Red Zone

New Bronco Ryan Lilja says he wanted to play for the Chiefs

Updated: 2013-08-02T12:56:47Z

By ADAM TEICHER

The Kansas City Star

— Former Chiefs offensive lineman Ryan Lilja had his say to reporters in Denver after signing with the Broncos.

He left no doubt he had been interested in ending his retirement and playing for the Chiefs.

“I had my eye kind of on another team closer to home,’’ said Lilja, a Kansas City area native. “That was really the only one I was looking at and thought was a possibility.’’

Then the Broncos lost center Dan Koppen early in training camp with a season ending injury. They called Lilja, who was interested in reuniting with quarterback Peyton Manning, a former teammate from their days with the Indianapolis Colts.

But Lilja said after talking with the Chiefs last winter about postponing his retirement, he would have been happy playing again in Kansas City.

“You’d have to ask them that,’’ Lilja said when asked why it didn’t work out with the Chiefs. “I don’t know the answer to that. We had some dialogue early on.’’

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