Broncos WR Emmanuel Sanders Shines in Return From Achilles Tear

The 32-year-old isn't even ninth months removed from what's normally a devastating injury.
By , RADIO.COM Sports

While San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo's disastrous return from a torn ACL stole the show Monday night, another star fared much better in his return from a major injury.

Denver Broncos wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders made his preseason debut Monday night against the 49ers, less than ninth months since he tore his Achilles in a December practice.

Let's just say that Sanders - a two-time Pro-Bowler - didn't look like a 32-year-old returning remarkably quickly from one of the most devastating injuries an athlete can have.

Broncos first-year offensive coordinator Rich Scangarello didn't waste much time letting Sanders ease back into things, as the team's fourth offensive play of the game was an end-around that saw Sanders carry the ball for 19 yards:

Sanders also made a five-yard catch in that same drive.

Joe Flacco, who is in his first year as Broncos quarterback, did also find Sanders down the field for what would have been a gain of over 50 yards had it not been called back:

Understandably, Sanders was ecstatic after the game.

To be able to come back and feel how I feel and feel better, still be able to hang out with these 24-year-old kids and still be able to run with them, it's amazing," Sanders told ESPN's Jeff Legwold. "I don't take anything for granted.''

In nine NFL seasons with the Broncos and Pittsburgh Steelers, Sanders has 7,024 receiving yards and 37 touchdowns.