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Broncos' injuries at wide receiver could have impact on special teams

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. – Since the Denver Broncos closed the books on the preseason and elected to keep six wide receivers on their 53-player roster, the team has lauded its depth at the position on the roster.

However, that depth will be tested Sunday against the Oakland Raiders.

Cody Latimer (groin) already has been ruled out for the game and did not practice this past week. Bennie Fowler left Friday’s practice with a sore hamstring and is a question mark for Sunday’s game.

“[Fowler] came out [Friday], he had a sore hamstring," said Broncos coach Gary Kubiak. “So, we just sent him back (inside the team’s facility), because we were counting on him being ready to go also, but he did start practice."

Demaryius Thomas also has had some soreness in his neck this week from a hard hit he took in the team’s victory over the Minnesota Vikings. Thomas was limited in Wednesday’s practice, but was a full participant Thursday and Friday, and as the Broncos closed out their business Friday, Thomas was expected to start and take his usual snaps against the Raiders.

While the Broncos likely can adjust on offense, either by working more from a two-tight end set or by using Jordan Norwood more – Norwood has played 57.4 percent of the offense’s snaps this season – the Broncos would have to make some adjustments on special teams without Fowler and Latimer.

Latimer has played on 39 percent of the team’s special-teams snaps and Fowler has played on 67 percent.