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Great Expectations

Posted Jul 25, 2012

One day away from training camp, players aren't shying away from lofty expectations.


ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- Cornerback Tracy Porter is one of several former Super Bowl champions on the Denver Broncos roster.

Entering training camp, he compared the feeling within the organization to that of the year he earned his ring with the Saints.

“It’s very similar to the Super Bowl year we had in New Orleans,” Porter said. “We have extremely high expectations on this team, starting with (quarterback) Peyton (Manning) all the way down to the last guy on the roster. Our expectations are not to just hopefully get to the playoffs, our expectations are to get back to New Orleans to play for the Super Bowl and win the Super Bowl.”

But managing expectations is just as important as having them.

Defensive end Elvis Dumervil agreed that the potential to succeed is felt unanimously throughout the franchise, but that doesn’t mean it can be realized over night. Having a productive training camp is the task at hand – not winning the Super Bowl.

“We’ve got a lot of good players on this team, a good coaching staff, so we’re excited about the direction we’re going," Dumervil said. "Nothing’s going to be given to us. We’ve got to go into training camp and compete day in and day out and make the best of it.”

Entering camp completely healthy, Dumervil added that he’s “looking to have one of (his) best years.”

Head Coach John Fox is also excited about the level of expectations as they approach the start of the 2012 season. But he knows the Broncos aren’t alone.

“I would hope that everybody in that locker room at that 4:00 meeting today has great expectations,” Fox said. “I think if you look around at the other 31 cities in the National Football League, everybody’s goal is to win that world championship. So, you know, that’s what everybody’s expectations are.”

The anticipation of success isn’t confined to the team's Dove Valley headquarters. The players know that attitude has spread to the entire fan base.

“From the outside, I know (expectations) are high,” tight end Jacob Tamme said. “I know our fan base is excited and expects a lot. Internally, I think our expectations are high and they should be high.”

Even with the city’s hopes a mile high, there isn’t any added pressure in the thin air.

“Honestly, we’ve got one of the best quarterbacks of all time, so I think we shouldn’t feel pressure at all,” Dumervil said. “I don’t think the guys on our team feel pressure.”

The players expect to win. They also know that every other team expects the same thing. But, as Porter said, it’s different here in Denver.

“If anybody else’s expectations are higher than ours on this team, then we have a problem,” Porter said.