Q&A With Eric Decker & Jessie James
Broncos wide receiver and wife talk reality show, relationship and more
Broncos wide receiver Eric Decker and his wife, country singer Jessie James, have a new reality show that airs Sunday nights at 10 p.m. ET on E! The extremely light-hearted, open and funny couple, who tied the knot in June, recently spoke to SI.com’s Jimmy Traina about the show, their relationship and much more.
SI.com: You guys released a really funny spoof video a few months ago where Eric was, um …
James: A panty sniffer!
SI.com: Yes, and you were eating, um…
SI.com: Exactly. And the video was quickly was taken down. What happened there?
James: Eric’s agent made us take it down.
Decker: I realized, too, it probably wasn’t a great representation.
James: But it was FUNNY!
Decker: I didn’t need a headline that said, “Decker’s a Panty Sniffer.” Probably not the first thing you want to see about yourself on the Internet.
SI.com: Well, I posted it in Hot Clicks and several other sports blogs did, too, and everyone thought it was funny.
James: I know. I thought it showed a great side of Eric and his sense of humor and how funny he is. But whatever.
SI.com: How did the reality show come about?
James: There’s always been interest in doing a reality show for a while. But once people realized we were engaged, we got contacted by a production company, and they were interested in doing a wedding show because they thought we were funny. We met with a bunch of networks and fell in love with E! They’re a classy network, so that’s the direction we went in.
SI.com: Was it hard to convince Eric to do the reality show?
James: I definitely had to convince him a lot. You can say, “Oh, it would be fun to have a show,” but when comes down to it and they’re like, here you go, you really want to think about it. We thought about every little thing you can imagine, the pros, the cons, the boundaries. Things we wanted to happen, things we didn’t want to happen. I think after Eric met with the team and the crew, he felt very comfortable. Ultimately, we were in charge of what we would do and wouldn’t do.
SI.com: Eric, did you have to clear this with the Broncos?
Decker: After we decided to go forward with it, I did approach John Elway and coach John Fox and told him what I was gonna do and told them it wasn’t going to affect football because it was during my offseason and downtime in June. They were very cool with it. I just had to keep this away from football.
SI.com: You’re contract is up after this season and that seems to be one of the storylines on the show. Is the contract something you’re worried about?
Decker: No. Once we’re in season, all the focus is on the week in and week out of football, preparing for whoever we’re playing. We taped this show in the offseason, I just wanted to know what my situation was. As a football player, just starting a family, you want security. I’d like to know where I’m gonna be. That’s a question that’s up in the air and Jess and I just have to deal with it like any other professional couple.
SI.com: You guys are very sexual on the show.
James: Are we really?
SI.com: There are a lot of jokes and one-liners about sex, Eric being well-endowed, etc.
James: Well, he is!
Decker: Jess has some vulgar in her.
James: It is funny to watch back the shows because I do have a crass sense of humor. I have a little Chelsea Handler in me and I have a dirty sense of humor, which surprises people. But they’ll know it now.
SI.com: Eric, were you worried about the ribbing you’d get from teammates about things in the show?
Decker: Not at all. One of the things I love about Jess is that she’s open and there’s no hiding anything. I really respect that and love that about her. As for as the romantic or sexual stuff, I think a lot of girls think that way. I knew when I signed up that was gonna be part of it. I’m sure in a team meeting, they’re gonna have some jokes, but I’ll laugh with it. I’m not concerned.
SI.com: Was there anything that you refused to show or have filmed?
James: What was off limits for us was creating drama that wasn’t there. It’s not E! It’s a production company. E! just sees what’s given to them, so we had a separate production company and there was times when they wanted to ruffle some feathers or add to something and we would always say, this isn’t real life so there’s not gonna be drama created. We don’t fight and me and my family don’t fight, so it’s all real.
SI.com: In the season previews, you are seen crying and having a meltdown, though.
James: You have to wait for that, but there was no fighting or drama with anyone else. I was just emotional.
SI.com: It was just announced that Jessie is pregnant. Is that ruining one of the storylines for the season?
James: No. It was out of the blue. It is so weird and so crazy how it happened like this. Throughout the show you’re going to see my resistance to getting pregnant while Eric wanting to get pregnant. This was a surprise. I had every reason to want to wait three years and that was my plan, but it didn’t work out that way.
SI.com: You’re both on Twitter. Do you get a lot of negative tweets?
James: All the time. People are just ignorant, though. You’d think they would be a little more educated about the things they were talking about.
SI.com: For example?
James: Something that’s been really frustrating me lately are the “Eric’s been doing bad because they’re filming a show right now.” OK, if you had any sort of intelligence, you’d understand the stuff is not being filmed today. It was filmed four months ago.
Decker: After the first game, especially, I heard “Reality TV curse.” We’re completely different than other couples and athletes who’ve done reality shows. You can’t put people in a bubble or label people for what they do because it’s similar. I just brush it off.
SI.com: You’re both good-looking people. Do you get mad or jealous at some of the aggressive tweets the other one gets?
James. I don’t ever get mad. I think if I was married to a scumbag who made feel insecure, I probably would, but he is the most faithful human being. I could care less about girls. I get it. He’s sexy. And I understand that, trust me.
Decker: I usually think it’s flattering. I’ve gotten tweets that say, “Can I —- your wife?” I don’t get upset or get mad. If they said something about her character, I would get mad. But a lot of time, it’s something sexual, so it’s flattering.