ENGLEWOOD, Colo. --Brandon Marshall walked around the locker room with a sense of relief Thursday. The weakside linebacker's sprained foot could have been worse -- and after he suffered it last Sunday, he believed it was.
"When they took me to the sideline, I was trying to get back in the game. Every time I would get to the ball of my foot, it would collapse -- the middle of my foot would collapse," Marshall said. "So, I was like, 'Is the bone broken? Is the ligament torn? Because I can't stand on the ball of my foot.'"
And as he consulted with Broncos medical personnel, the news appeared bleak.
"They thought it was going to be worse honestly," Marshall said. "The doctors said I was lucky because they thought it was going to be worse. I'm glad I can play."
So it appears likely that there will be a tomorrow for the emerging third-year linebacker in the 2014 season, who suffered the injury when his foot was rolled on.Marshall did not practice Thursday, but said he got in some work in the pool, and was able to ditch the walking boot Tuesday.
The foot is "not where I would like it to be, but it's definitely better," he said, allowing him to turn his focus to a potential playoff return, and helping the Broncos' three rookie linebackers get up to speed.
"I have a lot of faith," Marshall said "Todd (Davis) came in and within a couple weeks he knew the defense. That tells you he's a quick study. So, I definitely have faith in him. He's a big, strong physical guy.
"Corey (Nelson) and Lamin (Barrow), those guys have been here since the spring, so they know the scheme. They just need experience. They need reps. That's what helped me out, more reps and all that stuff. So, once they get that, they'll be fine."
Davis was the primary backup Sunday after Marshall and Danny Trevathan succumbed to their injuries. Marshall said that Davis asked him a few questions to pick his brain Thursday.
"I gave him what I saw, I gave him my feedback," Marshall said. "And he's going to do fine, I guarantee it."
But even if Davis fares well, the Broncos can't wait to get Marshall back. And when he returns, he knows that his effectiveness will be determined in part by how well he manages the pain.
"Oh definitely, I think so -- especially at this time of the year, man, homestretch, playoffs," he said. "I don't think it will just come back 100 percent. But I think with the taping and the orthotic, it'll definitely help."
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Brandon Marshall and his family helped put together a clothing drive for the Rose Andom Center and survivors of domestic violence.