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Thursday, May 9, 2013
Peyton Manning a prank master

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ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- As evidenced by the proliferating number of pranks he's pulling, Peyton Manning has gotten comfortable in Denver as he enters his second season with the Broncos.

His teammates warn that Manning might not want to get too cozy, although none of them has gotten back at the productive prankster.

"I think a lot of guys are going to jump at that opportunity. So we've just got to plan something out real good for him and get him when it counts," Manning's latest victim, right tackle Orlando Franklin, said Wednesday.

Franklin I wasn't really paying attention to it. That was stupid on my behalf, but like I said, I'm looking forward to getting those guys back.

-- Broncos right tackle Orlando Franklin

Manning had gathered more than two dozen of his teammates for a trip to the Yankees-Rockies game Tuesday night and engineered the gag in which receiver Eric Decker sneaked up on Franklin and smashed the 330-pound offensive lineman in the face with a shaving cream pie while he was doing a live TV interview.

Just about all of his teammates except Manning, who was surveying the scene like George Washington crossing the Delaware, were recording the interview on their cellphones when Decker decked him from behind.

Franklin tweeted afterward that Manning was the mastermind of the prank and pledged payback, writing "revenge will be mine." He included a picture of himself after Decker hit him in the face with the pie.

Decker told the NFL Network on Thursday that because it was the first baseball game Franklin had attended, he wanted to "welcome" him to the sport by smashing the pie in his face, which is a prank that has become a tradition among Major League Baseball players when teammates are interviewed on TV after starring in a victory.

Last month, Decker was the victim of a gag when Manning tricked him into thinking he owed $3,000 to cover the costs of working out with him at Duke University.

Decker said it took him 15 minutes to realize that the bill, complete with state taxes, was fake.

He, too, vowed to get back at Manning.

"There's some stuff in the works," Decker said Wednesday, upon returning to Denver. "I got some intel from some people on his side."

Franklin said he uncharacteristically let his guard down Tuesday night after he'd been drafted to talk on TV about attending his first baseball game.

"I wasn't really paying attention to it. That was stupid on my behalf, but like I said, I'm looking forward to getting those guys back," Franklin said.

On the other hand, he's glad he was finally the foil for the quarterback he protects on game day.

"Well, he's pretty much gotten everybody on the offense," Franklin said. "So I was one of those guys -- it was bound to happen sooner or later. I'm glad that we got it out of the way."

One of Manning's favorite tricks is befuddling teammates by switching their iPhone language to Chinese.

"I actually caught him in the middle of it," tight end Joel Dreessen said Wednesday. "I was in the shower, and I get back to my locker, and he was standing at my locker with a towel. I was like, 'What the [heck] is he doing?' He was trying to change the language on my iPhone."

Dreessen plotted his revenge and actually carried it out -- before having second thoughts.

"I tried to get him back. He was charging his iPad at my locker, so I set a dog-barking alarm to go off at like 2 in the morning," said Dreessen, certain that the meticulous Manning would take his digital playbook home with him like he always did.

He started to regret what he'd done, but not because he feared Manning would quit throwing to him.

"I got home that night and I was like, 'Man, he's got twin babies, and I don't want to wake his wife up.' So I totally chickened out and I texted him that night, 'Hey, I set your iPad to go off at 2 in the morning. Turn it off.' He's like, 'Actually, I didn't bring it home,'" Dreessen recounted.

"So he shoves it in my stomach the next day: 'Hey, take this alarm off of there.' So, I turned it off. I chickened out, though. I regret that; I should have left it on."

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.