4:18 PM MDT: Three hours before kickoff, and things already look better than last week. That’s simply because it’s sunny and clear, and my computer tells me its 80 degrees.
The stands are empty except for event staff making the final preparations before the gates open in a little while. Some coaches are jogging warmup laps around the field.
Players from both teams are starting to trickle out onto the field now. I’ll be back in a bit with some more notes and photos as the teams start to warm up.
5:32 PM MDT: Just got back up from the field. Jay Cutler and Patrick Ramsey joined Darrell Hackney on the field, warming up and throwing passes to the receivers.
Brett Kern, Sam Paulescu and Matt Prater came out in full uniform and began practicing. Kern and Paulescu are taking turns punting right now.
A good number of Green Bay players are on the field as well. Aaron Rodgers caught up with Kenny Peterson, a former Packer.
For tonight’s game, the Broncos are wearing white pants with blue jerseys while the Packers wear yellow pants with white jerseys.
5:49 PM MDT: Nearly all the players have left the field, heading back to their locker rooms to get into pads. A few Broncos are still on the field, including Kern, Prater and Paulescu as they practice field goals.
Mike Leach, Josh Mallard and Tony Scheffler are on the field as well, tossing a football around.
The gates opened at 5:00, so fans are scattered throughout the stands, and I’ve already seen several cheese heads.
5:55 PM MDT: Prater continues to boot field goals, and he just knocked back-to-back 53-yarders, from the left hash, straight through the uprights.
Packers kicker Mason Crosby has taken the field to practice some field goals of his own.
6:01 PM MDT: Now Kern and Paulescu have someone to punt to. Glenn Martinez, Marquay McDaniel and Eddie Royal have made their way out onto the field. Tyrone Poole is catching some punts as well.
Andre Hall, Samie Parker and Clifford Russell just jogged out of the tunnel as well.
We just got the list of players not expected to participate:
Hamza Abdullah, Anthony Alridge, Ryan Torain, Tom Nalen, Daniel Graham and Boss Bailey likely will not don the orange and blue tonight.
Ryan Grant, Charlie Peprah, DeShawn Wynn, A.J. Hawk, Scott Wells, Allen Barbre, Ryan Pickett, Justin Harrell and Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila will watch from the Packers sideline.
6:03 PM MDT: Cutler, along with Ramsey and Hackney, just jogged out of the tunnel amid some cheers from fans.
6:11 PM MDT: The rest of the receivers, tight ends and running backs are on the field, warming up in the north endzone.
Most of the Packers just ran out of the tunnel to begin their warmups.
6:20 PM MDT: I’ve got the starting lineup changes here for y’all. For the Broncos:
Marquand Manuel starts at SS Hamza Abdullah.
Jamie Winborn starts at SLB for Boss Bailey.
Casey Wiegmann starts at C for Tom Nalen.
Tony Scheffler starts at TE for Daniel Graham.
And for the Packers:
Brandon Jackson starts at RB for Ryan Grant.
Brandon Chillar starts at WLB for A.J. Hawk.
Josh Sitton starts at RG for Jason Spitz.
Jason Spitz starts at C for Scott Wells.
Colin Cole starts at LDT for Ryan Pickett.
6:35 PM MDT: Less than half an hour until kickoff, and the Packers just went back through the tunnel to their locker room.
The Broncos just broke their team huddle and headed into the locker room as well.
6:55 PM MDT: Just heard that there is a very slight chance of showers during the game, and the temperature should be in the mid 60s. Whether it rains or not, the weather is much better than last week.
7:03 PM MDT: The national anthem has been sung, the Broncos and Packers have taken the field, and it’s time for another night of football at INVESCO Field at Mile High.
7:05 PM MDT: Green Bay won the coin toss and they elected to receive the ball.