Denver Broncos
Denver Broncos
Current season
Established 1960
Play in Sports Authority Field at Mile High
Denver, Colorado
Headquartered in the Paul D. Bowlen Memorial Centre
Dove Valley, Colorado
Denver Broncos helmet
Denver Broncos logo
Helmet Logo
League/conference affiliations

American Football League (1960–1969)

  • Western Division (1961–1969)

National Football League (1970–present)

Current uniform
AFCW-Uniform-DEN.PNG
Team colors Navy, Orange, White

              

Mascot "Thunder II" (live horse)
"Miles" (costume suit)
Personnel
Owner(s) Pat Bowlen
Chairman Pat Bowlen
CEO Pat Bowlen
President Joe Ellis
General manager Brian Xanders
Head coach John Fox
Team history
  • Denver Broncos (1960–present)
Team nicknames
Orange Crush (1977–1979 defense)
Championships
League championships (2)
Conference championships (6)
  • AFC: 1977, 1986, 1987, 1989, 1997, 1998
Division championships (10)
  • AFC West: 1977, 1978, 1984, 1986, 1987, 1989, 1991, 1996, 1998, 2005
Playoff appearances (17)
  • NFL: 1977, 1978, 1979, 1983, 1984, 1986, 1987, 1989, 1991, 1993, 1996, 1997, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2004, 2005
Home fields
  • Mile High Stadium (1960–2000)
  • Sports Authority Field at Mile High (2011–present)
    • formerly known as Invesco Field at Mile High (2001–2011)

The Denver Broncos are a professional American football team based in Denver, Colorado. They are currently members of the West Division of the American Football Conference (AFC) in the National Football League (NFL). The Broncos began play in 1960 as a charter member of the American Football League and joined the NFL as part of the AFL–NFL merger of 1970.

The team is one of the most successful teams in NFL history, having won two Super Bowls and six AFC Championships. They play at Sports Authority Field at Mile High, and have four players in the Pro Football Hall of Fame: John Elway, Floyd Little, Gary Zimmerman, and Shannon Sharpe.

Contents

Franchise history

1960–1969: AFL era

The Denver Broncos were founded on August 14, 1959 when minor league baseball owner Bob Howsam was awarded an American Football League charter franchise.[1] The Broncos won the first-ever American Football League game over the Boston Patriots, 13–10, on September 9, 1960. On August 5, 1967, they became the first ever AFL team to defeat an NFL team after beating the Detroit Lions, 13–7, in a preseason game.[1] However, the Broncos were largely not successful in the 1960s, compiling a record of 39–97–4 in the league.[2] Denver came close to losing its franchise in 1965, but a local ownership group took control that year and began to rebuild the team.[3] However, the team's first superstar, "Franchise" Floyd Little, due to his signing in 1967 and his Pro Bowl efforts on and off the field, was instrumental in keeping the team in Denver. They were the only original AFL team never to have played in the title game during the upstart league's 10-year history, as well as the only original AFL team never to have a winning season while a member of the AFL.[4]

1970–1982: "Orange Crush"

In 1972, the Broncos hired former Stanford University coach John Ralston as their head coach.[5] The following year, 1973, he was UPI's choice as AFC Coach of the Year after Denver achieved its first-ever-winning season at 7–5–2. In five seasons with the Broncos, Ralston guided the team to winning seasons three times, the franchise's only three winning seasons up to that time. Even though Ralston finished the 1976 season with a winning record of 9–5, the team, as was the case in Ralston’s previous winning seasons, still failed to qualify for the playoffs. Following the 1976 season several prominent players publicly voiced their discontent with Ralston’s leadership which soon led to his dismissal by the team owner.

