ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — The Broncos plan to place cornerback Bryce Callahan on injured reserve and activate wide receiver Tim Patrick ahead of Sunday’s game, Head Coach Vic Fangio announced Friday.
Fangio said the Broncos would make the move official on either Friday or Saturday.
Callahan, whom the Broncos signed in free agency ahead of the 2019 season, did not appear in a game this season as he battled a foot injury.
He last practiced Tuesday, as he tried to see if he could play on his injured foot. Callahan originally suffered the injury during Week 14 of the 2018 season while with the Bears, and he underwent offseason surgery. He returned to the field during the Broncos’ offseason program, but a teammate stepped on his foot during a July 27 practice.
Callahan only practiced in a limited capacity after that day, and he underwent a non-surgical procedure in September to try to fix the lingering issue. The fifth-year cornerback did not practice again until Tuesday, when he tested the foot.
“Part of his operation [last season], which is routine, they put a screw in there to promote healing,” Fangio said. “And the screw got bent, so it caused him a lot of discomfort and pain. Some guys have been able to play through with that, based on the level of discomfort and pain. His level was too high for him to play through that. But basically, the screw got bent. And I don’t know what having a screw bent in your foot feels like, but he had one.”
Now, Callahan will have another surgery to replace the screw. Fangio said he expects Callahan to make a full recovery.
“I hate to say it’s a fairly routine operation, but a lot of guys have it,” Fangio said. “This time, we need to make sure the screw doesn’t bend. We need to go to a better hardware store.”
Fangio said Callahan “should be” available for the 2020 season after undergoing surgery “soon.” Callahan would have missed the year even if he had undergone surgery earlier in the season, Fangio said.
The Broncos’ head coach added that he was unsure if the screw became bent during the July 27 practice.
Tim Patrick, meanwhile, will return to the Broncos’ roster for the first time since the team’s Week 1 game against the Raiders. Patrick will have no limitations on Sunday, according to Fangio.
Patrick caught 23 passes for 315 yards and a touchdown in 2018, when he recorded his first game action as a pro.
The Broncos can bring one more player back off injured reserve. Quarterback Drew Lock was designated to practice this week and must be activated by Dec. 3. If he is not activated, he will revert to injured reserve for the remainder of the season.