Denver Broncos center J.D. Walton will likely be out for the rest of the season after breaking his ankle in Sunday's win over the Oakland Raiders, The Denver Post's Mike Klis reported Sunday night.
In the second quarter of the Broncos' 37-6 romp over the Raiders, Oakland defensive end Jack Crawford caused Walton's ankle to roll over as he was blocking on a running play.
Klis pointed out that Walton, a third-year center out of Baylor, had played in all but one snap during his first 37-plus games in the NFL. He had started every game since the Broncos drafted him with the 16th pick in the third round of the 2010 NFL Draft.
"I'm absolutely sick about J.D. Walton and his potential injury," Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning said after the game. "I haven't heard the official (prognosis) but it sure didn't look good out there. I know how hard he has worked. My heart goes out to him."With Walton out, veteran Dan Koppen — who the Broncos signed as insurance in early September — will get the starting nod. Koppen started in 120 games during a nine-year career with the New England Patriots, snapping the ball to another all-time great quarterback in Tom Brady.