Rookie coach, Red Miller, along with the Orange Crush Defense (a nickname originating in the early '70's, also the brand of a popular orange-flavored soft drink) and aging quarterback Craig Morton, promptly took the Broncos to their first playoff appearance in 1977, and ultimately first Super Bowl, where they were defeated by the Dallas Cowboys, 27–10.[6]

In 1981 Broncos owner Gerald Phipps, who had purchased the team in May 1961 from the original owner Bob Howsam, sold the team to Canadian Financier, Edgar Kaiser, Jr., grandson of shipbuilding industrialist Henry J. Kaiser.[7][8]

1983–1998: John Elway era

Quarterback John Elway, who played college football at Stanford, arrived in 1983. Originally drafted by the Baltimore Colts as the first pick of the draft, Elway proclaimed that he would shun football in favor of baseball (he was drafted by the New York Yankees to play center field and was also a pitching prospect), unless he was traded to a selected list of other teams, which included Denver.[9] Prior to Elway, Denver had over 24 different starting quarterbacks in its 23 seasons to that point.[10] Elway would remain the quarterback through five Super Bowls, with the Broncos winning two of them. The Broncos lost Super Bowl XXI to the New York Giants, 39–20; Super Bowl XXII to the Washington Redskins, 42–10; and Super Bowl XXIV to the San Francisco 49ers, 55–10, the latter of which is, to date, the most lopsided scoring differential in Super Bowl history.

In 1995, the Broncos debuted a new head coach, Mike Shanahan, and a new rookie running back, Terrell Davis. In 1996, the Broncos were the top seed in the AFC with a 13–3 record, dominating most of the teams that year. The fifth-seeded Jacksonville Jaguars, however, upset the Broncos, 30–27 in the divisional round of the playoffs, ending the Broncos' 1996 run. During the 1997 season, both Elway and Davis would help guide the Broncos to their first Super Bowl victory, a 31–24 win over the defending Super Bowl champion Green Bay Packers in Super Bowl XXXII. Although Elway completed only 12 of 22 passing attempts, throwing one interception and no touchdowns (he did, however, have a rushing touchdown), Davis rushed for 157 yards and a Super Bowl–record three touchdowns to earn the Super Bowl MVP Award – this while overcoming a severe migraine headache that caused him blurred vision.[11] The Broncos repeated as Super Bowl champions the following season, defeating the Atlanta Falcons (led by Elway's longtime head coach Dan Reeves) in Super Bowl XXXIII, 34–19. Elway was named Super Bowl MVP, completing 18 of 29 passes for 336 yards, with an 80-yard touchdown to wide receiver Rod Smith and one interception.

1999–2008: post-Elway era

John Elway retired following the 1998 season, and Brian Griese started at quarterback for the next four seasons. After a 6–10 record in 1999, the Broncos recovered in 2000, earning a Wild Card playoff berth, but losing to the Baltimore Ravens. After missing the playoffs the following two seasons, former Arizona Cardinals' quarterback Jake Plummer replaced Griese in 2003, and would lead the Broncos to two straight 10–6 seasons, earning Wild Card playoff berths both years. However, the Broncos went on the road to face the Indianapolis Colts in back-to-back seasons and were blown out by more than 20 points in each game, allowing a combined 90 points.

After losing the 2005 season opener, the Broncos won five straight games. Plummer and the Broncos clinched their first AFC West division title since 1998 on December 24, and finished with an 8–0 home record and a 13–3 overall record. The Broncos entered the playoffs for the third consecutive year with the momentum of a four-game winning streak. After a first round bye, the Broncos defeated the defending Super Bowl champion New England Patriots, 27–13, denying New England from becoming the first NFL team ever to win three consecutive Super Bowl championships. The Broncos' playoff run came to an end next week, after losing at home to the Pittsburgh Steelers in the AFC Championship Game, 34–17. Denver turned the ball over four times and were outscored in the first half, 24–3. The Steelers went on to win Super Bowl XL.

The Broncos' defense began the first five games of the 2006 season allowing only one touchdown, an NFL record, but struggled down the season stretch. Plummer led the team to a 7–2 record, only to lose two straight and be replaced by rookie quarterback Jay Cutler. Cutler went 2–3 as a starter, and the Broncos finished with a 9–7 record, losing the tiebreaker to the Kansas City Chiefs for the final playoff spot. Cutler's first full season as a starter in 2007 became the Broncos' first losing season since 1999, with a 7–9 record.

