Q: What is the status of guard Chris Kuper for the playoffs?
Read more: Broncos have questions to answer on Denver offensive line before playoffs?
Paul, if the Broncos have a question mark looming over them in the playoffs, this is it. They ended their playoff bye week with two starters in the offensive line — Kuper and left tackle Ryan Clady — dealing with injuries. The Broncos are optimistic both will play in their playoff opener Saturday, but if one or the other or both are not full speed it will be plainly evident once they face opposing pass rushers.Overall, the Broncos surrendered 19 of their 21 sacks on Manning this season in games Kuper did not play on offense.
Clady's status bears watching as well. He was not on the field during the open periods of practice this past week with an undisclosed issue. Broncos coach John Fox said Clady did later come out each day to view practice, but in the end Clady did not participate in drills.His injury has been described as a "nagging" item and that he was simply being rested. Clady did have major knee surgery before the 2010 season and dealt with some hamstring issues earlier this season that limited him some in practice. He has not missed a game in his career, however, and privately the Broncos don't believe he'll miss Saturday's game. But in a pass-first offense if the left tackle sneezes, the quarterback catches pneumonia.
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