The Denver Broncos have brought back tight end Jeff Heuerman on a two-year $9 million deal despite an injury-hit career to date.
The 26-year-old Ohio State alum was the Broncos’ starting tight end in 2018, catching 31 passes for 281 yards and two touchdowns in 11 games before going on season-ending injured reserve with three broken ribs and a bruised lung.
Heuerman, taken in the third round of the 2015 draft, has played 37 career games, with 18 starts.
He missed his rookie season after tearing his ACL during minicamp and spent two years as the second tight end on the depth chart behind Virgil Green.
His contributions have slowly risen during his time in the Mile High City, but the Broncos still have questions at the position.
The Broncos lost Matt LaCosse to the New England Patriots in free agency, while injuries have also hampered the rest of the tight end corps.
As well as Heuerman, the Broncos have 2017 fifth-round pick Jake Butt and 2018 fifth-round pick Troy Fumagalli on the roster, as well as Temarrick Hemingway, who joined the practice squad in October 2018 before being promoted to the active roster in November when Heuerman went on IR.
While Heuerman hasn’t put up prolific numbers, injuries and poor quarterback play haven’t helped his cause, but the Broncos like him enough to bring him back to lead a young room.
We also know that Joe Flacco likes to use tight ends, so it wouldn’t be a complete surprise to see the new Broncos quarterback target Heuerman more in the passing game in 2019.