The 2008 season ended in a 52–21 loss at the San Diego Chargers, giving the Broncos an 8–8 record and their third straight season out of the playoffs. Mike Shanahan, the longest-tenured and most successful head coach in Broncos' franchise history, was fired on December 30, 2008, after 14 seasons.[12]

2009–present: post-Mike Shanahan era

On January 11, 2009, two weeks after Mike Shanahan was fired, the Broncos hired former New England Patriots' offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels as the team's new head coach.[13] Three months later, the team acquired quarterback Kyle Orton as part of a trade that sent Jay Cutler to the Chicago Bears.

Under McDaniels and Orton, the Broncos jumped out to a surprising 6–0 start in 2009. However, the team lost eight of their next ten games, finishing 8–8 for a second consecutive season and missing the playoffs. After the season, Pro Bowl wide receiver Brandon Marshall was traded to the Miami Dolphins, and the Broncos set a new franchise record for losses in a single season, with a 4–12 record in 2010.[14] On December 6, 2010, McDaniels was fired following a combination of the team's poor record and the fallout from a highly-publicized videotaping scandal. Running backs coach Eric Studesville was named interim coach for the remaining four games of the 2010 season.[15] He chose to start rookie first-round draft choice Tim Tebow at quarterback for the final three games.

After the season, Joe Ellis was promoted from the Chief Operating Officer to team president, while John Elway was named the team's Executive Vice President of Football Operations on January 5, 2011. In this capacity, Elway will report to Ellis and will oversee the position held by the General Manager (Brian Xanders) and head coach positions. On January 13, 2011, the Broncos hired former Carolina Panthers' coach John Fox as the team's 14th head coach.[16][17]

After a 1–4 start to the 2011 season, it was announced on October 11, 2011, that Tim Tebow would replace Kyle Orton as the Broncos' starting quarterback. In his first start, Tebow would lead the Broncos in a come-from-behind 18–15 overtime victory over the Miami Dolphins, after being down 15–0 with under three minutes to go in the game. [18] Tebow's first home victory of the season was another fourth quarter comeback, in a 17–13 win over the New York Jets in Week 11. This improved the Broncos' record to 5–5.

Rivalries

Kansas City Chiefs

  • First met in 1960 (with the Chiefs based in Dallas from 1960 through 1962 and named the Dallas Texans)
  • 55–47 Kansas City leads series (Denver leads playoffs 1–0)
  • Signature moment: The Kansas City Chiefs were victimized by eight of John Elway's legendary fourth quarter game-winning drives, the most he had against one NFL team. Perhaps the most notable comeback occurred on October 4, 1992, at Mile High Stadium. The Broncos were trailing the Chiefs 19–6 late in the 4th quarter, and hadn't scored a touchdown in the previous 12 quarters. After the two-minute warning, Elway threw a 25-yard touchdown pass to Mark Jackson to pull within 19–13, with 1:55 remaining. After the Chiefs subsequently went three-and-out, the Broncos returned a punt to the Chiefs' 27-yard line. Three plays later, Elway tossed a 12-yard touchdown pass to Vance Johnson with 38 seconds remaining that gave the Broncos a thrilling 20–19 comeback win. However, the Chiefs got their revenge in the 1992 season finale, with an emphatic 42–20 win at Arrowhead Stadium that denied the Broncos a playoff berth.
  • Signature moment: Former San Francisco 49ers' quarterback Joe Montana finished his career in Kansas City, and led the Chiefs to a memorable comeback at Mile High Stadium on October 17, 1994.
  • Signature moment: After suffering a last-second defeat at Kansas City's Arrowhead Stadium in the 1997 regular season, Denver redeemed themselves with a 14–10 win at Kansas City in the playoffs, eventually winning Super Bowl XXXII.
  • Signature moment: November 14, 2010 – The Broncos stormed to a 35–0 lead against the visiting Chiefs before the second half, leading to a 49–29 victory. The Chiefs head coach, Todd Haley, was distraught enough after the game that he refused to shake the hand of then-Broncos coach, Josh McDaniels. Tim Tebow threw his first NFL pass for a touchdown.

