For the second straight year, Denver Broncos wide receiver Tim Patrick will have to sit an entire season.
The 29-year-old tore an Achilles during practice this week. Last year, a torn ACL sidelined him for the 2022 season.
Broncos coach Sean Payton confirmed the season-ending injury Tuesday. Patrick was carted off the field and later underwent an MRI that confirmed the tear. The injury typically requires a minimum of eight months recovery time.
“He has an Achilles tear. I spoke to him last night. Of course, he’s disappointed,” Payton said. “My understanding is almost a year ago to the day [he suffered a season-ending knee injury]. I think the hard thing — and I said this yesterday — is for a player to spend most of his offseason rehabbing, and then, all of a sudden, hit another roadblock. He sounded better last night.
“He’s tough-minded, and he’s a really good leader. The good news is it’s a clean injury, and there’s a better than likely 100% recovery. It’s pretty clean, relative to the type of surgery he’s going to have. I don’t have a date yet as to when that will take place, but that’s where we are at there.”
Patrick’s injury happened the same day the Broncos’ wide receiver corps experienced another significant loss. KJ Hamler took to social media to announce that he has been diagnosed with a “mild heart irritation, called pericarditis.”
The 24-year-old vowed to make a comeback.
“I will be back on the field — better and stronger than ever — as soon as possible this season!” Hamler wrote on social media. “I feel great physically and this is very frustrating for me to deal with. I know most of you have heard or know of my story and these past few years what I’ve been going through on and off the field.
“I’ll get past this just like everything else on this journey! I will continue to elevate. I forever stand on business.”
On Monday, Patrick went to the ground during a 7-on-7 drill. It was a non-contact injury. The last time Patrick was healthy enough to play a full NFL season, his five touchdown catches led the team.
Patrick’s teammates lauded his competitive spirit.
“Many people can’t compete like him,” All-Pro cornerback Patrick Surtain II said.
Payton also mentioned the level of respect Patrick has from the team and said it was difficult to see him suffer another season-ending injury.
“Oh my gosh, I think especially with a player like him … who’s so well respected,” Payton said.
Over the past three seasons, the Broncos have managed to have wide receivers Courtland Sutton, Jerry Jeudy, Hamler and Patrick on the football field together for just two games.