BRONCOS

Broncos top safety will miss “some time,” report says Justin Simmons to IR

Sep 14, 2022, 1:21 PM | Updated: 1:51 pm
Justin Simmons...
(Photo by AAron Ontiveroz/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
(Photo by AAron Ontiveroz/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images)

Broncos head coach Nathaniel Hackett started his Wednesday press conference with bad news.

Safety Justin Simmons will miss “some time” after hurting his quad in the second half against the Seahawks. Hackett wouldn’t elaborate on how long, but it’s a huge blow to the Denver defense.

9NEWS and 104.3 The Fan Broncos insider Mike Klis is reporting Simmons is head to injured reserve. That means he’ll miss a minimum of four games.  The Broncos are signing veteran safety Anthony Harris to the practice squad as an extra body to help replace Simmons. NFL executives ranked Simmons the top safety in the NFL in a preseason ESPN poll.

“He’s a competitor. He’s one of those guys, he played the whole game with it. I’ve got so much respect for him just as a person and as a player,” Hackett said of Simmons.

Simmons hasn’t missed a game for the Broncos since the 2017 season, playing and starting all 65 games for Denver the last four years. In fact, he played every single snap during that stretch, more than 3,200 in total until that streak ended last September in a blowout win over the Jets.

Hackett was asked if safety Caden Sterns will fill Simmons’ spot, but wouldn’t commit to that. Sterns is a likely candidate, given he’s widely regarded as the No. 3 safety on Denver’s roster. Sterns started two of 15 games for Denver in his rookie season in 2021.

Simmons was scheduled to speak with the media on Wednesday, but the Broncos didn’t make him available, instead putting fellow safety Kareem Jackson on the podium.

“Caden’s played a ton of ball at high level in this league… I expect him to step in and play great,” Jackson said.

The Broncos take on the Texans on Sunday at Empower Field at Mile High. They’ll look to get back to .500 on the season after a brutal 17-16 loss to Seattle in Week 1, but won’t have Simmons in the fold for a bit.

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