On Monday, however, Sanders revealed he had a second ankle surgery this offseason — one that has been bothering him for quite some time.
Just one month after his Achilles surgery, Sanders underwent a “tightrope” surgery on his right ankle. That injury, he said, had been impacting him for nearly two seasons.
“My (right) ankle gave me problems all last year,’’ Sanders said, via 9News. “I came to camp last year thinking, “How to hell am I going to get through this season?’’
Sanders recorded 868 yards and four touchdowns on 71 receptions last season before his injury sidelined him for their remaining four games. He first injured his right ankle in October 2017, and missed four games because of it.
It was that injury, he believes, that caused him to tear his Achilles in his other ankle. Once fellow wide receiver Demariyus Thomas was traded last season, more workload was placed on the 32-year-old — and his ankle still wasn’t fully healed.
“I feel like that was kind of the reason I tore my Achilles,” Sanders said, via 9News.
Yet it wasn’t the Achilles injury that caused him the most pain, he said. In fact, it was just the opposite.
“The tightrope was more painful (than) the Achilles (surgery),’’ Sanders said, via 9News.
Sanders finally feels healthy again
Now, though, Broncos coach Vic Fangio said Sanders appears to be back to normal. He’s participating in practice at training camp, and even expertly hauled in a deep ball from Joe Flacco on Monday.
His reps are “going up and up every day,” Fangio said Monday, and the first year head coach even expects him to play at some point this preseason.
“I thought he would make it back quicker than most, and he has,” Fangio said, via the Broncos. “He looks fine. I’ve asked the guys that have been here in the past to compare him to what he’s been in the past ... and they don’t see any difference right now.”
Sanders is right with Fangio. After years of pain in his ankles, the former third-round draft pick finally feels healthy again.
“I feel good now that both of them have been taken care of,’’ Sanders said, via 9News. “I feel like I’m back to myself, finally.’’
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