ENGLEWOOD • Pat Surtain II isn't a man of many words.
But on Wednesday, the 21-year-old rookie cornerback sounded confident and ready for his first career start as a Bronco, even if he didn't say much about it.
"I'm approaching it like a regular week," Surtain said. "Taking it day-by-day, working hard in practice. It's a new opportunity for me to step in and fill in the role and be ready."
Surtain will be starting in place of Ronald Darby, who has a strained hamstring and has been placed on the short-term injured reserve, against the Jaguars on Sunday. The Broncos have high expectations for Surtain, who was drafted ninth overall out of Alabama. But few expected him to be thrown into the fire this early in his career, after he only played 16 snaps against the Giants.
Surtain had only one big mistake in those 16 snaps, giving up a 37-yard touchdown to Giants receiver Sterling Shepard.
"I could have squeezed it better," Surtain said of the play. "I should have known that route was coming based off his step. I could have squeezed and sort of like initiated it earlier and just had tighter coverage on it."
Surtain will play right outside cornerback against the Jaguars, after playing mostly dime and left corner against the Giants — he was at left corner when he gave up the touchdown.
One thing that Surtain has going for him this Sunday is that he will be surrounded by 31 years of NFL experience between safeties Justin Simmons and Kareem Jackson, and corners Bryce Callahan and Kyle Fuller. And all of them believe the rookie is more than ready to fill Darby's void.
"He's proven that he can play at the highest level with the best of them his whole career," Simmons said. "Playing in the NFL is really, for him, going to be no different. He's got a great pass rush. The ball is going to have to come out fast. He's got guys like Kareem and myself to be able to kind of direct traffic and make sure he's comfortable. And communication is going to be the biggest thing that keeps him at ease."
Right guard Graham Glasgow did not practice Wednesday after having an irregular heartbeat Sunday and having to leave after the game in an ambulance. Second-year offensive lineman Netane Muti would play in Glasgow's spot if he can't play against the Jaguars.
"It's iffy," coach Vic Fangio said of Glasgow's status for Sunday.
Outside linebacker Bradley Chubb (ankle) and defensive linemen Shelby Harris (wrist) were limited at Broncos' practice Wednesday. Chubb, who didn't play in the opener, still appears to be questionable this week.
"He's going to practice today on a limited basis and give it a go," Fangio said. "I'll probably be better able to answer that tomorrow."