During offseason practices, plenty of the offense and defense for the coming season are installed. So it’s important for the players to be getting the reps, even without pads or, in theory, contact.
In Denver, three key members of the offense (two receivers, one lineman) have foot injuries, and thus aren’t able to contribute.
“[W]e’ve got a lot of them right now,” coach Josh McDaniels said in quotes distributed by the team. “Demaryius [Thomas], Ryan Harris, Eric [Decker], so we’re going to be careful. At this point we’re going to err on the side of being real careful and not put them in a situation where [it's] the last day of minicamp on June 13th and all of the sudden we have a foot injury. If there’s a guy who is borderline ready and not ready, we’re not going to push it and really we’ve told all the players August is the time we want you to be ready to go. If they are ready I think we’ll be excited to see them out there. They’re all taking a bunch of mental reps. They’re all in the film session and they’re all seeing the things were doing and getting all the information but hopefully everybody will be ready by August.”
For Thomas, a first-round pick and the first wideout taken in the draft, the foot problem created a mini Twitter controversy on Wednesday. As explained by Mike Klis of the Denver Post, Thomas tweeted that he was heading for X-rays, and that the situation was “sad.” The messages then disappeared.
Per Klis, a source said on the matter, “I can assure you 100 percent that there was
nothing ‘sad’ about his recent X-rays.”
Thomas missed much of the pre-draft buildup due to a broken metatarsal that he suffered while working out. He was able to perform for scouts before the draft, and the effort helped make him the 22nd overall pick.
As McDaniels points out, August is the key time frame. If Thomas isn’t available then — and if Dez Bryant continues to shine (when not puking his guts up) in Dallas — folks in Denver could begin to get nervous about whether they made the right decision.