Broncos legend Champ Bailey didn’t need to stand next to The Rock on the sidelines at Folsom Field to believe CSU defensive back Henry Blackburn’s late hit on CU’s Travis Hunter came with bad intentions.
“You saw how (Blackburn) looked at him… It was intentional,” Bailey, the Hall of Fame cornerback, told reporters Sunday afternoon at Empower Field prior to the Broncos’ game against Washington.
“That’s just the nature of the game, but you worry about those things.”
In the first quarter of Colorado’s electrifying 43-35 double-overtime victory over Colorado State on Saturday, Hunter ran a go route near the Buffs’ sideline when Blackburn leveled the two-way star after the ball had already fallen incomplete. Colorado State was assessed with defensive pass interference and unnecessary roughness on the play.
Hunter returned to the game on defense during the Rams’ next possession and played for most of the first half. But five minutes into the second half, the team announced that he had been taken to a hospital. Hunter finished the game with two receptions for 21 yards.
Colorado coach Deion Sanders said after the game that he wasn’t sure of the specifics of the injury, but Hunter is expected to be out a “few weeks.”
“That’s the risk. People try to take you,” Bailey said. “And unfortunately he might be out for a while.”
Bailey said players like Hunter have a target on their back. Bailey, who is considered one of the best cornerbacks in NFL history, said he is not surprised about Hunter’s talent level. As someone who once played quarterback, defensive back and receiver at Georgia, few would know better than him.
Bailey’s biggest concern for him is if he can stay durable playing wide receiver and cornerback. Besides that, he thinks the sky’s the limit for Hunter.
“There’s a few kids that come out of high school that have the chance to do that or (are) capable,” Bailey said. “He’s shown to be one of the greats in every level that he has played.”
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