ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) — The injury-riddled Denver Broncos were awarded running back Andre Brown of the New York Giants and offensive lineman Chris Clark of the Minnesota Vikings off waivers on Sunday.
To make room on the roster, the Broncos waived linebacker Baraka Atkins and running back Bruce Hall.
In Brown, the Broncos essentially replaced a player who just ruptured an Achilles’ tendon (LenDale White) with one who was felled by the same injury a year ago.
At 6-feet and 224 pounds, Brown becomes the Broncos’ biggest back. But he’s recovering from a turf toe injury after gaining 95 yards on 21 carries in the preseason to go with 120 yards on seven kickoff returns and likely won’t be ready when the Broncos open their season Sunday at Jacksonville.
The Broncos have been hurting at tailback ever since Knowshon Moreno (hamstring) and Correll Buckhalter (back) were injured an hour into the first practice of training camp.
White was signed shortly afterward and sprained an ankle on his first full day of practice, then was lost for the season when he ruptured his right Achilles’ tendon in the preseason finale at Minnesota last week.
Brown was a fourth-round selection out of North Carolina State last year after impressing scouts at the NFL combine with his speed. But his injury during camp that sidelined him all of last year means he’ll have to focus on being a power back — just what the Broncos are looking for.
Brown had 3,511 all-purpose yards and 22 touchdowns in college.
The Broncos also are banged up along the offensive line, where right tackle Ryan Harris (ankle) was injured in the preseason finale and All-Pro left tackle Ryan Clady is still feeling his way back from a torn left patellar tendon, which popped while he was playing a pickup basketball game in April.
Clark spend the last two years on the Vikings’ practice squad after going undrafted out of Southern Miss, where he started the final 39 games of his college career.
The Broncos also signed five players to their practice squad: linebackers Kevin Alexander and Worrell Williams, wide receiver Britt Davis, tight end Riar Geer and safety Kyle McCarthy. Williams is the brother of Broncos star inside linebacker D.J. Williams.