ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- Elvis Dumervil was ready.
Ready to get back to work. Ready to meet his new teammates. Ready to build toward something special.
"I think it's always important to go back home and recharge -- it was a long year last year," said Dumervil, who spent the first part of his offseason in Miami with family. "But I was ready to get back. I just wanted to come here, get that camaraderie going and be part of something with the team, get ready for this great year that we're going to have."
The defensive end arrived in Denver on Sunday, and a day later he joined in the team's offseason conditioning program.'
Dumervil is looking to build off a season in which he tied for eighth in the AFC with 9.5 sacks in addition to notching 42 tackles, a pass breakup and a fumble recovery.
He fought through injuries early in the season to put together a stretch of eight games with at least a half-sack en route to his second career Pro Bowl selection, just one year removed from missing the entire 2010 season due to a torn pectoral.
With his rehab and the lockout leading up to last season, Dumervil said he's excited to have a full offseason with his teammates again.
"Last year I was coming back from injury, you kind of hesitate, you don't know, you're nervous it's going to happen again," he said. "Now it's a clear mind. Just work hard, get better. Now I'm with teammates getting that camaraderie. That's what it's about, guys trusting in one another, making sure every guy does the job and everybody's pulling their weight. As long as we can do that, everybody does their job, it'll be a great year."
After one day back at Dove Valley, Dumervil's optimism surrounding the 2012 campaign was obvious.
He enjoyed meeting new Defensive Coordinator Jack Del Rio -- who he said has a "fiery side," -- and many of his new teammates, including "Mr. Peyton Manning himself."
After all, it was Dumervil and Champ Bailey who were "blowing up" Manning's phone, according to the quarterback, during the free agency process.
Dumervil laughed when he heard that assessment of his early communication with Manning.
"We were just reaching out a little to let him know what kind of teammates we have here, what we felt he could help bring to this team," Dumervil explained. "He's a missing piece of the puzzle that we could use to help us get to that next level. He's such a high-character person off the field, and on the field he's got good leadership skills.
"We let him know that, hey, we're excited and we'd be pleased to have an opportunity to play with a guy of his caliber. We just went out, exchanged a few words and told him we thought it would be a good fit if he came in. Obviously he took our words into consideration."
Now the team has Manning at quarterback and a new defense in the process of being installed.
"It seems fun," Dumervil said of the scheme. "Guys are getting excited."
And the defensive end has a new teammate on the line to factor into that scheme.
Dumervil is plenty familiar with second-round pick Derek Wolfe because he's a "Big East guy."
"I watched him," he said of the Cincinnati defensive tackle. "I'm excited. It seems like he plays with a chip on his shoulder. He has a high motor. I don't think he can be blocked one-on-one, and that's what we need. I think what me and Von (Miller) can do on the outside, then bringing in additional help, especially inside, is tremendous for us. Hopefully he comes in and he's ready to work. I'm excited to have him and I'm looking forward to meeting him."
With so much to look forward to, Dumervil said he's confident in what the Broncos can do this season.
"You have to be," he said. "You've got to win. The year is now. Last year, we had a lot of young, inexperienced guys. Obviously we lost (Brian) Dawkins, a tremendous leader for us -- that hurt -- but on the other side we were able to get Peyton. So that's tremendous for us. We won in the first round of the playoffs -- just having that atmosphere, the way the fans were, just that excitement, I think that needs to be done around here for years to come. This organization is used to that.
"The only way you can keep going is to go up," he continued. "Last year we won the first round, now we've got to go towards a Super Bowl. That's the goal. That's a mindset that has to be instilled early. We've got to work. It's not going to be easy -- they're not going to give it to us. But I feel like we have the staff, the front office, players, supporting cast outside of football, the community, just the whole organization -- we're built to make a run for it. Why not us?"