Jan 7, 2024; Paradise, Nevada, USA; Las Vegas Raiders running back Zamir White (35) is pushed out of bounds by Denver Broncos linebacker Drew Sanders (41) during the second quarter at Allegiant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Broncos LB Drew Sanders has torn Achilles

The Denver Broncos won’t have second-year linebacker Drew Sanders until late in the 2024 season, if then, due to a torn Achilles that he sustained last month, ESPN reported Monday.

News of the injury was first reported by 9News in Denver. Sanders’ recovery time is expected to be six to nine months, and the injury occurred in mid-April. Sanders has since undergone surgery.

The third-round pick in the 2023 draft played in all 17 games last season, with four starts.

The team had not acknowledged the injury, and last month, Broncos general manager George Paton mentioned Sanders among the players under consideration for playing time at outside linebacker.

In this year’s draft, however, Denver took Utah outside linebacker Jonah Elliss in the third round.

–Field Level Media

East Rutherford, NJ     November 24, 2023 -- Zach Wilson and Aaron Rodgers of the Jets in the first half as the Miami Dolphins defeated the NY Jets 34-13 at MetLife Stadium on November 24, 2023 in East Rutherford, NJ to play in the first    Black Friday    NFL game.

Aaron Rodgers’ return depends on Jets’ record

New York Jets quarterback Aaron Rodgers is getting closer to returning to the field from a torn Achilles, but he isn’t physically ready to make a decision about playing again this season.

Some of the decision-making process will involve whether the Jets have a chance at a playoff berth, he said during his weekly appearance on “The Pat McAfee Show” on Tuesday.

Rodgers, who turns 40 on Saturday, suffered the injury on his first series with the Jets during the season opener against the Buffalo Bills on Sept. 11.

“It’s always been, first, am I healthy, and then are we alive, are we in it, are we playing good enough to make a run? Can I step in and protect myself and play at the level that I feel like I’m capable of playing? But the first part is to help so can I protect myself, can I move around the way I want to move around, so there’s a natural progression here to the rehab,” he said.

“And, you know, that’s going to involve actually getting back onto the field to start to do some things that are more football related but again, we’re still not where I can make a decision on playing.”

Behind beleaguered Zach Wilson and his replacement, Tim Boyle, the Jets are 4-7 and currently out of the playoff picture. They host the Atlanta Falcons (5-6) on Sunday.

The four-time NFL Most Valuable Player said Tuesday that doctors haven’t cleared him.

“I think the step is just getting back onto the field and doing some more real football things,” Rodgers said. “Throw to my teammates and go through some individual part of practice. I think will be kind of the next step to see what my lateral movement is like, and after going through some of these more football related moves, how do I respond? How does my leg respond to that?”

–Field Level Media

Oct 15, 2023; East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA; New York Jets injured quarterback Aaron Rodgers (left) and head coach Robert Saleh on the sidelines during the first quarter against the Philadelphia Eagles at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Jets ‘leaving door open’ for Aaron Rodgers to play this season

Medical opinion and age are two major opponents Jets quarterback Aaron Rodgers needs to beat as he recovers from a torn Achilles tendon, but New York head coach Robert Saleh dares you to doubt his 39-year-old starter can be back on the field this season.

Saleh said Tuesday the Jets are leaving the door open for Rodgers to make a comeback from his Sept. 11 injury some time this season. Rodgers was placed on injured reserve and the anticipated recovery time for a typical Achilles tear is 11 to 12 months.

“Everything says he shouldn’t be able to do this,” Saleh said in an interview with NFL Network. “Any medical professional, anyone who’s been through an Achilles injury, they’re all saying there’s no way. But don’t tell him that. Like I said, the more you doubt him and the more you doubt whether or not he’s able to do it, I think it just fuels him. I mean, if I was going to bet — even though gambling is illegal for employees — I would bet on him, not against him.”

