Home / World News / Domata Peko’s 123-game starting streak in jeopardy as Broncos deal with injuries on defensive line – The Denver Post

Domata Peko’s 123-game starting streak in jeopardy as Broncos deal with injuries on defensive line – The Denver Post

Domata Peko is the kind of person who could find joy in a long line at the post office. But even the Broncos’ 325-pound nose tackle was downtrodden in the team’s locker room Sunday after Denver’s seventh straight loss wrapped up a rotten week for the 12th-year veteran.

Peko played Sunday — and made his 123rd consecutive start, the longest among active defensive linemen — while battling the flu. And in the second half of the Broncos’ 21-14 loss to the Raiders, he suffered an MCL sprain in his left knee. The injury is expected to keep him out one to two weeks, Broncos coach Vance Joseph said.

Peko said after the game that his leg had been rolled on in a pile. He walked through the locker room Monday with a brace around the knee and said he still hopes to play against the Dolphins on Sunday.

“I don’t want the streak to end,” he said.

The Broncos also lost defensive end Derek Wolfe to a neck injury on the first series against the Raiders. His status for Sunday’s game is uncertain.

“We’re not sure how serious it is right now,” Joseph said Monday.

Wolfe previously suffered what he called a stinger on the Broncos’ first play against the Bengals on Oct. 19. He said his right arm “went numb,” but feeling later returned and Wolfe returned to the game.

The Broncos have a couple internal options to replace Peko and Wolfe, should both be unable to play. They signed Kyle Peko from the practice squad last week and could use him Sunday. Joseph also said the Broncos could potentially pull rookie Tyrique Jarrett up from the practice squad.

Defending Stewart. Joseph on Monday defended the hit safety Darian Stewart made on Oakland wide receiver Amari Cooper in the second quarter of Sunday’s game, a play that drew an unsportsmanlike penalty flag and left Cooper with a concussion.

After the game, Raiders coach Jack Del Rio called Stewart’s hit “vicious” and “the kind we’re trying to remove from our game, quite frankly.”

Joseph disagreed.

“‘Stew’ was trying avoid the guy,” he said. “‘Stew’ hurt himself (while) avoiding hitting the kid in the head and neck area. The ball was thrown way inside of the hash. It was thrown high. ‘Stew’ went to make a play on the ball. The receiver ducked, in my opinion, and ‘Stew’ pulled his head out, to not make helmet-to-helmet contact, and lowered his shoulder.”

Joseph also seemed to take issue with Del Rio labeling Stewart’s hit before having time to review the film.

“I’m not going to speak for the Raiders,” Joseph said. “But as a coach, when things happen on the field, you have to go back and watch the tape before you make comments like that. I will say that.”

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