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Champ Bailey: It feels good to have a great quarterback in Denver

Peyton Manning, Champ Bailey

Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning, right, speaks with cornerback Champ Bailey, left, before an NFL football game between the Broncos and the San Diego Chargers Monday, Oct. 15, 2012, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Lenny Ignelzi )


The Broncos are the AFC West champions, just as they were last year. But this year feels a lot different to Denver cornerback Champ Bailey.

Bailey said on 102.3 The Ticket that last season, it didn’t feel realistic to have high hopes of winning the Super Bowl. But this season, thanks to the arrival of Peyton Manning, players really believe there’s a chance they can go all the way.

“I think because the expectations are there,” Bailey said, via “When you have expectations to do things that are great, and then you do it, it feels real. Last year, nobody expected us to do anything. And then we started 1-4; we had a quarterback who had limited throwing ability, unconventional offense, whatever it may be. . . . But now you’ve got a great quarterback that’s done a lot of things in this league. It just feels good.”

Bailey didn’t mention Tim Tebow by name, but it’s no secret that the Broncos seriously upgraded the quarterback position when they signed Manning and traded Tebow. Previously in his career, Bailey has played on teams quarterbacked by Brad Johnson, Tony Banks, Patrick Ramsey, Jake Plummer, Jay Cutler, Kyle Orton and Tebow. It’s easy to see why he feels good sharing a locker room with Manning.