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Broncos place Justin Simmons on injured reserve


The Broncos' preparation is underway for their Thursday-night game against the Colts. (Photos by Gabriel Christus unless noted)

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. —** Safety Justin Simmons' promising second season came to an abrupt end Wednesday as the Broncos placed him on injured reserve.

Simmons suffered a high-ankle sprain in the first quarter of the Broncos' win over the Jets. Though Head Coach Vance Joseph initially thought the sprain to be mild, Simmons was unable to practice this week.

Second-year safety Will Parks is expected to start in Simmons' place. On Monday, Joseph said he has been impressed with Parks' play this season.

"Will played solid," Joseph said. "Will's been a starter all year for us, so I wasn't surprised that he can go in a game and operate for us. It was more at high safety. But he's repped there all season, so I wasn't surprised he played well."

Parks was understandably saddened to see his teammate suffer a serious injury during Sunday's game, but he said on Tuesday that he is ready for the opportunity to play more.

"Obviously it was unfortunate Justin went down so early in the game, but it's next man up," Parks said. "You pray for the opportunity to get more playing time, opportunities to make more plays out there on the field, and I had the opportunity. You take full advantage of it."

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