The Denver Broncos reportedly have a serious injury on their hands. According to Adam Schefter of ESPN, left tackle Ryan Clady has tore his ACL and will likely miss the entire 2015-16 season. Clady has been a stalwart for Denver since being drafted out of Boise State in the first round back in 2008.
The 28-year-old was protection the blindside of quarterback/immobile statue Peyton Manning, so this has major ramifications for Denver. While you certainly have to feel for Clady and wish him nothing but the speediest of recoveries, we must also see this from the perspective of the Kansas City Chiefs.
With Clady injured, the Broncos will likely have to install Chris Clark at left tackle, with rookie Ty Sambrailo at right tackle. On the inside, the Broncos will start former All-Pro Louis Vasquez along with Geno Gradkowski and Shelley Smith. It goes without saying that this line isn’t going to remind anyone of the Dallas Cowboys.
Tamba Hali will be matched up on Clark, while Justin Houston will face Sambrailo. Considering Manning isn’t much for getting out of the pocket, this could be a recipe for success in Kansas City. It should be mentioned that head coach Gary Kubiak has a very bootleg and play-action heavy offense, something he learned under former Broncos head coach Mike Shanahan. With these injuries, expect plenty of short passes to C.J. Anderson and play-action fakes to slow the defense.
This won’t be the first time that Clady has been out for an extended period of time. Clady missed a majority of the 2013 campaign with a foot injury and the Broncos went to the Super Bowl. Of course, Manning had Julius Thomas and Wes Welker that season, and threw for 56 touchdowns. It’s not likely he will come close to that production.