports
This is a tough break for the Broncos' defense since Williams is one of the better slot cornerbacks in the game when he is healthy. However, he has struggled with injuries throughout his career and is now 32 years old. Hopefully, he will be placed on the short-term injured reserve and have a chance to return this season. Ending his season would be a tough blow to the Broncos secondary.
With Williams sidelined, that does open up a roster spot for someone. Preseason star Essang Bassey who had three interceptions during the Broncos' three exhibition games looks like the next man up at the position. He has struggled at times during his career but has looked improved so far this summer. Second-year cornerback Ja’Quan McMillian will now likely make the roster as well and provide some added depth to the position.
Complicating things even more is the status of rookie cornerback Riley Moss who has been sidelined for about a month now due to core surgery. He appeared to be a candidate for a short-term IR-stint as well since he missed the vast majority of training camp and the entirety of the preseason. So, we shall see what the Broncos do with him moving forward.
I would also expect the Broncos to utilize their safety depth more with their cornerback depth a little shaky at the moment. They could use the big nickel look and have Justin Simmons, Caden Sterns, and Kareem Jackson all on the field at once. So, I think we will see that a good bit this season. It is also possible that the Broncos make a move for a corner here during the cut down period, so we have to keep an eye out for that as well.