Diontae Spencer

Pittsburgh Steelers
Wide Receiver #0
Pittsburgh Steelers
Wide Receiver #0

Diontae Spencer News

Won't be tendered

The Broncos won't tender Spencer, who will become a free agent when the new league year starts March 16, Mike Klis of 9News Denver reports.

Analysis: Spencer had two good years as the Broncos' primary returner, but he struggled in that role last season. He garnered a minimal role on offense during his three seasons in Denver, registering just 10 catches for 54 yards.

Mar 13, 2022 12:53 PM EST

Records one catch in 2021

Spencer finished the 2021 season with one catch for minus-3 yards.

Analysis: Spencer played in all but two games this season, but was a non-factor for the Broncos' offense. The 29-year-old played on just six percent of the team's offensive snaps in 2021, finding it difficult to see the field behind the team's top trio of Jerry Jeudy, Courtland Sutton and Tim Patrick at wide receiver. Spencer did most of his damage as Denver's leading returner, totaling 17 kickoff returns for 291 yards and 26 punt returns for 206 yards. The wideout will enter the 2022 offseason as a restricted free agent and will be free to negotiate with any teams interested in signing him. The Broncos, however, can match a contract offer if they wish to keep him with the team. Denver's receiving corps is a talented and crowded group, so it will be interesting to see if the Broncos keep Spencer around in 2022. If not, Spencer may look to sign with another team in an effort to push for more playing time on offense.

Jan 17, 2022 12:35 PM EST

Inactive Saturday

Spencer is listed as inactive for Saturday's regular-season finale against the Chiefs due to a coach's decision, Aric DiLalla of the Broncos' official website reports.

Analysis: With six other healthy wide receivers available, Spencer will be the odd man out Saturday. Thus, his 2020 campaign will officially come to an end.

Jan 8, 2022 12:12 PM EST

Plays three offensive snaps

Spencer failed to record a single target in Sunday's 34-13 loss to the Chargers.

Analysis: With both Jerry Jeudy (illness) and Tim Patrick (illness) on the reserve/COVID-19 list, Spencer entered Sunday's contest as a candidate to see an increased workload. Unfortunately, this was not the case, as the wideout played just a few snaps and was not targeted by Drew Lock. Spencer remains far off the fantasy radar for a Week 18 matchup with the Chiefs.

Jan 5, 2022 4:51 AM EST

Starting role likely awaits

Spencer could have a regular role in three-receiver sets Sunday against the Chargers with Jerry Jeudy (illness) and Tim Patrick (illness) not available after landing on the reserve/COVID-19 list and Courtland Sutton (illness) listed as questionable for the contest, Aric DiLalla of the Broncos' official site reports.

Analysis: Head coach Vic Fangio said that Sutton could still wind up on the list after sitting out Friday's practice with an illness, potentially leaving Denver without its top three receivers. Spencer and Kendall Hinton were left as the only fully healthy wideouts on the 53-man roster Friday before Travis Fulgham and Seth Williams were elevated from the practice squad as COVID-19 replacements for Jeudy and Patrick. With that in mind, Spencer and Hinton are presumably first in line to fill the vacated snaps at receiver, though neither has a resume at the NFL level that makes either a must-start fantasy option. Backup quarterback Drew Lock will also be directing the offense for a second straight game while Teddy Bridgewater (concussion) is out, which could result in the low-tempo Denver offense becoming even more run-heavy.

Dec 31, 2021 3:33 PM EST

Held catchless in loss

Spencer failed to secure his lone target in Sunday's 27-19 loss to the Steelers.

Analysis: Spencer played on just two of the Broncos' 60 offensive snaps Sunday. In a game where Denver trailed Pittsburgh for most of the contest, Spencer's lack of usage was somewhat surprising. The 29-year-old wideout is currently the No. 4 wide receiver on the Broncos' depth chart after KJ Hamler suffered a season-ending torn ACL and while Jerry Jeudy remains sidelined with an ankle injury. With the latter making his return to the field in the near future, Spencer should be ignored for fantasy purposes.

Oct 11, 2021 9:12 PM EST

Ready to face Steelers

Spencer is active for Sunday's matchup against the Steelers.

Analysis: Spencer entered Sunday with a questionable tag due to a chest injury. He exited the team's Week 4 contest early with the injury, but he was able to return to log two limited practices to close the week. Spencer should serve as the Broncos' primary return man, paired with a very limited offensive role.

Oct 10, 2021 8:47 AM EST

Questionable for Week 5

Spencer (chest) is questionable for Sunday's game against the Steelers, Aric DiLalla of the Broncos' official site reports.

Analysis: Spencer practiced in a limited capacity Thursday, but he'll enter Friday's matchup with an injury designation after he exited last week's loss to the Ravens. Kendall Hinton and David Moore will likely see additional work if the 29-year-old is unavailable against Pittsburgh.

Oct 8, 2021 5:56 PM EST

Limited in Thursday's practice

Spencer (chest) was a limited participant in Thursday's practice, Aric DiLalla of the Broncos' official site reports.

Analysis: Spencer was unable to practice Wednesday, so it was encouraging to see him back on the field a day later. The 29-year-old will likely have to log a full practice Friday if he hopes to avoid an injury designation ahead of Sunday's game against the Steelers.

Oct 7, 2021 11:06 AM EST

Not at practice Wednesday

Spencer (chest) didn't practice Wednesday, George Stoia III of The Denver Gazette reports.

Analysis: Spencer was forced to leave Sunday's loss to the Ravens after a hard hit in the first half. The 29-year-old is considered day-to-day, so his status should be monitored throughout the week. If he is unable to suit up, the Broncos would likely have to use Kendall Hinton as their primary return man.

