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Broncos depending on WR Royal staying healthy

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Alex Mayster
Editorial assistant

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Posted June 09, 2011 @ 1:14 p.m. ET
By Alex Mayster

When Broncos WR Eddie Royal underwent hip surgery in February, it was unclear how long it would take for him to get back to full strength. The team expected him to return to football activities sometime in late May, and the three-year veteran did just that at the Broncos' recent player-only workout session. Royal's health will be a key factor for the Broncos in 2011, as the team will depend on him in more ways than one. First and foremost, he needs to excel as a receiver for the team to be successful, especially with WR Demaryius Thomas expected to miss at least the first half of the season with a torn Achillies. But Royal is the Broncos' primary return specialist, as well, and the team doesn't have many options behind him. With Thomas out, and CB Perrish Cox's situation still uncertain as he faces sexual assault charges, the returning duties likely will fall to Royal once again. The '11 campaign is a big one for Royal, who has failed to duplicate his strong rookie season. He has been held to less than 60 catches in each of the past two campaigns and has scored only three touchdowns since '08.

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