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Broncos running back McGahee facing lengthy lay off

Denver Broncos running back Willis McGahee (23) flies to the 1-yard-line past New Orleans Saints cornerback Jabari Greer (L) in the first qu
Denver Broncos running back Willis McGahee (23) flies to the 1-yard-line past New Orleans Saints cornerback Jabari Greer (L) in the first qu

(Reuters) - Denver Broncos running back Willis McGahee was expected to miss the rest of the regular season after tests on Monday revealed a torn medial collateral ligament.

Broncos head coach John Fox said that McGahee, who has rushed for 731 yards this year, would not be placed on the Injured Reserve list and expressed hope he could be back in action for the playoffs.

"He's a fast healer, he's a tough competitive guy," Fox told a news conference, adding that the injury would not need surgery.

McGahee tore the ligament during Denver's 30-23 home win over the San Diego Chargers on Sunday.

The expected time for healing an injury like McGahee's tends to be around six-to-eight weeks, raising the possibility he could return if the Broncos advance to the post-season.

While McGahee has been the team's leading rusher for the past two seasons, the Bronco's offense has been transformed under quarterback Peyton Manning into a much more pass-focused unit.

Fox said no roster moves were planned and that the existing running back corps - featuring Ronnie Hillman, Lance Ball and Knowshon Moreno would cover McGahee's duties.

(Reporting By Simon Evans; Editing by Julian Linden)

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