ENGLEWOOD, Colo. – David Terrell isn’t bitter that the New England Patriots cut him before the start of this season. Terrell, a receiver for the Denver Broncos, was just happy to get out of New England with his health and his career intact.

Terrell, the eighth overall pick of the 2001 draft by the Chicago Bears, said he spent 10 days in a hospital during training camp after a staph infection in his left leg.

He has a scar on his shin, which is how his problems started.

Terrell said this summer he was running stadium stairs at his University of Michigan alma mater and missed a step. He cut his leg when he tripped.

About a week-and-a-half into Patriots training camp, the wound hadn’t healed properly. A team doctor made an incision to help drain the wound and Terrell got in a hot tub not long after that.

“That’s when I got the staph infection,” Terrell said.

He made a trip to the hospital and a hole was cut in his leg to drain the staph infection, which is caused by bacteria entering the body. He spent plenty of his 10 days in the hospital wondering what the long-term damage would be.

“I didn’t know,” Terrell said. “It was scary for me.”

Football wasn’t Terrell’s biggest concern, but the tough reality was New England’s other receivers were in camp and passing him on the depth chart. New England had taken a chance on Terrell after four disappointing seasons with the Bears, and didn’t have any strong ties to him. Terrell missed New England’s first two preseason games and didn’t do enough in the final two preseason games to win a job.

“I was missing games and they were going to go on without me,” Terrell said. “There wasn’t anything I could do. It wasn’t like I had a thigh bruise. I had like a 4- or 5-inch hole in my leg.

“I couldn’t leave until the infection was totally out of my body. It was pretty bad.”

Terrell landed with the Broncos after New England cut him. Terrell hasn’t played in a game for Denver because he was behind other receivers and had to learn the playbook. Broncos coach Mike Shanahan said he wasn’t sure if Terrell would be able to play against New England on today or when he would be active on game day. But he is making progress.

“He’s learning the system,” Shanahan said. “He’s getting better. He’s proving to us that he’s a football player.”

Terrell said he’s feeling good, he’s happy to be in Denver and he isn’t upset with the Patriots or coach Bill Belichick for cutting him.

“Not at all,” Terrell said. “I don’t hold anything against them. They did what they felt they needed to do.”

Gause signed

Defensive end George Gause was signed to Denver’s practice squad. Gause was among the Buffalo Bills’ final cuts before the regular season.


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