ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — Like many players, the disappointment of the playoff loss to the Colts in January kept DeMarcus Ware in the weight room. In a sleeveless shirt at the podium on Monday, Ware had clearly stayed in tip-top shape in the past few months.
But the offseason's not just been a grind for Ware. He's been off to see the world when he gets the chance, an opportunity to experience amazing places with his family. Ware said traveling the world is just what he does in his offseason, and this year they went to Hawaii and to Tokyo, where he found a calming return to something in the realm of obscurity far removed life in America.
"I think at the end of the day, your job brings a certain part with it, but sometimes it's a comfort also when you go to other places where you can be you," Ware said. "You can just be normal, you don't have to worry about too much and when I went to Tokyo, it was just fun. I was doing the things where I can just walk the streets or go eat at little pubs or wherever it is, without getting bothered."
For him, part of DeMarcus being DeMarcus was zipping around on a Segway and a mini scooter in Japan, which must be quite the sight for a man of his stature.
Though being approached back here in the states isn't something that bothers him, either, he said it was just a different feeling of normalcy — one experiences rarely outside of when he visits his grandparents in a small town in Alabama.
"I don't mind it at all, it's just a different feeling of just a normalcy and that's what you need," he added. "At the end of the day, people are respectful and you've got to take it. It's your job and certain things come with your job, you've got to be comfortable with it and just keep rolling."
Rolling into a new season
With the coming season comes reuniting with a familiar defensive coach in Wade Phillips, the Broncos' new Defensive Coordinator, who has helped Ware experience four of his best seasons.
The Broncos got back to work Monday, April 13, with the first phase of their offseason program.
"I know his defense already," Ware said of Phillips' 3-4 brand of defense. "I know how productive a lot of guys are in his defense, and I know how guys like Von and Malik and Wolfe and the new guys that they brought in with Antonio Smith, even the linebackers, everybody's going to be able to thrive to a new level because in this type of defense, everybody has to know each other's job. You never know who could be dropping, you never know who's rushing but at the end of the day, the offenses really have to be keen on who's bringing the pressure because this is a pressure defense."
With that return comes a return to outside linebacker for Ware, who sees it as not only fitting for his skill set but for his health.
"...It really hones things down to where in the meetings instead of having to worry about what the offenses are doing, we're figuring out maybe what the tackles are doing, what the guards and centers [are doing]," he said. "You can really hone in on the technique of the opposing offenses instead of having to worry about what you have to do if they're changing things. You can be more aggressive."
Aggression is the name of the game for the Broncos' defense this year, with the shift to a 3-4 defense like Wade Phillips' looking to unleash havoc on opponents, and in the overall team aspect, aggression is key in these first weeks, too.
"...'Iron sharpens iron.' That's where it all starts out—guys being there for each other and digging in," Ware said. "These OTAs, mini camps and training camp, that's where it starts. You build that."