Column: Decker jacked up for camp, ’13 season

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By Michael Hicks

LITTLETON — Eric Decker is excited. That may not necessarily be the norm for an NFL player with training camp a little more than a week away, but the 26-year-old Denver Broncos wide receiver has plenty of reasons to be excited.
He married country music singer Jessie James last month, he’s got a reality TV show set to debut later this summer on the E! network, and his team is pegged to be a Super Bowl contender by everyone. What’s there not to be excited about?
Decker was in Littleton last week as part of the ProCamps Worldwide football camp, along with fellow Broncos wide receiver Demaryius Thomas. The camp drew more than 240 campers to the two-day festivities at Littleton Public Schools Stadium. It not only was a chance for Decker to settle down a bit from his hectic schedule, but to also give back to the community.
“It’s pretty neat. That’s what I love about being an athlete. You know you’ve worked your way up, but you’re not showing it off. It’s your way of giving back,” said Decker, who had 84 catches for 1,064 yards and 13 TDs in 2012. “We did the right thing and that’s what we want for each of these kids. They have the same abilities to do what we’ve done whether it’s be an NFL player or to be a doctor or something important in our society. The bottom line is to put a smile on their face.”
The Broncos could put smiles on a lot of people’s faces this year with the franchise’s third Super Bowl title. Denver was close to accomplishing that feat last year, going 13-3 during the regular season and securing the No. 1 seed in the AFC playoffs. But things took a turn for the worst on a bitterly-cold Saturday night at Sports Authority Field at Mile High last January. And things around Dove Valley have been anything but calm since that disheartening 38-35 double-overtime AFC Divisional playoff loss to eventual Super Bowl champion Baltimore.
There was the signing of free-agent wide receiver Wes Welker, formerly of the New England Patriots, to a two-year deal.
There was the contract snafu involving defensive end Elvis Dumervil that led to his release and eventual signing with those very same Ravens.
And there’s been the recent DUI arrests of personnel men Matt Russell and Tom Heckert.
The first two were football moves that directly impacted the makeup of the Broncos’ lineup. The latter is a front-office matter that Decker said shouldn’t affect what happens on the playing field.
“I don’t think so. It’s a great organization. They’ll find the merit to handle it,” Decker said. “As players again our focus is on getting ourselves ready for a great season and doing something special.”
Like win Super Bowl XLVIII on Feb. 2 at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J.

Contact Michael Hicks at sports@evergreenco.com or 303-933-2233, ext. 15.