ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- For all the fans who are just dying to see the 2014 edition of their team on the practice field, the wait is almost over.
Even better, the players are just as amped to strut their stuff in front of the team's most fervent supporters.
After strapping on the pads for the first time Saturday morning, the team is taking their gear to Sports Authority Field at Mile High today for the first of three stadium practices that are free and open to the public. Practices at Dove Valley have been eerily quiet without the fans' presence on the west berm, which should make Sunday's atmosphere even more electric.
"It's going to be my first time actually playing in there so it's going to be exciting getting in front of fans and just playing in the stadium," T.J. Ward said Saturday.
Ward is just one of several big-name acquisitions the team brought in this season who the fans haven't had the chance to cheer for yet. That will change Sunday, in front of what should be an enormous crowd.
"They're really excited about seeing us and this will be our first real initial introduction to the fans at the stadium," DeMarcus Ware said. "And why not have it at the stadium?"
Returning players are looking forward to training in front of the crowd as well, and will be sure to make up for lost time afterward.
"We love to give back to the community because they do so much for us," Montee Ball said. "They provide us with so much support, which we love. We love to play in front of them and sign some autographs for sure."
Not that the team needs any more energy than it displayed on Saturday, but the crowd's presence might just provide some extra juice.
"We have such great fans," Head Coach John Fox said. "That obviously sparks (the players), especially since the fans aren't able to come out here. I think they are definitely looking forward to it."
"(The physicality) will probably pick up a little bit tomorrow in the stadium so I'm looking forward to tomorrow," Ward said.
*The gates will open at 10 a.m., the team will have a walkthrough at 11:30 a.m. and practice will run from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. Parking lots will open at 8 a.m. Entry and parking are free to the public. Fans planning on attending the event can click here for more information.