ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — At least two of the Broncos’ injured players are expected to be back for training camp.
Head Coach Vic Fangio said Wednesday that running back Phillip Lindsay will be ready for the team’s mid-July start to camp, and guard Ron Leary said he is already practicing without limitations.
Leary, who suffered a torn Achilles in October, recently started to take reps with the first-team offense during team-period drills.
“I’m cleared,” Leary said. “I’m doing everything out there. I’ve been cleared by the doctors. Recovery went good. Probably was fast, but that’s a good thing. I feel great. I haven’t had any setbacks. Like I said, I’m doing everything and feel great out there.”
Lindsay, meanwhile, has been limited to individual drills as he recovers from a wrist injury he suffered on Christmas Eve.
“I feel like I’m very close,” Lindsay said. “It’s going to come down to the head coach and our training staff to make the decisions. I trust them and for me, I’m going to be ready when it’s time. That’s it. When they say, ‘It’s time to go. Let’s go today,’ I’ll be ready.”
Fangio said Lindsay likely could’ve participated in the team’s minicamp practices, but the team’s medical staff wanted the second-year player to avoid unnecessary contact.
“It’s a particular injury that they tell me it’s going well, they just want it to get bumped on yet,” Fangio said. “He could go out there and do everything, but they just want to use this time and the next five weeks to make sure he’s ready to go.”
Lindsay said he recognizes he shouldn’t participate when he’s “half-injured and half-healthy,” but the former undrafted player seems eager to return to the field.
“Any injury is frustrating, but I’m anxious to be out there with my teammates,” Lindsay said. “I see [Devontae] Book[er] and Royce [Freeman] putting in a lot of work, and I want to be out there with them. I like the grind. I like being tired. I like the sweat, the blood, the tears. That’s what I’m here for. I can’t wait to get back to that.”
When Lindsay does return, he said he’ll need to pick up a new blocking scheme, learn to be more patient in the offense and define his role.
As far as he can tell, that role should be similar to the one he held last season.
“Everybody has a role, and for me it’s about making big plays,” Lindsay said. “I’ve got to go out there and showcase that.”
The Colorado product rushed for over 1,000 yards and scored 10 total touchdowns as a rookie.
Leary will have a bit more of a transition to make.
In his third season with the Broncos, Leary will make his third position change. He played at right guard when he arrived in 2017, moved to left guard in 2018 and now appears set to move back to right guard. Though he largely played left guard with the Cowboys before joining the Broncos, Leary said Wednesday he never had a desire to move back to left guard after his initial switch to the right side of the line.
“I love right guard,” Leary said. “I think y’all might’ve said I wanted to go back to my natural spot at left guard more than me. I wanted to stay at right guard last year, and I made that known to the [former] coaches. But they decided to move [me] back to left. I’m glad to be at right. I feel I’m more comfortable at right. I had a great season at right my first year here. I’m excited to be at right.”
And he — like Lindsay soon will be — is just as excited to be healthy and back on the field.
“I’m doing everything out there now with no restrictions,” Leary said. “[Come training] camp, I’m going to be one of the guys."