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Broncos' Courtland Sutton returns from shoulder injury

Pro Bowler's return should boost offense
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Posted at 9:29 AM, Sep 20, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-20 11:42:57-04

DENVER -- Road success requires a will of steel. But road success without a top receiver is no way face the Steelers.

The Broncos will not have to endure the later indignity.

Courtland Sutton will make his season debut after missing the opener with a sprained AC joint in his right shoulder. Sutton made progress this week, taking the decision to Sunday. The Pro Bowler convinced the training staff and coach Vic Fangio he was healed enough to play.

Sutton injured his shoulder 10 days ago making a leaping catch in practice, while landing awkwardly on his right hand, jamming his shoulder. He emerged as the Broncos' best offensive player last season and a safety net for Drew Lock, catching 72 passes for 1,112 yards and six touchdowns.

With Sutton back, the Broncos will have a more diverse passing attack with rookie Jerry Jeudy, veteran Tim Patrick and slot receiver K.J. Hamler, who is making his pro debut after missing last week with a sore hamstring. Tight end Noah Fant emerged as the Broncos' top target, hauling in five passes for 81 yards. However, the Broncos forgot about in the second half as he did not post another reception.

The Broncos will face a flurry of pressure from the Steelers from T.J. Watt and Bud Dupree. They look to attack the quarterback, and do not shy away for blitzes. However, Broncos quarterback Drew Lock has only been sacked five time in his six starts, the fewest in the NFL over the past six games dating to last season.

The challenge for the Broncos' offense is real. But having Sutton back gives Lock a better chance of pulling off the upset.

The Broncos' inactives for the game are receiver Tyrie Cleveland (hip), running back Phillip Lindsay, expected to miss one more week with his turf toe injury, Mark Barron (hamstring), Netane Muti, Albert Okwuegbunam, Anthony Chickillo and McTelvin Agim.

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