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Scheffler forced to watch with broken foot

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- Tony Scheffler has yet to run a pass pattern, let alone catch a pass in the past two weeks of offseason workouts. A broken left foot has seen to that.

Yet, the third-year tight end is determined he will be at full speed when the Denver Broncos open training camp in late July.

Height: 6-5

Weight: 250

College: W. Michigan

Experience: 2

G/GS: 29/12

"There's no doubt in my mind," Scheffler said Thursday after the third day of team camp. "I missed training camp last year and it was obvious to me that I need to be there and have to participate."

Scheffler broke the foot during the first day of quarterback camp this year May 19. It was the same foot he broke in May 2007 during a team's passing camp.

"It happened pretty similar to the first time," Scheffler said. "Just running a route and I don't know if it was scar tissue or what, but I felt a pop."

While the rest of the team has practiced, the tight end has been limited to walking around in a boot and getting fitted with new shoes and foot protective equipment.

"We're a little bit more preventive right now," coach Mike Shanahan said. "We don't want to aggravate it. That's why we put the boot on."

Scheffler is coming off a season where he caught 49 passes for 549 yards and five touchdowns. Over his first two seasons, he has 67 catches for 835 yards and nine TD receptions.

The latest bout with a broken foot has Scheffler openly frustrated.

"I thought it was better, January through March, and thought I was finally past that point," Scheffler said. "It took another running of a route and twisting it the wrong way to realize stuff happens. It's part of the game."

As is the realization that pain will be a constant companion of his in the short term.

"I've talked to guys with the same injury and a lot of specialists and have been told it takes awhile for the pain to go completely away," he said. "I'm told it's a hard bone to heal and the pain is going to be there for at least a couple of years."

Dewayne Roberston said his knee so far has held up. The defensive tackle who was acquired from the New York Jets in the offseason for a conditional pick in the 2009 draft has been troubled in recent years by an injured knee.

"I've been playing like this for the last three or four years, so I'll be OK," Robertson said. "There's nothing I can't deal with."

Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press

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