Mark J. Rebilas/USA TODAY Sports

Heading Into Week 2, The Denver Broncos Get Three Players Back At Practice

Three Broncos who missed opening night are back at practice this week.

The Denver Broncos defeated the Carolina Panthers in Week 1, 21-20. They did so without three crucial role players. 

Receiver Bennie Fowler (elbow), tight end Jeff Heuerman (ankle) and offensive lineman Ty Sambrailo (elbow) were all forced to miss the season opener. However, each player returned to practice on Monday. 

A the No. 2 TE, Heuerman has to make up for lost time. He spent much of training camp and the preseason banged up. In his stead, John Phillips played well on Thursday, seeing six offensive snaps behind Virgil Green With the question marks surrounding Demaryius Thomas' health, the Broncos need as much help as they can get at the wide receiver position. Fowler is not only a big, physical threat on the outside, he's also one of the Broncos better special teams players. 

Thomas is expected to practice on Wednesday and should be good to go for Denver's Week 2 bout with the Indianapolis Colts.

Sambrailo opened up camp as the starting right guard, but his injury gave way to Michael Schofield, who seems to have a stranglehold on the position, so long as he continues to play well. However, head coach Gary Kubiak said Monday that although Schofield has earned the right to start at RG, there will be intense competition on the offensive line. 

As defending World Champions, the Broncos are one of the NFL's youngest teams. The coaches have managed to make their team's youth movement a strength, rather than a weakness. 

At this stage, these three young Broncos, two of whom were high-round draft picks in 2015, might only be depth players, but if Denver proved anything in 2015, it's that it takes elite depth to go all the way. 

Chad Jensen is the Publisher of Mile High Huddle. You can find him on Twitter @ChadNJensen.

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