Plenty of players said after the team's 24-10 win over the Carolina Panthers that it was Saturday night's tremendous pair of speeches by quarterback Peyton Manning and pass-rusher DeMarcus Ware that lit the Broncos on fire.
Asked if Manning shed tears, Marshall acknowledged: "It was close."
Ware also addressed the team before the AFC Championship Game and surprised his teammates by having Denver's past Lombardis displayed in front of the team.
"The last two team meetings we've had -- leading up to the AFC Championship and then this week -- have been moving meetings," Daniels said. "I was very moved. I know it meant a ton to Peyton and to DeMarcus, a guy who's never been here before. First-ballot Hall of Famers -- I'm so happy for him."
Said guard Evan Mathis, who went from toiling with the Eagles to becoming a world champion on Sunday: "Peyton got up and it was a good talk and he was serious and funny. He said a lot of good things. DeMarcus got up there -- DeMarcus is a very serious and emotional speaker. We were ready to go and it got us even more ready to go."
Defensive end Antonio Smith has endured plenty this week, learning that his father, Marty Christopher Williams, passed away while serving a life sentence in jail.
"I know to me personally, they spoke right to the heart," Smith said. "One thing that really stuck out to me is how Peyton kind of was getting broke up and kind of emotional about it and then also D-Ware said that neither one of us had to worry about anything going wrong on the field because, if one side slipped, you got a horde of angels behind you: And that's the defense. And if the other side doesn't do good, you know, the protection for that horde of angels: that's the offense. I think the guys really took that to heart and believed and had faith that nothing was going to stop us from being Super Bowl champions today."