Oct 6, 2021 11:10 AM EST

Considered day-to-day

Spencer (chest) is considered day-to-day after exiting Sunday's game against the Ravens, Kyle Newman of The Denver Post reports.

Analysis: Spencer took a hard hit in the first half of Sunday's loss to Baltimore, and he was unable to finish the contest. His Week 5 status likely depends on how much he's able to practice this week, but David Moore and Kendall Hinton are in line for increased roles against the Steelers if the 29-year-old is held out.

Oct 4, 2021 10:47 AM EST

Won't return Sunday

Spencer (chest) has been ruled out of Sunday's game against the Ravens.

Analysis: Spencer's downgrade means the Broncos will be further shorthanded at receiver for the rest of the contest. Kendall Hinton has already picked up a target in the 29-year-old's absence, and David Moore could see extra work as well.

Oct 3, 2021 3:17 PM EST

Suffers chest injury Sunday

Spencer (chest) is questionable to return to Sunday's contest against the Ravens, Zac Stevens of TheDNVR.com reports.

Analysis: Spencer couldn't haul in his only target before leaving with an injury in the first half of Week 4. With KJ Hamler (knee) out for the year, the Broncos are already without one of their top returners. If Spencer is unable to return, Kendall Hinton would be the most likely candidate to return kicks and punts for the rest of the contest.

Oct 3, 2021 2:52 PM EST

Expanded role looming

Spencer will be the next man up after the Broncos lost KJ Hamler (knee) for the season, Ryan O'Halloran of the Denver Post reports.

Analysis: After logging just nine offensive snaps through the first two weeks of the season, Spencer played 23 snaps during Sunday's contest. The 29-year-old will likely slide into the third spot on the depth chart while the Broncos are without Hamler and Jerry Jeudy. Spencer has only caught 10 passes during his three-year career, so fantasy expectations should be tempered despite the uptick in snaps.

Sep 28, 2021 12:40 PM EST

Resumes practicing

Spencer (knee) returned to practice Wednesday, Mike Klis of 9News Denver reports.

Analysis: Spencer has missed practice recently due to a lingering knee injury, and while the Broncos could continue taking a cautious approach to his activity level leading up to the regular season, it's encouraging to see the 29-year-old handling reps again. The 5-foot-8, 170-pound wideout has focused on improving as an all-around receiver this offseason, though with the amount of capable pass catchers around to demand targets in Denver, it's difficult to imagine an easy path to offensive opportunities. On special teams, however, Spencer could thrive if healthy. He ranked seventh in the league in terms of punt return yards last season.

Aug 11, 2021 12:33 PM EST

Misses practice

Spencer (knee) missed practice Saturday, George Stoia of the Colorado Springs Gazette reports.

Analysis: Spencer was held out of practice to give him a chance to recuperate from a lingering knee issue. Coach Vic Fangio noted that the wideout's knee has "been up and down. He's been practicing through it; we just felt he needed a day. I don't think he'll be out long." For now, it appears the Broncos are being cautious with the 29-year-old receiver, who impressed as a punt returner last season. Meanwhile, Spencer has discussed his efforts to become a better all-around receiver, as he hasn't contributed much in Denver's passing game over the last two years. With a crowded group of pass catchers in the team's offense, however, the 5-foot-8, 170-pounder faces an uphill battle to make any sort of noise as a receiver, at least for fantasy purposes.

Aug 8, 2021 7:52 AM EST

Signs ERFA tender

Spencer has signed his exclusive rights free agent tender with the Broncos, Zac Stevens of DNVR Sports reports.

Analysis: Spencer will return to the Broncos in 2021 after establishing himself as one of the league's most dangerous punt returners last season. He's expected to maintain a prominent role on special teams but a minimal one on offense, as Spencer recorded just three catches and three rushing attempts for 45 scrimmage yards in 2020.

Apr 15, 2021 8:00 PM EST

Receiving tender from Broncos

The Broncos tendered exclusive rights free agent Spencer on Monday, Mike Klis of 9News Denver reports.

Analysis: A midseason shoulder injury and a subsequent stint on the reserve/COVID-19 list kept Spencer to 11 appearances in 2020, but he shined as a punter returner when active. Spencer was one of eight players in the NFL to score on a punt return last season, while his two returns of 40-plus yards ranked second in the league to All-Pro Gunner Olszewski. Given Spencer's status as an exclusive rights free agent, this latest transaction locks him in as a Bronco heading into the 2021 campaign.

Mar 9, 2021 6:55 PM EST

Among league's best punt returners

Spencer returned 16 punts for 253 yards and 15 kicks for 281 yards. On offense, Spencer caught three of six targets for 26 yards and rushed three times for 19 total yards.

Analysis: Spencer finished the season ranked seventh in the league in punt return yards. That success didn't translate to kick returns, where he finished 30th. Given Spencer's minimal role on offense, it'll be interesting to see what the Broncos do with Spencer this offseason as he enters exclusive-rights free agency. Rookie Tyrie Cleveland, who showed flashes as a receiver in the season finale, also looked good as a kick returner midseason when Spencer missed time midseason while fellow rookie KJ Hamler handled punt returns.

Jan 14, 2021 7:46 PM EST

Targeted twice in loss

Spencer caught one of his two targets for a 10-yard gain and added a nine-yard run during Sunday's 19-16 loss at the Chargers. He added 111 total yards on five kick returns and 46 total yards on three punt returns.

Analysis: Spencer doubled his season total of targets Sunday as KJ Hamler (concussion) exited early. The diminutive target was even the closest target to Drew Lock's last-second Hail-Mary heave at the end of the ballgame. If Hamler can't play in the season finale against Las Vegas, expect Spencer to get a touch or two on offense, particular with gadget-type plays.

Dec 28, 2020 6:16 PM EST

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