Rodgers is walking without crutches and credits the unique “speed bridge” operation he had for his relatively rapid progress. Saleh said he can see and hear the belief from Rodgers that he’ll be back, to the extent that he’s a believer too.

“I’m one of those guys searching, like, ‘Is he supposed to do this?’ ” Saleh said. “I’ve coached Richard Sherman, who was coming off his Achilles. I’ve got friends who have had Achilles injuries, and what he’s doing, according to them, is absolutely ridiculous. For him to be walking already, I wouldn’t put anything past him. He is a big believer in manifestation. You are who you think you are, and you become what you think about. He is willing himself to return faster than what you’re supposed to be.

“I think he’s fueled by doubt — I don’t think, I know — he’s fueled by doubt. The more you doubt him, the more fuel he has. He’s on a mission. There’s one thing I’ve learned about him, in my very short time with him, is that when he’s got something on his mind and he wants to prove something, he’s going to prove it. So, a lot of people can doubt him, but I’m not doubting him. We’re leaving the door open for him but it’s amazing to see how hard he’s been working and the intent at which he’s been doing it.”

Rodgers said he was informed he would need three months post-surgery for the Achilles to potentially be considered fully healed, which would put him at a Week 15 return just after his 40th birthday (Dec. 2) to face the Miami Dolphins on Dec. 17.

The Jets (3-3) would have three games remaining after the date in Miami if Rodgers is able to hit that timeline, but it’s less likely he would risk an early return from a major injury and surgery if the team falls out of the playoff picture by December.

–Field Level Media

Oct 1, 2023; East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA; New York Jets quarterback Aaron Rodgers (8) talks with a member of the Jets staff before the game against the Kansas City Chiefs at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

Aaron Rodgers ‘proud’ of Zach Wilson, says rehab ahead of schedule

New York Jets quarterback Aaron Rodgers praised the growth of teammate Zach Wilson after his confident performance in Sunday night’s game, while saying he is already “ahead of my normal protocols” in his injury rehab process.

The four-time NFL Most Valuable Player had spent a few weeks away from the Jets’ facility while rehabbing after Achilles surgery, but he rejoined the team Saturday night at their hotel.

In his weekly appearance on “The Pat McAfee Show” Tuesday, Rodgers said he and Wilson speak almost every day.

“We’re very close, and I love him. I care about him. I’m always checking in on him, seeing how he’s doing,” Rodgers said. “I think you’ve seen a lot of great leadership growth from him. I think our society at times wants to cancel people, or label people and keep that label on him, regardless of any self-growth, or experience that changes your perspective on life. He’s been labeled a certain way by people, so when people see this other side, they don’t know what to think or how to react.

“But Zach’s a young kid. He’s learning, he’s growing. He’s on his own path, his journey. Very proud of the leadership that he showed. I’m proud of the way he played.”

Rodgers’ return to the team coincided with Wilson’s best performance of the season, and perhaps as an NFL player. After a slow start Sunday night against the Kansas City Chiefs, Wilson wound up completing 28 of 39 passes for 245 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions. He ran in a two-point conversion play to tie the game before the Chiefs won 23-20.

“You know, I don’t need to pull him aside and tell him anything special,” Rodgers said. “There wasn’t some kind of pep talk that I gave him that made him play better. I felt like the plan was a good plan. He got into a rhythm there in the second quarter. Made a bunch of really great throws. I thought the drive coming out of halftime was really fantastic. Started off the second half with a back-shoulder seam route to (Tyler Conklin) and then hit a lot of other good throws on the drive. Hit his favorite play down in the red zone to Allen (Lazard) for a touchdown. Then ran QB draw. Had a great scramble to get in the end zone and get us tied. That thing, the whole place changed after that. I mean, it was pretty electric.”

Rodgers also reiterated his goal of returning to the playing field before season’s end.

