DENVER, CO – OCTOBER 4: Quarterback Teddy Bridgewater #5 of the Minnesota Vikings looks to avoid defensive end Vance Walker #96 of the Denver Broncos during a game at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on October 4, 2015 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

The Denver Broncos’ defense was absolutely sensational in 2015, as it led them — basically carried them — to a Super Bowl victory, and an incredible postseason performance.

But, their defense took a hit on paper over the offseason with starting defensive end Malik Jackson signing a massive contract with the Jacksonville Jaguars, and now, they’ve lost Jackson’s replacement.

The Broncos announced that 29-year-old defensive end Vance Walker suffered a torn ACL during the team’s practice on Monday, and is expected to miss the 2016 season:

A Monday afternoon MRI examination revealed that Walker suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee during that morning’s practice.

Walker is expected to miss the 2016 season. The injury is a crushing blow for the eight-year veteran, who had moved onto the first team and was holding down a starting spot as he replaced free-agent departure Malik Jackson in the starting lineup.

The 6’2″, 305-pounder appeared in 15 games — starting four — for Denver in 2015, and was credited with 33 tackles and two sacks.

With Walker out, free-agent signing Jared Crick (a starter for Houston the past two seasons) and second-round pick Adam Gotsis figure to fight for the starting job.

So, this is a big blow to the Broncos’ defense, but they’re still loaded and should be able to survive this loss.


About Matt Clapp

Matt is an editor at The Comeback. He attended Colorado State University, wishes he was Saved by the Bell's Zack Morris, and idolizes Larry David. And loves pizza and dogs because obviously.

He can be followed on Twitter at @Matt2Clapp (also @TheBlogfines for Cubs/MLB tweets and @DaBearNecess for Bears/NFL tweets), and can be reached by email at