He is beaming these days because he became a father for the first time when his wife, Chandra, delivered twins Richard Jr. and Robinson, on April 10.

“Sometimes I just hold them and look at them and I’m just amazed. I thank God for everything. I’ve been blessed. It’s almost six years since I got hurt and I couldn’t even imagine the life I have right now. I didn’t think it could get any better, but it keeps getting better,’’ he said.

“It was a bad situation, but nobody can ever take away my joy. I am still smiling, just enjoying life. It was hard at first, but I got around to smelling the roses. I take every day and appreciate it. I could have died. Somebody was looking over me. I don’t take that for granted. Life is great. No matter what the situation is, I’m on cloud nine. Everything I want, I have right in front of me,’’ he said.

The former Jaguar has made a remarkable recovery since he was paralyzed from the waist down on Sept. 2, 2008 when a gunman shot him 14 times in a Riverside neighborhood.

He later developed a blood clot and his left leg was amputated above the knee. Several of the bullets are still in his body. He’s lost track of the number of surgeries he had. He puts the number at 14 or 15.

Suddenly, his football career was over and he had to deal with the physical and emotional trauma, but he has kept moving forward.

Collier, 32, got married in 2010 and even stood at the ceremony with the help of a prosthetic limb and body brace. He has driven as far as Louisiana by himself. He plays wheelchair basketball, did the Brooks Rehab Challenge Mile at the Gate River Run a year ago. Now his goal is doing the 5K. He makes motivational speeches and warns of the dangers of gun violence. He has a foundation, The Spirit Strong, and said, “I wanted the name to be emblematic about who I am and what I stand for after all I’ve been through.’’

And these days he works the night shift taking care of the twins.

“I change diapers and feed them and put them to sleep. They’re totally different. Richard is kind of high strung. Robinson is more laid back. The only time he cries is when he’s hungry. He sleeps most of the day and wakes up and just looks around,’’ he said.

He already has high goals for his boys.

“I expect them to go to college and make good grades and aim high in life and work hard to attain it,’’ he said.

He said he’ll support them if they want to play football, but won’t push it.

“I won’t be one of those crazy dads, but it would be cool to watch them play,’’ he said.

His NFL career was ended prematurely after playing in just nine games and starting one.

When he was shot, his wife was his fiancée and he credits her for sticking by him.

“I love that woman. Our relationship is so strong. It was a tough moment for both of us. We had to grow up really fast. It wasn’t puppy love. She’s been so supportive. She never let me get sad and encouraged me,’’ he said.