“It’s pretty obvious I’m well ahead of my normal protocols when it comes to rehab for this kind of thing, but that was always what my mindset was,” he said. “… Being as smart as possible not trying to stress the Achilles, but stressing the Achilles in a way that allows me to do movement quicker and speed up whatever timeline that has been the standard for this type of injury.”

Rodgers not only tore his Achilles tendon on the fourth play of the season, but injured the deltoid muscle in his ankle as well.

“There’s nothing normal about how I’m attacking this rehab,” Rodgers said. “The common practice is about six weeks in a boot, and I was in a shoe in 13 days.

“This is just my mindset. I believe in the power of intention. I believe in prayer. I believe in your mental status and the power of will. I believe in making room for the miraculous to happen.”

–Field Level Media

Buffalo Bills Tre'Davious White looks at the video display screen showing the play as his team takes on the Cincinnati Bengals at home in Orchard Park on Jan. 22. The Bills lost 27-10 in their playoff game.Buffalo Bills Tredavious White

Bills CB Tre’Davious White (torn Achilles) done for year

Star cornerback Tre’Davious White suffered a torn right Achilles and will miss the rest of the season, the Buffalo Bills confirmed Monday.

White had to be carted off the field late in the third quarter of the Bills’ 48-20 victory over the visiting Miami Dolphins on Sunday.

White dropped back in coverage when Miami quarterback Tua Tagovailoa was sacked with 39 seconds left in the third and was shown putting no pressure on his right leg as the play developed.

No one had made contact with White, who fell to the turf in pain and then threw his helmet in frustration.

White, 28, also tore his ACL during the 2021 season in a Thanksgiving victory over the New Orleans Saints. He made his return to the field on Thanksgiving Day in 2022 and played six regular-season games last year.

A Pro Bowl and All-Pro selection in 2019 and 2020, White has 18 interceptions and 68 pass breakups in 82 career games (all starts) since Buffalo drafted him in the first round (No. 27 overall) of the 2017 draft. He had 12 tackles, two pass breakups and one interception in four games this year.

–Field Level Media

Sep 11, 2023; East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA; New York Jets quarterback Aaron Rodgers (8) is injured while being sacked by Buffalo Bills defensive end Leonard Floyd (56) during the first half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

MRI confirms torn Achilles for Jets QB Aaron Rodgers

An MRI performed Tuesday morning confirmed that New York Jets quarterback Aaron Rodgers sustained a torn Achilles in his debut with the team Monday night and will be out for the season.

NFL Network said the injury is a complete tear of his left Achilles. Rodgers suffered the injury on the fourth play of his first drive in a Jets uniform when he was sacked by the Buffalo Bills’ Leonard Floyd.

“Not the way any of us wanted it to go, but we know the commitment you’ve made to this team will continue to impact us moving forward,” the Jets posted on their official Twitter account, accompanying a photo of Rodgers.

With Rodgers out, the Jets will turn to Zach Wilson as the No. 1 quarterback. The No. 2 overall pick of the 2021 NFL Draft, Wilson was 8-14-0 as a starter with the Jets, who acquired Rodgers in an offseason trade with the Green Bay Packers.

The hope was Wilson could learn under Rodgers, a four-time league Most Valuable Player, from the sidelines this season.

But with the season over for the 39-year-old Rodgers — and whether he returns next season in doubt — the Jets are Wilson’s team, and their Super Bowl dreams took a huge hit.

The Jets initially deemed Rodgers questionable to return before downgrading him to out for the night during the second quarter. X-rays on Rodgers’ left ankle were negative, but reports began to surface during the game that the Achilles was the focus of the injury.

Floyd beat Jets left tackle Duane Brown and got to Rodgers untouched for a 10-yard sack with 11:15 left in the first quarter.

Rodgers initially stood up before sitting back on the turf, with trainers running out to check on him.

A cart was waiting by the team’s medical tent while Rodgers was being examined. He eventually got on the cart but then stepped off and walked into the locker room.

