Ashley Fletcher is only 20 months old, but she's seeing football up-close and personal. Ashley, the daughter of Bronco defensive end Simon Fletcher, a second-round pick from the University of Houston, has lived in a dorm at Houston and dined at the Cougars' training table, and now she is tagging along to Broncos' practices. It has been that way since, according to Fletcher, Ashley's mother called him one day last fall and said, "Come get her." Fletcher was later awarded custody of the child.
Says the 23-year-old Fletcher: "Ashley has brought out feelings I never knew I had. She has an ear infection, and I worried about it during meetings and practice.
"My first thought is to rush her to the hospital. Then I'll call my mother [in Bay City, Texas] and she'll explain that Ashley's just teething or something.
"When I'm feeling down from football, all I have to do is see her smile. She hugs me, and I know things can't be as bad as I think they are."