Oakland Raiders

  • First met in 1960
  • 59–42–2 Oakland leads series (Playoffs tied 1–1) (from 1982 through 1994, the Raiders were based in Los Angeles)
  • Signature moment: The Broncos beat the Raiders in 1977 to win their first AFC Championship.
  • Signature moment: September 26, 1988 – The Broncos led the Raiders 24–0 at halftime on Monday Night Football, but the Raiders sparked one of the largest comebacks in NFL history, winning 30–27 in overtime. After serving as an offensive assistant under Dan Reeves in the mid-80s (and again in the early-90s), Mike Shanahan's first season as an NFL head coach was with the Raiders in 1988, before he was fired four games into the 1989 season.[19]
  • Signature moment: In the 1993 season finale, the Raiders scored an overtime victory against the Broncos to make the playoffs, setting up another game between the two in Los Angeles the following week. Outspoken Raiders' owner Al Davis commented before the playoff game that the Broncos were "scared to death of us."[20] Despite the Broncos' protests, the Raiders made their owner's words stand up, winning 42–24.
  • Signature moment: In 1995, former Raiders coach Mike Shanahan, who was at the time in an ongoing contract dispute with Al Davis, became the Broncos' new head coach, heightening an already contentious AFC West rivalry. Prior to Shanahan's arrival in Denver, the Broncos had lost 13 out of 15 games against the Raiders from 1988–1994, but during Shanahan's 14 seasons as the Broncos' head coach, the Broncos went 21–7 against Oakland.
  • Signature moment: September 16, 2007 – As Raiders kicker Sebastian Janikowski kicked what would have been a game-winning field goal during overtime, Broncos head coach Mike Shanahan had called a timeout right before Janikowski made it. After the timeout, Janikowski again attempted the field goal, but this time it hit the upright and was no good. Denver then proceeded to win the game on a field goal by kicker Jason Elam.[21]
  • Signature moment: October 24, 2010 – The Raiders score 38 points in the first half in Denver. Oakland goes on to beat the Broncos 59–14, not only making it the most points scored in a single game in the Raiders' franchise history, but also tying the highest point total that the Broncos have allowed in a single game, since a 59–7 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs in 1963.[22]

San Diego Chargers

Denver Broncos playing against the San Diego Chargers
  • First met in 1960 (with the Chargers based in Los Angeles in 1960 prior to relocating to San Diego in 1961)
  • 54–48–1 Denver leads series (No playoff matches)
  • Signature moment: November 17, 1985 – Dennis Smith blocks two consecutive field goal attempts, and San Diego takes the ball to the Broncos 24 in the first overtime possession. Dennis Smith blocks a Bob Thomas field goal attempt only to see the block brought back by a time-out Denver had mistakenly called. Thomas tries a second attempt and this try is also blocked by Smith and returned by Louis Wright for a 60 yard touchdown and the win.[23]
  • Signature moment: September 14, 2008 – With 52 seconds remaining in the game, the Chargers were leading 38–31. The Broncos hiked the ball on 2nd & Goal from the Chargers 1-yard line. Jay Cutler began to roll out to the right and before he brought his arm forward he fumbled the ball, which was then recovered by Tim Dobbins of the Chargers. However, referee Ed Hochuli had called the play dead as he believed it to be an incomplete pass, so the ball was returned to the Broncos at the 10 yard line (the spot where the ball hit the ground after the incomplete pass). Two plays later, on 4th & Goal from the 4, Jay Cutler completed a touchdown pass to rookie Eddie Royal, bringing the score to 38–37. Instead of kicking a PAT to tie the game and most likely send it to overtime, Coach Mike Shanahan opted for the 2-point conversion. Jay Cutler completed the conversion with another pass to Royal, giving the Broncos the controversial 39–38 victory. However, San Diego would have their revenge with an emphatic 52–21 win in the 2008 season finale, denying the Broncos a place in the playoffs.[24]

Cleveland Browns

  • First met in 1971
  • 18–5 Denver leads series (Denver leads playoffs 3–0)
  • Signature moment: Over three playoffs in four years, Cleveland lost to Denver in the AFC Championship game. In January 1987, after the 1986 season, John Elway led "The Drive" to secure a tie in the waning moments at old Cleveland Municipal Stadium; the Broncos would go on to win in overtime. In January 1988, at Mile High Stadium, after the 1987 season, Cleveland nearly had its own comeback drive, but Earnest Byner's costly fumble saved the day for Denver. The game after the 1989 season was not as close, easily won by the Broncos.

