Dreessen counts childhood hero Elway as his boss

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ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) -- When he was a teenager growing up in Fort Morgan, Joel Dreessen would grab a football, dart into his backyard and pretend like so many other Colorado kids that he was John Elway.

Now, the 29-year-old tight end in his seventh NFL season counts his childhood hero as his boss, too.

Dreessen, a former Colorado State University standout, signed a three-year, $8.5 million free agent deal with the Broncos this spring after spending the last five seasons in Houston.

He and Jacob Tamme, who played in Indianapolis from 2008-11, are part of a revamped tight ends group that will give quarterback Peyton Manning big targets and extra protection as he makes his comeback in Denver after spending the last of his 14 seasons with the Colts sidelined by neck trouble.