Rodgers was wearing a boot on his left foot when he went for X-rays and returned to the locker room.

–Field Level Media

Jacksonville Jaguars linebacker Ventrell Miller (51) sprints during the third and final day of a mandatory minicamp Monday, June 12, 2023 at TIAA Bank Field in Jacksonville, Fla.

Jaguars rookie LB Ventrell Miller (Achilles) out for season

Jacksonville Jaguars rookie linebacker Ventrell Miller will miss the upcoming season with an Achilles injury.

Coach Doug Pederson confirmed Monday that the fourth-round pick was hurt in Saturday’s preseason finale against the Miami Dolphins.

Miller, 24, registered nine tackles and two sacks in three preseason games.

In four seasons with the Florida Gators (2018-21), Miller collected 7.5 sacks, 124 tackles and one interception.

Miller was listed on the Jaguars’ official depth chart behind Foyesade Oluokun and Shaquille Quarterman.

–Field Level Media

Oct 16, 2022; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Philadelphia Eagles linebacker Shaun Bradley (54) reacts against the Dallas Cowboys during the second quarter at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Eagles’ special teamer Shaun Bradley (leg) out for season

Philadelphia Eagles linebacker and special teams standout Shaun Bradley will miss the 2023 season, he confirmed Sunday on social media.

He sustained a lower leg injury on Saturday in Philadelphia’s preseason loss to the Baltimore Ravens, and multiple outlets reported he sustained a torn Achilles.

“(N)ot how I wanted the season to end for me,” he posted to Instagram, continuing, “I will be back better than i ever was … i can promise that.”

Bradley, who played collegiately at Temple, was taken by the Eagles in the sixth round of the 2020 NFL Draft. He’s appeared in 45 games (one start) and has 45 tackles. He’s played 878 snaps on special teams, including 80 percent of all special teams plays in 2022.

The 26-year-old New Jersey native was carted off and into the locker room Saturday in the 20-19 loss.

–Field Level Media

Oct 2, 2022; Arlington, Texas, USA; Washington Commanders tight end Armani Rogers (88) warms up before the game between the Dallas Cowboys and the Washington Commanders AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Commanders TE Armani Rogers (Achilles) out indefinitely

Washington Commanders tight end Armani Rogers is sidelined indefinitely with an Achilles injury.

Coach Ron Rivera said Rogers sustained the non-contact injury while running during an OTA session Tuesday.

NFL Network reported that an MRI confirmed an Achilles tear, and Rogers plans to have surgery next week.

“It’s a blow,” Rivera said Wednesday. “The young man really progressed well for us last year.”

Rogers, 25, appeared in 11 games (three starts) and caught five passes for 64 yards last season.

He was undrafted in 2022 after playing five seasons of college football at UNLV (2017-19) and Ohio (2020-21).

The Commanders have tight ends Logan Thomas, John Bates, Cole Turner and Curtis Hodges on the roster.

–Field Level Media

Oct 30, 2022; London, United Kingdom, Jacksonville Jaguars defensive end Dawuane Smoot (91) reacts affecter sacking Denver Broncos quarterback Russell Wilson (3) (not pictured) in the third quarter during an NFL International Series game at Wembley Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Jaguars fear torn Achilles for DL Dawuane Smoot

Jacksonville Jaguars defensive lineman Dawuane Smoot is having an MRI Friday to determine the extent of an Achilles injury, NFL Network reported.

The team fears Smoot sustained a season-ending right Achilles tear late in Thursday night’s 19-3 victory against the New York Jets. He stumbled attempting to rush the passer and immediately grabbed at his right ankle area.

Smoot, 27, has registered five sacks and 12 quarterback hits and 21 tackles in 15 games this season, his sixth with the Jaguars.

The 2017 third-round pick has 22.5 sacks, 60 QB hits, four forced fumbles and 123 tackles in 87 games (17 starts) for Jacksonville.

–Field Level Media