Broncos' Ja'wuan James Reportedly Suffers Achilles Injury; Could End Season

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured Columnist IVMay 4, 2021

DENVER, CO - December 1: Denver Broncos offensive tackle Ja'Wuan James (70) as the Denver Broncos take on the Los Angeles Chargers at Empower Field at Mile High in  Denver, Colorado on December 1, 2019. (Photo by Joe Amon/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images)"n
Joe Amon/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images

Denver Broncos offensive tackle Ja'Wuan James' 2021 season is reportedly over before it started.

According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, James suffered a torn Achilles during a workout away from the team facility on Tuesday.

"James' $10 million salary for the upcoming season now is in jeopardy being that Denver no longer is obligated to pay him with him working out off site," Schefter wrote.

Schefter provided more details:

Adam Schefter @AdamSchefter

Broncos' OT Ja'Wuan James’ contract tolled last year, so he was playing under his 2020 contract this year, which had $10 million guaranteed for skill and injury, and another $10 million in 2021. So it’s a $20 million potential torn Achilles injury today. https://t.co/jj10uOm298

NFL Network's Mike Garafolo reported there's hope James won't miss the entire season with the injury.

James Palmer of NFL Network noted James was expected to be the Broncos' starting right tackle during the upcoming season even though he has played just 63 snaps over the past two years.

Denver signed the Tennessee product to a four-year, $51 million contract prior to the 2019 campaign after he played his first five seasons with the Miami Dolphins. However, he played just three games in 2019 and opted out of the 2020 season amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

James also played just seven games in 2015 and eight games in 2017 when he was a member of the Dolphins.

Miami selected him with a first-round pick in 2014, and he was a key part of its offensive line when he was healthy. Pro Football Focus gave him an overall player grade of 72.4 during the 2018 season, which was his last healthy one.

Look for the Broncos to turn toward Quinn Bailey at right tackle following this setback.