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Von Miller: 'I am a once-in-a-lifetime player too"

Don't bother asking Broncos' edge rusher Von Miller if Texans' J.J. Watt is any good. Of course he is. But Miller has no plans of letting Watt show up the Denver defense this weekend.

Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning, Broncos Country!

It's that time of year again, Von Miller notes.

Not the time we talk about how many sacks the edge rusher can have this year.

Not the time we question/admire his unique dances after pummeling a QB.

No, it's the time we ask No. 58 whether he agrees J.J. Watt, the super-human defensive end for the Houston Texans, is the best defensive player in the NFL. After all, Watt has 57 career sacks to Miller's 49, and Watt's overall PFF grade last season was 107.5 compared to Miller's 58.4. So Watt has got to be better, right?

Well, Miller has an answer for that tiring question - and basically it is no.

"You all ask me this every year. It is that week," Miller pointed out before adding that Watt is undoubtedly an "awesome talent."

"He's incredible, a once-in-lifetime player, but I'm a once in a lifetime player, too. I feel like I go out there, and I can play with the best of them," Miller said. "Luckily, I have a season coming up, and I get to lay it all out there and show everybody the type of Von that I can be. I want it to be about me this season. That's the way I'm going about it—me and the Broncos. That's where my mindset is at."

That may sound a bit conceited - "all about me this season" - but rest assured, Miller isn't planning to play this game by himself. He's just planning to take care of business no matter what. Given how that worked out last Friday, this mentality will be good for the entire defense.

"Game day is great for me. It doesn't matter if I'm playing or not," said Miller, adding that he'll play as much of preseason games as the coaches will allow. "I'm just going to play until they pull me out. That's always my mindset. I'm not looking for the sideline. I'm not waiting for anybody to pull me out."

There's nothing like game day. I'm going out there...going to give everybody a preview of what they'll see this season. -Von Miller

But the good news is that even when Miller is not on the field, his presence and leadership is strong, as rookie linebacker Shane Ray pointed out.

"I think Von is great in everything that he does," Ray said after Monday's practice. "To watch how he plays every down and every snap, [I'm] trying to build that to my own game. It is definitely very helpful for me."

Miller acknowledged that he has learned how to practice hard too and not just save it for game day, but games will always hold a special place in his motivated heart.

"There's nothing like game day. Game day always handles itself for me. I enjoy the games like nothing else," No. 58 said, adding there's no holding back, preseason or not. "I'm going out there. [I'm trying to] give everybody a preview of what they'll see this season."

One thing fans - and teammates - will not see this preseason is any FunkyVonSackDance contributions. That only happens once games start counting.

"It's already hard enough to come up with them," Miller said, admitting he does not practice them at home. "I'm going to save those for the regular season. I can't waste them on the preseason. I've got to use them when everybody's watching."

Don't worry, Von...we will be looking forward to many, many of those.

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