Vance Walker Injury: Updates on Broncos DE's Knee and Recovery

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured Columnist

Denver Broncos defensive tackle Vance Walker (96) looks on at the team's NFL football training camp Friday, July 31, 2015, in Englewood, Colo. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
David Zalubowski/Associated Press

The Denver Broncos lost defensive end Vance Walker for the 2016 campaign on Aug. 15 because of an ACL injury. He would undergo surgery on Wednesday. 

Continue for updates.

Walker Shares Instagram Image After Surgery

Wednesday, Sept. 14

Walker Comments on ACL Injury

Wednesday, Aug. 31

Walker took to Instagram to express his thoughts on the injury and the Broncos organization:

As most of you guys know, I had a season ending injury a week ago. I tore my anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) along with some other things. Needless to say it has been the single most painful experience I've ever had to endure. With the pain of the injury not being so much physical, but more mental. I hadn't said much to all my fans and friends because of the hurt I was going through. The idea that a guy like myself, who's NEVER been hurt, has to sit out a season for that very reason. That after all the work I've done this off-season, I wont be out there with my team mates.... my friends. After alot of reflection and humbling in the past few days though, I realize I have SO much to be thankful for. Not even the fact that people would say ive been "blessed" up unto this point, but to me, its the fact I have been able to be a blessing for others. Thats all I ever wanted. Im thankful for all my fans and the people who took time out of their day, to worry and send well wishes to someone they've never met. Or my friends, who kept up and watched over me even if I only said a total of 5 sentences through out high school in Fort Mill. My point is that I appreciate each and every last one of you for your thoughts and prayers. I will be back. Stronger and more agile than ever. In body but more importantly in mind and spirit. If someone told me one of my biggest struggles would be an acl injury 10 years ago, I'd say that would be a blessing. There's so much going on in the world today, a football injury is really miniscule in the grand scheme of things. I just ask that we all pray and continue to help everyone else who are less fortunate because to me, that is where it truly matters. I'll be just fine. Surgery in the next few weeks (which I'm not really looking forward to) and then it's all downhill. I'm in a much better place and I want you all to be as well. And of course... GO BRONCOS Much love and prayers to all -Vance

Walker Provided Broncos with Quality DL Depth

Last season was Walker's first with the Broncos, and he appeared in 15 contests, tallying 33 combined tackles and two sacks. He also played for the Atlanta Falcons from 2009 to 2012, the Oakland Raiders in 2013 and the Kansas City Chiefs in 2014.

The Georgia Tech product, who has 12 regular-season sacks in his career, finished with five combined tackles in three postseason games on the way to Denver's Super Bowl title last year.

According to Chris Wesseling of, "Walker was expected to nail down a starting role as the replacement for 2015 breakout star Malik Jackson." Jackson signed with the Jacksonville Jaguars in the offseason, while linebacker Danny Trevathan signed with the Chicago Bears.

Wesseling noted the Broncos will look to defensive end Jared Crick, as well as a combination of Billy Winn, Adam Gotsis, Sylvester Williams and Derek Wolfe, to shoulder the load along the defensive line.

"Gotsis offers the highest ceiling," according to Wesseling. The 2016 second-round pick impressed in Denver’s preseason opener with two quarterback hurries.

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Denver won the Super Bowl last season largely because of its strong defense, but Gotsis and the rest of the defensive line will have more pressure this year following Walker's injury.