New England Patriots

  • Met in the first-ever AFL regular season game on September 9, 1960, with the Broncos defeating the Boston Patriots 13–10[25]
  • 25–16 Denver leads series (Denver leads playoffs 2–0)
  • Signature moment: January 4, 1987 – In the divisional round of the 1986–87 NFL playoffs, the Broncos defeated the Patriots 22–17 at Mile High Stadium, in John Elway's first career playoff win.[26][27] During the John Elway era, the Broncos went 11–0 against the Patriots, including the playoffs.
  • Signature moment: November 17, 1996 – The Broncos routed the Patriots 34–8 at Foxboro Stadium. This was the game where Shannon Sharpe infamously ranted on a sideline phone: "Mr. President, call in the National Guard! Send as many men as you can spare! Because we are killing the Patriots! They need emergency help!"[28]
  • Signature moment: November 3, 2003 – The Patriots were trailing 24–23 with 2:49 remaining. Backed up to their own 1-yard line and facing a punt, Patriots head coach Bill Belichick ordered an intentional safety that gave the Broncos a 26–23 lead. After a free kick backed up the Broncos to their own 15-yard line, they immediately went three and out. After a Broncos punt gave the Patriots great field position at their own 42-yard line with 2:15 remaining, New England drove 58 yards in 6 plays, culminating in an 18-yard touchdown pass from Tom Brady to David Givens with 35 seconds remaining that gave the Patriots a 30–26 win.[29]
  • Signature moment: January 14, 2006 – In the divisional round of the 2005–06 NFL playoffs, Champ Bailey made a game-changing 100-yard interception off Tom Brady that gave the Broncos a 27–13 win over the Patriots. This not only gave the Broncos their first (and, to date, their only) playoff win since John Elway's retirement, but this also ended the Patriots NFL-record 10-game postseason winning streak, and gave Tom Brady his first playoff loss as well.[30]
  • Signature moment: October 11, 2009 – The Broncos were trailing 17–10 with 9:59 remaining in the 4th quarter. Backed up to their own 2-yard line, Kyle Orton led the Broncos on a 12-play, 98-yard drive, culminating in an 11-yard touchdown pass from Orton to Brandon Marshall to tie the game at 17 with 5:21 remaining. The Broncos won the overtime coin toss, and subsequently marched down the field, with Matt Prater kicking a game-winning 41-yard field goal for a Broncos 20–17 overtime win. This was then-head coach Josh McDaniels' first game against his former team and mentor, Bill Belichick.[31] This game also dropped Tom Brady's personal record against Denver to 1–6.

Logos and uniforms

Denver Broncos uniform set from 1968–1996. The team briefly wore orange pants with the away jerseys between 1969–71 and 1978–79.
Denver Broncos current uniform combination. The team usually wears the navy blue pants for select prime time and late-season home games.

The navy blue and orange jerseys will swap roles for 2012 – orange will become the primary home jersey color, while navy will switch to alternate designation.[32]

Broncos alternate logo (1997–present)

When the Broncos debuted in 1960, their original uniforms drew as much attention as their play on the field. It featured white and mustard yellow jerseys, with contrasting brown helmets, brown pants, and vertically striped socks.[33]

Two years later, the team unveiled a new logo featuring a bucking horse, and changed their team colors to orange, royal blue and white. The 1962 uniform, designed by Laura North-Allen, consisted of white pants, orange helmets, and either orange or white jerseys.

In 1968, the Broncos debuted a design that became known as the "Orange Crush." Their logo was redesigned so that the horse was coming out of a "D." Additionally, the helmets were changed to royal blue, with thin stripes placed onto the sleeves, and other minor modifications were added. From 1969–1971, and again from 1978–1979, the team wore orange pants with their white jerseys.

