Butt opened the season on the Broncos' Non-Football Injury list while still recovering from an ACL tear he suffered in January during Michigan's bowl game. The tight end was recently cleared to practice with the Broncos, but after experiencing recurring soreness in the knee, the organization decided it was best to hold him out for the entire 2017 campaign. Given the severity of Butt's injury, the Broncos were never expecting him to contribute much as a rookie, but with another offseason to heal up, he could be ready to challenge for a meaningful role in the pass game in 2018.
Butt (knee) is still experiencing soreness in his surgically repaired knee, Nicki Jhabvala of The Denver Post reports.
Butt has been dealing with the issue since resuming practice in mid-October and doesn't seem all that close to being 100 percent. The Broncos have until Monday to activate the rookie tight end or he will remain on the Non-Football Injury list for the remainder of the season. The team apparently still hopes the 22-year-old can contribute this season, but it seems unlikely he'll be a major contributor with the lingering knee soreness, even if he is activated.
Butt was forced out of last week's practice sessions due renewed soreness in his surgically repaired knee, but it appears the Michigan product is nearing a return to full health. Before throwing him in the line of duty, it'll be important for Butt to hold up well during practice and prove he can play without any limitations. The rookie tight end is still within the 21-day practice evaluation period for players who begin the season on the Non-Football Injury list.
Butt returned to practice last Wednesday, opening a 21-day window during which the Broncos have to decide if he'll be activated to the 53-man roster or placed on injured reserve for the rest of the season. His absence from Wednesday's practice suggests the latter is a real possibility, though the team probably won't be in any rush to make a decision. Coming off a torn ACL suffered less than 10 months ago, Butt likely will handle a limited role if he's available at any point this season. The injury played a major role in his fall to the fifth round of the 2017 draft.
Head coach Vance Joseph said Butt (knee) will return to practice Wednesday, Nicki Jhabvala of the Denver Post reports.
Butt, who remains on the reserve/non-football injury list, became eligible to return to practice Monday. The Broncos now have three weeks to add him to the active roster or else the rookie tight end will move to injured reserve.