It seems like just yesterday that Denver Broncos fans were basking in the fantastic and deserved glow of winning Super Bowl 50.
But it all happens so rapidly, and it is once again.
Believe me, as someone who is in his 39th year with the Broncos (these last three as a consultant doing things like this column), it is amazing to watch how rapidly it all goes by.
This week we all checked this website and other sources for news from the NFL's Annual Meeting in Boca Raton.
We have seen the photos with executives like John Elway, the annual coaches photo with Gary Kubiak (the first time in NFL history that the two respective photos included a franchise's primary quarterback roster for a decade of its play, with Elway in one and Kubiak in the other).
All smiles by all participants, as is traditional in class pictures.
But the smiles will fade as soon as all the respective aircraft land in the 32 cities that the NFL teams call home.
Free agency will continue.
Draft preparations will take center stage.
Executive Vice President of Football Operations/General Manager John Elway and Head Coach Gary Kubiak are in Boca Raton, Fla. for the NFL Annual Meeting. (Photos by Andrew Mason)
Head coaches and their staffs have scheduled offseason camps as allowed by NFL bylaws, and that planning will begin in earnest, too.
Offseason lifting and conditioning programs are right around the corner — all of them beginning within the next couple of weeks.
And off we go.
Every business has these times. Think about how many times you have walked through a department store and noticed that the spring wear is already on display, even though the temperature at the time gave no indication of daffodils and crocuses.
For some of us, we can remember the days when there was no "Black Friday" — at least, it was reserved as an internal term for those in retail — and Christmas displays actually were not out in October!
The NFL is the same way, though, and that is OK. It is a product of everything moving as fast as possible toward the goal of success, with each team quickly adjusting and responding to the knowledge (and sometimes rumors) of what its rivals are doing.
It is all part of the game.
Most sports fans these days are in the midst of fascination with the NCAA basketball Final Four, and many are just now starting to ask themselves if they will go to Opening Day for their local baseball team.
NFL executives and coaches are focused on Opening Day, too, of course, but not the same one that involves throwing out the first pitch. With the conclusion of the NFL Annual Meeting, the new football season is flying toward us, and preparations will intensify from here.
Personally, I have always loved that about this time of year. Everyone is undefeated, and the promise of success exists in every player, coach and fan.
It's basketball, hockey and baseball time, but bubbling underneath the surface the new football season will come to a boil faster than many realize, and the joy of anticipation is driving our game from this point forward.