Denver Broncos won’t unleash Randy Gregory until September

Denver Broncos, Randy Gregory - Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports
Denver Broncos, Randy Gregory - Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports /

The Denver Broncos have a plan for Randy Gregory, and it doesn’t involve him risking further injury anytime before the regular season.

Despite signing him to a five-year, $70 million deal, the Denver Broncos are in no rush to get Randy Gregory out onto the field.

Nor should they be.

According to Mike Klis of 9News in Denver, the good news is that Gregory’s shoulder is “fully mended” after a procedure earlier in the offseason.

"The Denver Broncos seem pleased with the recovery new edge rusher Randy Gregory has made from shoulder surgery.His right shoulder is fully mended four months out from surgery. He’s been running and lifting weights, and he’s been doing these workouts during the 5 ½-week break between the final day of minicamp in mid-June and the opening of training camp on July 27.Mike Klis"

When the Denver Broncos open training camp in two weeks, however, Randy Gregory will be a limited participant, if we see him in uniform at all.

And that’s not a bad thing.

The NFL regular season is a long, drawn-out gauntlet. Not that you should just save players and keep your best guys on ice all throughout the offseason, but the long-term risks of putting players healing from injuries out there during training camp and preseason action are simply not worth it.

Getting Randy Gregory ready for Week 1 against the Seattle Seahawks is the priority, and the Denver Broncos have every reason to keep him in the recovery process until that point.

Gregory is not a young, unproven player who needs to prove his worth. He’s not a superstar, but he is a big-money player who is expected to play a critical role on this team.

If his shoulder is healed up and needs extra time, hopefully we will see Gregory progress and do some work throughout training camp without risking any issues to that surgically repaired shoulder.

In the meantime, the Denver Broncos have no shortage of players to evaluate off the edge.

Other teams will be fascinated to see Malik Reed, arguably the Denver Broncos’ top trade candidate this offseason, get his shot opposite a healthy Bradley Chubb.

The Broncos will rotate in the likes of Baron Browning, who has moved to the edge full-time (and according to Klis added 10 pounds to his frame), as well as top draft choice Nik Bonitto.

By the time training camp rolls around, Jonathon Cooper should be healthy again.

Aaron Patrick will be ready for more reps.

Undrafted rookie Christopher Allen will get his shot.

It’s not that the Denver Broncos don’t need Randy Gregory, but there are other players who will get opportunities to prove why they should be in the rotation while he heals up.

Everyone knows what Gregory brings to the table so inserting him into the lineup is going to be a great bonus by the time the offseason is over.

The Denver Broncos desperately needed an influx of talent off the edge in 2022, and it now appears they have a desirable surplus at one of the game’s most valuable positions.