If Emmanuel Sanders wants to remain the top wide receiver in the Broncos’ offense he’ll have to do it on two surgically repaired legs.
Sanders, 32, underwent surgery on a torn left Achilles in December. Now fully rehabbed from that injury, he revealed Monday he had a separate “tightrope” surgery on a lingering injury in his right ankle in January.
“The tightrope was more painful than the Achilles (surgery),’’ Sanders told 9News, which noted the procedure “involves drilling holes into the tibia and fibula at the ankle then using a heavy non-absorbable suture with metal buttons at both ends to hold the bones close together.”
The right ankle injury originally occurred early in the 2017 season. Sanders said treatment throughout that season and last never fully worked and that compensating for his bum right ankle ultimately led to his torn left Achilles.
“I feel good now that both of them have been taken care of,’’ he said. “I feel like I’m back to myself, finally.’’
Sanders finished with 71 catches for 868 yards and four touchdowns through 12 games last season and was the unquestioned top receiving option in Denver after Demaryius Thomas was traded in October.
This my golden year. I gotta show out. pic.twitter.com/kHCg4hwN5y
— Emmanuel Sanders (@ESanders_10) August 13, 2019
Now entering his 10th season in the NFL, Sanders is trying to hold off second-year receiver Courtland Sutton for WR1 honors.
The two SMU products had a brief scuffle at practice last week but Sanders told reporters the next day it was a “miscommunication.”
Emmanuel Sanders and Courtland Sutton addresss yesterday’s events. pic.twitter.com/jM4xFmznrl
— Ryan Koenigsberg (@RyanKoenigsberg) August 6, 2019
“Obviously, we’re family,” Sanders said. “We went to the same school, grew up in the same area. It’s a miscommunication and that’s just what it is. At the end of the day, we’re back on the same page trying to be the best receivers in the world.”
Broncos head coach Vic Fangio told reporters Monday he expects Sanders to play in the preseason at some point.