Ryan Clady injury: Broncos tackle needs shoulder surgery

Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports

Ryan Clady will undergo shoulder surgery and could miss the entire offseason. Will the injury impact his impending free agency?

Denver Broncos left tackle Ryan Clady will undergo surgery to repair a shoulder injury he suffered late in the season, according to a report from the Denver Post.

For more on the story, visit Mile High Report

Clady, who is scheduled to be an unrestricted free agent, suffered the injury in the final game of the regular season against Kansas City. He missed practice during the Broncos' bye week and again in the week leading up to their Divisional round game against Baltimore, but still managed to play against the Ravens.

Following Denver's loss, Clady pulled out of the Pro Bowl due to the injury and will now have surgery. The rehabilitation process will likely cause Clady to miss most of the offseason workouts, but according to the report, he is expected to be head by the 2013 regular season opener.

The injury could have an impact on Clady's impending free agency. After proving to be one of the top left tackles in the NFL during his five-year career in Denver, Clady shouldn't have a shortage of potential suitors. That is, if he makes it to unrestricted free agency. Clady and the Broncos could agree on a long-term contract extension or Denver could use the franchise tag to keep Clady for next season. Denver would have to tender Clady a one-year contract worth an estimated $9.66 million if they use the franchise tag.

In the event Clady did hit unrestricted free agency, the injury isn't likely to hinder his ability to land a big contract assuming his recovery timetable stays on track. Teams will do their own evaluations, but missing one offseason isn't likely to be enough to stop teams from locking up a 26-year-old franchise left tackle.

Clady has proven to be durable during his career, starting all 80 regular season games since being drafted with the No. 12 pick of the 2008 NFL Draft.

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