The Broncos wore their white jerseys at home throughout the 1971 season, as well as for 1980 home games vs. the San Diego Chargers and Dallas Cowboys, the latter in hopes to bring out the "blue jersey jinx" which has followed the Cowboys for decades (it worked, Denver won 41–20). Denver wore its white jerseys for 1983 home games vs. the Philadelphia Eagles, Los Angeles Raiders and Cincinnati Bengals, but would not wear white at home again for two decades (see below).[34][35]

In 1994, in honor of the 75th anniversary season of the NFL, the Broncos wore their 1965 throwback uniforms for two games—a Week 3 home game against the Los Angeles Raiders, as well a road game at the Buffalo Bills the following week.[34]

The Broncos then radically changed their logo and uniforms in 1997, a design that the team continues to use to this day. Navy blue replaced royal blue on the team's color scheme. The current logo is a profile of a horse's head, with an orange mane and navy blue outlines. They began wearing navy blue jerseys, replacing their longtime orange jerseys that had been the team's predominant home jersey color since 1962. This new uniform design also features a new word mark, numbering font and a streak that runs up and down the sides of both the jerseys and the pants. On the navy blue jerseys, the streak is orange, with an orange collar and white numerals trimmed in orange, while on the road white jerseys, the streak is navy blue, with a thin orange accent strip on both sides, a navy collar and navy numerals trimmed in orange. When they debuted, these uniforms were, once again, vilified by the press and fans, until the Broncos won their first ever Super Bowl in the new design that same season. The navy blue jerseys will remain as the team's primary home jersey until the end of the 2011 season (see next paragraph).

In 2002, the Broncos introduced an alternate orange jersey that is a mirror image of the aforementioned navy blue jerseys, but with orange and navy trading places. Like the road white jerseys, the white pants with the navy blue streaks running down the sides are worn with this uniform. This jersey was used only once in the 2002 and 2004 seasons, and were used twice per season from 2008–2011, most recently in an October 30, 2011 game vs. the Detroit Lions.[36] Former head coach Mike Shanahan was not a big fan of the alternate orange jerseys.[37] The Broncos previously wore orange jerseys as a throwback uniform in a Thanksgiving Day game at the Dallas Cowboys in 2001. Beginning in 2012, the modern orange jerseys will become the team's new primary home jersey, while the aforementioned navy blue jerseys will be designated as the new alternate jersey. The move was made due to overwhelming fan support to return to orange as the team's primary home jersey color.[32]

The team also introduced navy blue pants in 2003, with orange streaks to be worn with the navy blue jerseys. These pants are primarily used for select prime-time and late-season home games. Though they were part of the uniform change in 1997 and most players wanted to wear them, the only player who vetoed wearing them was John Elway, thereby delaying their eventual introduction.

On November 16, 2003, the Broncos wore their white jerseys at home for the first time since 1983, in a game vs. the San Diego Chargers. This was compensation for a uniform mix-up, after the teams' first meeting at San Diego's Qualcomm Stadium in Week 2 earlier that season, when the Chargers were the team that was supposed to declare their uniform color. The Chargers were planning to wear their white jerseys, but the visiting Broncos came to the stadium in white, and were fined $25,000 by the NFL as a result. When the two teams met at INVESCO Field at Mile High later that season (Week 11), the NFL allowed the visiting Chargers to choose their uniform color in advance, and they chose navy blue, forcing the Broncos to wear their white jerseys at home.[38]

In 2009, in honor of their 50th anniversary season as one of the eight original AFL teams, the Broncos wore their 1960 throwback uniforms (brown helmets, mustard yellow and brown jerseys) for games against two fellow AFL rivals—a Week 5 home game vs. New England Patriots, as well as the following week at the San Diego Chargers.[39][40]

Home field

Sports Authority Field at Mile High, when it was known as INVESCO Field at Mile High

For most of their history they played in Mile High Stadium. The AFL Broncos played at the University of Denver's Hilltop Stadium from time to time, including the first-ever victory of an AFL team over an NFL team: The Broncos beat the Detroit Lions on August 5, 1967, in a preseason game.

The team has sold out every home game (including post-season games) since the NFL merger in 1970, with the exception of two replacement games during the 1987 strike (but both were sold out before the strike). During home games, the attendance is announced to the crowd, along with the number of no-shows (the fans subsequently boo the no-shows). The fans are also known to chant "IN-COM-PLETE" every time the visiting team throws an incomplete pass.

The stadium's legendary home-field advantage is regarded as one of the best in the NFL, especially during the post-season. The Broncos have had the best home record in pro football over the past 32 years (1974–2006, 191–65–1). Mile High Stadium was one of the NFL's loudest stadiums, with steel flooring instead of concrete, which may have given the Broncos an advantage over opponents.

