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Broncos' T.J. Ward (ankle) 'good' to play in Super Bowl

Denver's top-ranked defense won't be shorthanded heading into its Super Bowl matchup with Cam Newton and the Panthers' juggernaut offense.

Broncos safety T.J. Ward sat out some of the AFC Championship Game after aggravating an ankle sprain. However, NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport reported that Ward is 'good' to play in Super Bowl 50 on Feb. 7.

Regardless of the severity of Ward's injury, he made it clear following the win over the Patriots that there was no way he'd miss the Super Bowl, not with the media, opponents, world, etc. continuing to disrespect the Broncos.

"Go ahead. We feed off of that," Ward said. "Keep us as the underdog (against) whoever wins (the NFC Championship). Tell us how bad we are and how we can't cover and stop 'this person,' and I bet we win the Super Bowl."

Nobody's doubting the superiority of the Broncos' defense, which batteredTom Brady all day long in Denver. However, a Ward-less secondary was exposed by tight end Rob Gronkowski up the seams late in Sunday's contest. Having the safety healthy going into the Super Bowl protects against a copycat performance from Panthers tight end Greg Olsen.

In other injury news Tuesday:

  1. The optimism around Thomas Davis' return to the Panthers' starting lineup is palpable. After breaking his arm during the NFC Championship Game, the Carolina linebacker guaranteed that he would play in the Super Bowl. On Tuesday, coach Ron Rivera said on SiriusXM NFL Radio that Davis is "healing up nicely. We'll see how he is at the end of the week, but I would not bet against Thomas Davis."

Rivera added that running back Fozzy Whittaker tweaked his sprained anke on Sunday, but should be fine. The Panthers will also keep safety Roman Harper out of contact drills as he recovers a scratched eye he suffered on Sunday.

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