ENGLEWOOD, Colo.** – With the announcement that left tackle Ryan Clady has suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament during the first day of OTAs now makes for an important offseason for the Broncos offensive line.
A position group that seemed to be in flux before now boasts more question marks than answers. The Broncos now only return two lineman who garnered starts last season for the 2015 slate: tackle Chris Clark and guard Louis Vasquez.
While the group may look to rookie tackle Ty Sambrailo and 2014 draft pick tackle Michael Schofield for assistance, Clark's experience and leadership is needed now more than ever. Over his seven-year career, Clark has notched 27 starts.
"We've still got a good leader in Chris Clark, who's obviously been in the league a number of years and he's got a tremendous amount of snaps under his belt," said Vasquez. "I'll pull him alongside with me and have him help me tow the group where we need to go."
Luckily for the line, Offensive Coordinator Rick Dennison and Offensive Line Coach Clancy Barone, Clark has a history of stepping up to the plate following an injury. In 2013 when Clady suffered a season-ending Lisfranc injury two games into the year, Clark stepped up and assumed the left tackle position.
According to Pro Football Focus, Clark allowed only two sacks and two hits in 13 games in 2014. Last season, he earned a 3.8 pass block rating in 500 snaps.