In 2001, the team moved into INVESCO Field at Mile High, built next to the former site of the since demolished old Mile High Stadium. Sportswriter Woody Paige, along with many of Denver's fans, however, often refuse to call the new stadium by its full name, preferring to use "Mile High Stadium" because of its storied history and sentimental import. Additionally the Denver Post had an official policy of referring to the stadium as simply "Mile High Stadium" in protest, but dropped this policy in 2004.

On August 16, 2011, Colorado-based sporting goods retailer Sports Authority claimed the naming rights of Invesco Field, which became known as Sports Authority Field at Mile High.[41]

The Colorado altitude has also been attributed as part of the team's home success. The stadium displays multiple references to the stadium's location of 5,280 feet (1.00 mi) above sea level, including a prominent mural just outside the visiting team's locker room.

Statistics

Season-by-season records

Players of note

Current roster

Denver Broncos rosterview · talk · edit
Quarterbacks

Running Backs

Wide Receivers

Tight Ends

Offensive Linemen

Defensive Linemen

Linebackers

Defensive Backs

Special Teams

Reserve Lists

Practice Squad

Rookies in italics
Roster updated November 16, 2011
Depth ChartTransactions

53 Active, 7 Inactive, 8 Practice Squad

More rosters

Pro Football Hall of Famers

Retired numbers

Ring of Fame

The Broncos have a Ring of Fame on the Level 5 facade of Invesco Field at Mile High, which honors the following:

Colorado Sports Hall of Fame

  • 23 Goose Gonsoulin, S, 1960–1966
  • 44 Floyd Little, RB, 1967–1975
  • 87 Lionel Taylor, WR, 1960–1966
  • 87 Rich Jackson, DE, 1967–1972
  • Gerald Phipps, team owner, 1961–1981
  • 18 Frank Tripucka, QB, 1960–1963
  • 36 Billy Thompson, CB, 1969–1981
  • 7 Craig Morton, QB, 1977–1982
  • 25 Haven Moses, WR, 1972–1981
  • 53 Randy Gradishar, LB, 1976–1983
  • 57 Tom Jackson, LB, 1973–1986
  • 80 Rick Upchurch, WR, 1975–1983
  • 20 Louis Wright, S, 1975–1986
  • Red Miller, Head Coach, 1977–1980
  • Dan Reeves, Head Coach, 1981–1992
  • 7 John Elway, QB, 1983–1998
  • 77 Karl Mecklenburg, LB, 1983–1994
  • 84 Shannon Sharpe, TE, 1990–1999, 2002–2003
  • 30 Terrell Davis, RB, 1995–2001
  • Mike Shanahan, Head Coach 1995–2008
  • 91 Alfred Williams, DE-LB, 1996–1999

Staff

Head coaches

Current staff

Denver Broncos staffv · d · e
Front Office
  • Owner/Chairman/CEO – Pat Bowlen
  • President – Joe Ellis
  • Executive Vice President of Football Operations – John Elway
  • General Manager – Brian Xanders
  • Director of Football Administration – Mike Bluem
  • Director of College Scouting – Matt Russell
  • Director of Pro Personnel – Keith Kidd
  • Assistant Director of College Scouting – Lenny McGill
  • Assistant Director of Pro Personnel – Anthony Kelly

Head Coaches

Offensive Coaches

 

Defensive Coaches

  • Defensive Coordinator – Dennis Allen
  • Defensive Line – Wayne Nunnely
  • Linebackers – Richard Smith
  • Secondary – Ron Milus
  • Assistant Secondary – Sam Garnes
  • Defensive Quality Control – Jay Rodgers

Special Teams Coaches

  • Special Teams Coordinator – Jeff Rodgers
  • Assistant Special Teams – Keith Burns

Strength and Conditioning

  • Strength and Conditioning – Rich Tuten
  • Strength and Conditioning Assistant – Justin Lovett
  • Strength and Conditioning Assistant – Greg Saporta


