Elvis Dumervil back this season? Don’t count on it.

DENVER - OCTOBER 05:  Defensive end Elvis Dumervil #92 of the Denver Broncos gets double teamed by Jeremy Trueblood #65 and Davin Joseph #75 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during NFL action on October 5, 2008 in Denver, Colorado. The Broncos defeated the Buccaneers 16-13.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

In a recent Q&A for the Denver Post, columnist Mike Klis tells Broncos fans not to fear, because linebacker Elvis Dumervil (torn pectoral) will return at some point this season.

Let’s begin this mailbag by stating that based on nearly everything I’ve been hearing, Elvis Dumervil is expected back this season.

To answer your question, yes, clubs do get insurance on their star players. But the key to collecting is a career-ending injury. Dumervil probably won’t even be out for the season, much less for his career. He suffered a torn pectoral, not an amputated femur.

Barring a setback in his rehab, expect Dumervil to return and play in 2010.

I view myself as an optimistic guy, but I don’t see any way Dumervil returns this season. First and foremost, the math doesn’t add up. The doctors have given him a five-month recovery time and players who have had this injury before have come back no earlier than five months. Seeing as how Dumervil suffered the injury in early August, that puts his return at sometime in December.

Granted, there are games to be played in December, so theoretically yes, Dumervil could return in 2010. That said, if the Broncos don’t place him on IR, they’ll have to burn up a roster spot until he returns. Denver has already been bitten by the injury bug several times this month and more injuries are likely coming. Can Josh McDaniels afford to keep Dumervil on the active roster all season? Doubtful.

That said, I’m not a doctor, nor do I pretend to be one. For all we know, Dumervil heals at double the speed of a normal human and he could be back in October. But then that begs the question, would the Broncos want to rush him back and risk further injury?

Injuries are part of the game and it’s unfortunate that a hard worker like Dumervil had to suffer one in training camp. But he needs time to heel and I just don’t see him coming back in 2010.

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Elvis Dumervil’s injury, Darrelle Revis’ holdout and the New York Jets

NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 16: New York Jets Darrelle Revis poses for a portrait on March 16, 2010 in New York, New York. (Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images)

I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall when Jets’ GM Mike Tannenbaum and owner Woody Johnson saw the news that Broncos’ linebacker Elvis Dumervil suffered a torn pectoral muscle yesterday.

The conversation probably went something like this:

“We’re f*&%ed with Darrelle Revis, Woody!”

“Now, now – maybe he didn’t hear about this, Mike.”

“It’s all over the f*#&ing news, Woody! Get your head out of your a$$!”

Dumervil led the league in sacks last year while emerging as the Broncos’ best pass-rusher. He also had just signed a lucrative six-year, $61.5 million contract just three weeks before suffering the injury. Now he’s likely to miss the entire season and Denver is up a creek without a paddle in terms of his contract. (Even if the injury keeps him out of football this year, the Broncos still have to pay him.)

One could only imagine that the injury reinforced to Revis the need for him to continue to holdout. He already has former Jet Leon Washington in his ear about what could happen if he plays on a one-year contract, and now Dumervil’s injury serves as yet another reminder to 1) get paid and then 2) play.

The Jets want Revis to either play on a restructured one-year deal or sign a long-term agreement that will pay him slightly less annually than the Raiders are paying Nnamdi Asomugha. But Revis wants neither – especially not the former. Had Dumervil not signed the six-year agreement before suffering the injury, there’s no way the Broncos would have paid him after he tore the muscle. He would have probably had to produce another double-digit sack season just to justify a long-term deal because all of the leverage he got from his performance last year would have flown out the window.

If the Jets were hoping that Revis would blink first, they may be waiting a long time in light of Dumervil’s injury. It might be time for Johnson and Tannenbaum to pay Revis what he wants and call it a day.

Dumervil tears pec muscle as Broncos off to a horrific start in 2010

DENVER - SEPTEMBER 16:  Defensive end Elvis Dumervil #92 of the Denver Broncos leaves the line of scrimmage as the Denver Broncos defeated the Oakland Raiders 23-20 in overtime during week two NFL action at Invesco Field at Mile High on September 16, 2007 in Denver, Colorado.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

If this past week offers any indication of how the Broncos will fair in 2010, then Josh McDaniels and company are in for a long season.

Just days after the Broncos lost starting running back Knowshown Moreno for 2-3 weeks because of a torn right hamstring, Elvis Dumervil suffered a torn pectoral muscle and will be out for up to five months.

Fans have the right to remain hopeful that Dumervil will return at some point this season, but the math suggests otherwise. If he’s out for five months, that makes his return December and at that point, Denver might as well keep him out the rest of the year.

The real kick to the stones for the Broncos is that they just signed Dumervil to a six-year, $61.5 million contract three weeks ago. And this was after they deliberated about whether or not to just let the linebacker play on the one-year tender they signed him to in June.

But you can’t blame the Broncos for shelling out big bucks to their best pass-rusher. Dumervil led the league in sacks last year and had become a vital component to the team’s defense. Injuries obviously can’t be predicted and there was no way of knowing that Dumervil was going to rip a chest muscle less than a month after the Broncos broke out their checkbook. Despite their incredibly bad timing and luck, it was still the right decision for Denver at the time.

So what now? The Broncos have a couple of options available on the free agent market, including the recently released Aaron Schobel and former Patriot Adiliuas Thomas. But who knows whether or not Schobel would want to play in Denver’s 3-4 and given the lack of interest in Thomas this offseason (and his poor production in ’09 for Bill Belichick), maybe the Broncos will pass on signing a veteran. Of course, the team also has some internal options, as Robert Ayers could switch sides or Jarvis Moss could actually cash in on some of his first round potential. (That later idea is far-fetched, I know.)

Either way, the Broncos couldn’t be off to a worse start in 2010. Moreno should be back in a couple of weeks, but no team wants to see their best pass-rusher go down a month before the season. That’s not to say that other players can’t and/or won’t step up, but this isn’t the most talented team in the league as it is.

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