Broncos QB Joe Flacco could be out five-six weeks

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The Denver Broncos could be without quarterback Joe Flacco for more than a month.

NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported Tuesday that Flacco is getting a second opinion on his neck injury, but based on the initial read, he could be out as long as five to six weeks, according to a source informed of the situation.

Rapoport added that surgery is unlikely and Flacco's career is not in jeopardy.

Coach Vic Fangio announced Monday that Flacco was ruled out of the team's Week 9 tilt against the Cleveland Browns due to the neck injury. Immediately ruling out the starter early in the week portended a longer recovery.

Brandon Allen, who has played zero regular-season snaps, will get the start for Denver.

Sitting at 2-6, the Broncos have several roster decisions to make. Denver must decide whether it's worth keeping Flacco on the roster through his rehab. Placing the QB on injured reserve could effectively end his season. The Broncos are slated to use an IR-return designation on wide receiver Tim Patrick, leaving just one return spot left. Rookie Drew Lock is eligible to return from IR soon and could use the other designation.

The Broncos seemed poised to promote Brett Rypien from the practice squad to back up Allen, at least until Lock is ready to come off injured reserve.

With Flacco out for the foreseeable future, the Broncos will roll with an inexperienced signal-caller no matter who is under center. Neither Allen, Rypien nor Lock has taken a regular-season snap in the NFL.

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