Denver Broncos' Von Miller tears ACL, out for season

The Denver Broncos' journey through the NFL postseason will unfold without the services of Von Miller.

NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport reported Monday that MRI testing revealed that the star pass rusher suffered a torn ACL in Sunday's 37-13 win over the Houston Texans, per a source informed of the injury. The Broncos later confirmed Miller's injury. 

Rapoport was told that Miller will seek a second opinion, but initial testing suggested an isolated ACL injury, indicating a cleaner rehab process.

It's a crushing blow that strips the Broncos of their best defensive player with just one week to go in the regular season. Miller -- a two-time Pro Bowl outside linebacker -- exited the game in the first quarter under his own power, shutting down a season that saw him post five sacks in nine appearances.

Miller was replaced Sunday by Nate Irving, a fierce downgrade for a defense that hasn't been a strength this season for Denver. The Broncos have struggled to sack the quarterback, and Miller's injury strips the roster of the only pass rusher opponents were forced to game plan around.

Denver barreled through the opening portion of its schedule to a 6-0 mark while Miller served his early-season suspension, but that came with four players -- Derek Wolfe, Kevin Vickerson, Rahim Moore and Kayvon Webster -- who weren't on the field Sunday.

On NFL Network
NFL Replay
will re-air Peyton Manning's record-setting performance in the Denver Broncos' 37-13 victory over the Houston Texans from Week 16 on Tuesday, Dec. 24 at 3:30 p.m. ET. It will re-air as an "NFL Replay Game Of The Week Special" -- with Peyton Manning wired for sound by NFL Films -- on Thursday, Dec. 26 at 9 p.m. ET.

After rolling into last January with Miller and Elvis Dumervil, the Broncos will enter the postseason party with Danny Trevathan and the unproven Irving on the edge.

Miller's loss won't be easy to patch over. Despite missing six games, he currently leads all players at his position with 27 quarterback hurries, per Pro Football Focus. Lauded as a sack-master, he's an underrated run-stopper and outstanding in pass coverage. Miller, incidentally, leads all starting outside linebackers with just 23 yards allowed after the catch.

He's the definition of a complete defender in today's NFL. Denver can't possibly replace him, but Super Bowl teams -- if that's what these Broncos are -- find ways to fill the gap.

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