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Elkhart native practicing with Broncos

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INDIANAPOLIS — One homegrown Hoosier and a few players and coaches who called Indiana home for a period of time will be involved in the Super Bowl XLVIII matchup between the Denver Broncos and the Seattle Seahawks.

The only player on either team that played high school football in Indiana is Nathan Palmer, from Elkhart, who is currently on the Denver Broncos’ practice squad. Palmer, a wide receiver, is a 2007 graduate of Elkhart Central High School where he was a first team all-state choice as a senior after gaining honorable mention recognition the prior year. Indianapolis Colts fans may remember Palmer, as he was a member of the Colts in 2012. Palmer started as a San Francisco 49er in 2012 before becoming a Colt. For most of the 2013 season, Palmer was a member of the Miami Dolphins until he was cut from the team on Dec. 23. The Denver Broncos then signed him to their practice squad shortly thereafter.

Another player for the Denver Broncos called Indianapolis his home for almost 15 years. That player, of course, is Peyton Manning, who is making his third appearance in the Super Bowl in his career, and his first as a Bronco. Manning is attempting to become the first quarterback to start and win a Super Bowl with two different teams. He was, and still is, very involved with the Indianapolis community. While in Indy, he started the Peyback Foundation, which functions to help disadvantaged children. He also created the Peyback Classic, an event at which high school football games are played at Lucas Oil Stadium between IHSAA member schools. In 2007, St. Vincent Hospital in Indianapolis renamed its children’s hospital to “Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital at St. Vincent” after a donation of an undisclosed amount from Manning and his wife.

Six other players and three coaches between the two teams have ties to Indiana:

Denver Broncos

>> David Bruton (Player)

#30, 5th year with Denver as a safety

University of Notre Dame (2005-08)


>> Jim Bob Cooter (Coach)

5th year of NFL coaching overall, 1st year with Denver as an offensive assistant

Indianapolis Colts Staff (2009-2011)


>> Winston Justice (Player) 

#77, 8th season overall, 1st with Denver as an offensive tackle.

Indianapolis Colts (2012)


>> Dave Magazu (Coach)

11th year of NFL coaching overall, 3rd year with Denver as the offensive line coach

Indiana State University offensive coordinator (1990-91)

Ball State University offensive coordinator (1985-86)


>> Shaun Phillips (Player)

#90, 10th season overall, 1st with Denver as a linebacker

Purdue University (2000-03)


>> Jay Rodgers (Coach)

5th year of NFL coaching overall, 2nd with Denver as the defensive line coach

Played collegiately at Indiana University (1996-98)


>> Jacob Tamme (Player) 

#84, 6th season overall, 2nd with Denver as a tight end

Indianapolis Colts (2008-2011)


Seattle Seahawks

>> Cliff Avril (Player)

#56, 6th season overall, 1st with Seattle as a defensive end

Purdue University (2000-03)


>> Golden Tate (Player)

#81, 4th season with Seattle as a wide receiver

University of Notre Dame (2007-09)

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