ENGLEWOOD - Cornerback Lenny Walls was a starter at the beginning of the season for the Denver Broncos, but he probably will finish the season with another team. Walls’ tenure with the Broncos effectively ended Tuesday when the team put him on injured reserve under a rarely used classification for minor injuries that would keep a player out for less than six weeks. Walls, who strained his right groin muscle before the game against the New York Giants on Oct. 23, will be placed on waivers once the Broncos decide he is physically able to practice and play, which should be within a couple of weeks. Walls may sign with another team if he clears waivers. But he can’t be re-acquired by the Broncos for the rest of the season, including the playoffs. Walls began the season as a starter but struggled in the season-opening loss at Miami. Then he slid down the depth chart. Rookie Darrent Williams started for Walls in Week 3 against Kansas City. Rookie Domonique Foxworth also passed Walls. Both have flourished. Foxworth made an interception in the end zone Sunday to prevent Phildelphia from tying the game in the fourth quarter. The Broncos signed safety Hamza Abdullah from Tampa Bay’s practice squad to take Walls’ roster spot. “I’m perfectly fine with it — the way the season’s been going, why not?” Walls said. “A guy loses his starting job after basically, Week 1, you tell me what I should be thinking or how I feel.” Walls’ career with the Broncos quickly went sour after 2003, when he was the team’s top cornerback. Last year he suffered an ankle injury in training camp and shoulder injuries limited him to seven regular-season games, but as a restricted free agent this past offseason he was given a higher tender offer than Kelly Herndon, a twoyear starter for Denver. Walls’ one-year tender was for $1.43 million and any team that signed him would have had to give the Broncos a firstround pick. Herndon got a lower tender offer and Seattle signed him, partially because the Seahawks didn’t have to give Denver a compensatory draft pick. “This whole season has been disappointing for me,” Walls said. “You go through ups and downs and a guy like me, I’ll fight and overcome whatever.” Shanahan made it clear the team was ready to go in a different direction and Walls’ inju- ry was not the reason behind Tuesday’s move. “That had nothing to do with it,” Shanahan said. “It’s just the play of some of our younger guys on special teams.” CONTACT THE WRITER: 476-4891 or firstname.lastname@example.org NEXT Denver (6-2) at Oakland (3-4), 2:05 p.m. Nov. 13, CBS, 740/850 AM
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