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Two days ago, Broncos defensive end Derek Wolfe was sporting a boot on his foot and a brace on his hand. Suiting up for Monday night’s game at Kansas City then was in doubt.
“I’m not going to lie, I didn’t think I was going to be able to play a couple days ago,” he said. “I was like, ‘Man, I don’t know.’ But we got a great training staff here. They get us ready to play. That’s what they’re best at. It would take a lot for me to not be playing a Monday Night Football game against the Chiefs. … I feel great now.”
Wolfe said he sprained his foot, which is black and blue from 300-pound linemen stomping on it in games.
“It comes with the territory,” Wolfe said with a smile. “It’s not like it’s the first time it’s ever happened. Just need to rest it a few days and you’ll be good.”
Sanders was ruled out for last weekend’s game and could reasonably miss a second game.
Davis, who suffered a high ankle sprain against the Chargers, has yet to be ruled out. But his potentially loss would be a blow to the Broncos’ run defense as they prepare to face Kansas City and the league’s leading rusher, Kareem Hunt.
“We’re still in the evaluation process,” defensive coordinator Joe Woods said of Wolfe and Davis. “We feel like those guys will make it to the game, but if not, are in position and have been doing a good job to step up. Our plan is always to try stop the run first — make teams one-dimensional and then get after them in the pass game.”
Quarterback Paxton Lynch practiced in full for the first time this season, after spraining his right (throwing) shoulder. Receiver/returner Isaiah McKenzie (ankle) and tight end A.J. Derby (shoulder) also practiced in full after being limited Thursday.
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Broncos turf manager passes. Luke Kellerman, the Broncos assistant turf manager, lost his lengthy battle to cancer Thursday. He was 34.
Kellerman inspired the “Fight Like a Bronco” campaign that, in partnership with the American Cancer Society, recognizes all forms of cancer. Kellerman was honored by the Broncos at a practice two weeks ago and was given a game ball by players.
Talking TOs. The Broncos are the only team in the NFL that has yet to force a fumble, an alarming stat for a defense that prides itself on big plays. Denver has four takeaways this season — all interceptions — while its offense has given the ball away 12 times, tied for sixth-most in the NFL. The team’s turnover differential of minus-8 ranks 29th.
Offensive coordinator Mike McCoy said the coaching staff has stressed protecting the ball and eliminating penalties on offense. Woods, meanwhile, continues to emphasize stripping the ball to force a fumble and accrue more takeaways.
“It’s just that one stat,” Wolfe said. “I don’t know. It’s not like we’re not trying. It’s not like we’re not trying to rip the ball out of the running back’s hands, not trying to get picks, not trying to bat the ball around and get sack-fumbles. We’re trying. But they come in bunches. … We got a lot of time left. There’s a lot of time to improve that and get that going, because it’s not like we’re not doing it in practice. We’re out here practicing every day on ripping the ball out, picking the ball up, sack-fumbles and stuff like that. … We just got to make it happen in the game.”
No fine. Chargers defensive end Melvin Ingram was not fined for his hit on Trevor Siemian last Sunday that left the quarterback with a black-and-blue nose. Ingram was penalized during the game for roughing the passer.