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Sean Payton provides an injury update to Jerry Jeudy as a young receiver impresses the Broncos' coaching staff

Zac Stevens Avatar
August 24, 2023

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — Another day, another injury to the Broncos’ receiver room.

Early in Thursday’s joint practice against the Rams, after running full speed during a play, Jerry Jeudy immediately grabbed his hamstring as he slowed down.

Before taking a step, trainers immediately went to Jeudy’s side. With two trainers helping him, he got on a cart and left practice.

“It’s a hamstring,” Sean Payton said after practice. “He’ll get an MRI. We’ll kind of see where he’s at with it.”

After losing Tim Patrick for the season with a torn achilles and Brandon Johnson for a few weeks to an ankle sprain, Jeudy’s injury is another blow to Denver’s receiver room. Despite that, Payton doesn’t believe the receiver room is “snakebitten” by injuries, adding “things happen.”

“He plays Z, he plays in the sub position for us,” the head coach said. “Hopefully it’s not anything long term.”

But, as is the NFL, it’s next man up.

“Someone’s going to have to step up,” Payton said. “We got a lot of guys.”

While Payton stated it’s too early to determine who will step up in Jeudy’s place, rookie receiver Marvin Mims has caught the eye of the Broncos’ offensive coaching staff.

“He was better today. I think he’s making progress,” Payton said about Denver’s second-round pick. “He’s doing well. It’s good to have him getting all these practice snaps, these punt returns. He’ll play quite a bit on Saturday.”

A reason why the rookie speedster was better in Thursday’s practice, according to Payton, was because he changed his cleats to be better equipped for the slippery grass.

“This field is a little slick. He changed up his shoes today and I thought that helped him,” the head coach added. “If you’re in the molded shoes, you can actually walk out there and see a lot of the — you see it on tape, a lot of player sliding. So we got into a little bit long cleat and I think better footing.”

Offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi “for sure” believes Mims can be a player that steps up in the receiver room.

“He was hurt the first couple of weeks of camp, but since he’s been back, we’ve been impressed with him,” the veteran coordinator stated. “Hopefully he keeps developing and keeps performing like he has. We’re real optimistic about him.”

In the draft process, Mims was viewed as a player that doesn’t need a lot of time to develop, which could help him take this opportunity and run with it as a rookie.

Payton’s no stranger to having rookie receivers thrive. In New Orleans, both Michael Thomas and Marques Colston had 1,000-yard receivers as rookies. Mims could be the next player to join that list, especially with the mounting injuries in the receiver room.

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