Nathaniel Hackett: Someone has to step up with Tim Patrick out

Nathaniel Hackett: Someone has to step up with Tim Patrick out

The Broncos offense suffered a pair of blows this week when wide receiver Tim Patrick and running back Damarea Crockett tore their ACLs.

Crockett was on the lower rungs of the depth chart, but Patrick was slated to be one of the team’s top three wideouts this season so his loss leaves a big hole in the offense. KJ Hamler, Kendall Hinton, Seth Williams, and Travis Fulgham are some of the wideouts who will be bidding for more work in his absence and the team could also turn to tight ends Albert Okwuegbunam and Greg Dulcich to fill the void left by the 6-foot-4 wideout.

How all of that shakes out remains to be seen, but head coach Nathaniel Hackett knows that someone is going to have to take advantage of the chance provided by Patrick’s injury.

“Flipping it, obviously very upset [Patrick’s] not here, but now here’s an opportunity for somebody to step up,” Hackett said, via the team’s website. “Especially in the red zone, to have the opportunity to make some touchdowns, utilize some different people, that’s what we’re going to have to do. And in that area, you always want everybody to have to cover the whole field . . . and all the skill guys. It’ll be exciting to see who is going to step up. Somebody’s going to have to.”

Quarterback Russell Wilson‘s arrival in Denver has raised the expectations for the team’s offense this season. Patrick’s loss doesn’t dim them on its own, but a failure to adequately replace his production would lower the ceiling for the Broncos.