Report: Elvis Dumervil to have surgery

Updated: August 8, 2010, 9:52 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

Denver Broncos pass-rusher Elvis Dumervil will undergo surgery Tuesday to repair a torn pectoral muscle. The surgery could mean the end to Dumervil's season if doctors find the damage that is expected, according to The Denver Post.

Broncos head team physician Ted Schlegel is scheduled to perform the surgery, according to the Post. Dumervil visited Dr. Michael Dillingham -- who heads the medical team for both the San Francisco 49ers and San Francisco Giants -- in San Francisco on Friday to get a second opinion on the surgical diagnosis.

Dumervil then returned to Denver and the surgery was scheduled.

The damage to the pectoral muscle will be examined in the surgery and the pectoral tendon will be re-attached. Normally, the recovery time is four to five months for such an injury.

Dumervil was hurt at practice Wednesday night in a one-on-one passing drill, and walked off the field clutching his right arm.

The 26-year-old Dumervil led the league with 17 sacks in 2009 and parlayed his breakout season into a five-year, $58.332 million extension last month that included $43.168 million in guarantees against injury, a record for a player at his position.

Without Dumervil, the Broncos lack a bona fide pass-rusher. Defensive lineman Darrell Reid had four sacks last year, the most of any other returning Broncos player. But he's sidelined with a knee ailment and hasn't participated in training camp.

The other outside linebackers, former first-round picks Robert Ayers and Jarvis Moss, didn't have a sack last year. Mario Haggan played on the other side of Dumervil in '09, but was moved into the middle during training camp. He may just be moved back to the outside in light of Dumervil's injury.

The Broncos will stick to their 3-4 scheme but are considering sprinkling in some of their old 4-3 alignments.

Dumervil prospered last season in the Broncos' new defensive look that converted him from a classic 4-3 defensive end into a stand-up outside linebacker in the 3-4, which employs three down linemen and four linebackers.

Despite his diminutive stature -- 5-foot-11 and 248 pounds -- Dumervil's extraordinarily long arms and low center of gravity make him difficult to defend as he has built-in leverage against almost anybody he faces.

He has 43 sacks since being drafted in the fourth round out of the University of Louisville in 2006.

Training camp has certainly gotten off to a bad start for Denver. The Broncos have been hit by more than a dozen injuries so far.

The Broncos ensured themselves that they wouldn't lose another player to injury Sunday by canceling their practice.

Their next workout isn't until Tuesday.

Top draft pick Demaryius Thomas apparently injured his left foot Saturday night -- the same one he broke in predraft workouts -- and underwent further medical tests Sunday.

The Broncos were concerned initially because it was the same foot Thomas fractured in March. But a person with knowledge of the diagnosis told The Associated Press on Sunday afternoon that Thomas wasn't seriously injured and that he won't be out long-term.

The person spoke on the condition of anonymity because the team hadn't publicly addressed the issue.

It's the first big break the Broncos have caught since they lost their top two tailbacks on the first day of training camp.

Fellow rookie receiver Eric Decker also suffered an injury to his left foot or ankle at the workout at Invesco Field on Saturday night that was attended by 20,782 fans, the largest crowd ever to watch a Broncos practice.

Thomas came off the field after landing awkwardly when he caught a short touchdown pass over the middle. He was in the midst of his third straight spectacular practice when he went down.

"We saw the last couple days what we thought we saw on film and I think the game is starting to slow down for him," coach Josh McDaniels said. "Again, he's still a rookie, he still made, I would say, plenty of mistakes this evening but you know, God gave him some things that he uses to his advantage and he does a great job of that."

The Broncos needed a big receiver after trading away Pro Bowler Brandon Marshall to the Miami Dolphins, and they got two in the draft in Thomas and Decker, a third-rounder from Minnesota.

Although Thomas played in Georgia Tech's triple-option offense, he appears way ahead of Decker, whose 2009 season was cut short when he tore a ligament in his left foot that required surgery and sidelined him for all of Denver's offseason practices.

In his last three practices, Thomas has made a bunch of big plays and touchdowns, often reaching over defensive backs to snare passes.

"He's 6-3, 228 pounds, you know? And he can run," McDaniels said. "Those kinds of plays are rare to make in this league and if you're fortunate enough to have a player that can do some of those things, I think it makes your football team better."

Although the Broncos are banged up at receiver and running back -- even LenDale White [ankle] got hurt two days after being signed following injuries to Knowshon Moreno [hamstring] and Correll Buckhalter [back], their quarterback play has been a highlight of camp.

Incumbent starter Kyle Orton is playing with a precision not seen last year, when he dealt with injuries to both ankles, messing up his throwing mechanics. And newcomers Brady Quinn and Tim Tebow, their other first-round pick, have made their share of big plays so far.

All of them looked sharp Saturday night.

Well, Tebow didn't look so good when he took his helmet off to sign autographs.

In a rookie ritual, Tebow's head was shaved by linebacker Wesley Woodyard so that he looked like a friar. Other rookies had half their heads shaved or bald stripes carved into their long locks.

"I think the rookies all had a good time with it," Tebow said, "and I know the veterans really enjoyed it."

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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