Coaching Staff and Management
More NFL staffs

Radio and television

As of 2010, the Broncos' flagship radio station was KOA, 850AM, a 50,000-watt station owned by Clear Channel Communications. Dave Logan is the play-by-play announcer, with former Broncos' quarterback Brian Griese serving as the color commentator. Until 2010, preseason games not selected for airing on national television were shown on KCNC, channel 4, which is a CBS owned-and-operated station, as well as other CBS affiliates around the Rocky Mountain region. On May 26, 2011, the Broncos announced that KUSA channel 9, an NBC affiliate also known as 9NEWS in the Rocky Mountain region, will be the team's new television partner for preseason games.[42]

Notable fans and in the media

  • Tim McKernan, a.k.a. Barrel Man, began wearing a barrel in 1977 after making a $10 bet with his brother, Scott, that by wearing one he could get on television. McKernan won the bet, and the barrel he had painted to look like an Orange Crush soda can became his signature costume, and resulted in him becoming one of the Broncos' most recognized fans and a popular mascot. McKernan died on December 5, 2009.[43]
  • The animated television show South Park, set in Park County, Colorado, often mentions the Denver Broncos; show creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone both grew up in Colorado as devout Broncos fans.[44]
  • In The Simpsons episode "You Only Move Twice", Hank Scorpio gives Homer Simpson the Denver Broncos as a thank-you gift for helping him. Homer complains that he wanted to own the Dallas Cowboys (the Broncos are playing very sloppy football on his front lawn while he says this). Incidentally, the Broncos were 13–3 that year, and won the Super Bowl the next 2 seasons. In another episode, Homer picks the Broncos to win the Super Bowl (the second of which aired on Fox, home of The Simpsons).
  • Many Broncos from the two Super Bowls are now in Sports Broadcasting. This includes, Shannon Sharpe, Mark Schlereth, Alfred Williams, and Terrell Davis.

Notes and references

  1. ^ a b "Team – Pro Football Hall of Fame". Profootballhof.com. http://www.profootballhof.com/history/team.jsp?franchise_id=10. Retrieved 2008-11-28. 
  2. ^ "Denver Broncos: American Football League Charter Members". Conigliofamily.com. http://www.conigliofamily.com/Broncos.htm. Retrieved 2008-11-28. 
  3. ^ "Denver Broncos Team History". Nflteamhistory.com. http://www.nflteamhistory.com/nfl_teams/denver_broncos/team_history.html. Retrieved 2008-11-28. 
  4. ^ "Denver Broncos Team Encyclopedia". Pro-football-reference.com. http://www.pro-football-reference.com/teams/den/. Retrieved 2008-11-28. 
  5. ^ http://www.denverbroncos.com/resources/custom/PDF/RecordBook/2008/AllTimeCoaches.pdf
  6. ^ "1977 Denver Broncos Statistics". Pro-football-reference.com. http://www.pro-football-reference.com/teams/den/1977.htm. Retrieved 2008-11-28. 
  7. ^ http://www.kcchiefs.com/news/2008/02/21/rand_dressing_up_the_old_afl/
  8. ^ Paton, James (October 2, 2008), "Clock runs out for ex-Broncos owner", Rocky Mountain News, http://www.rockymountainnews.com/news/2008/oct/02/ex-broncos-owner-denied-chance-buy-back-team/ 
  9. ^ "John Elway Timeline". Sportingnews.com. http://www.sportingnews.com/archives/elway/timeline.html. Retrieved 2008-11-28. 
  10. ^ "Denver Broncos". Football.com. Archived from the original on 2008-06-05. http://web.archive.org/web/20080605052411/http://www.football.com/nfl/denverbroncos/index.html. Retrieved 2008-11-28. 
  11. ^ "Super Bowl XXXII box score". NFL.com. http://www.nfl.com/superbowl/history/boxscore/sbxxxii. Retrieved 2008-11-28. 
  12. ^ http://www.denverbroncos.com/news-and-blogs/article-1/Shanahan-Broncos-Part-Ways/d25552b8-7892-11df-ba56-acc8e62813e9 Shanahan, Broncos Part Ways
  13. ^ "Broncos Introduce McDaniels". denverbroncos.com. January 11, 2009. http://www.denverbroncos.com/news-and-blogs/article-1/Broncos-Introduce-McDaniels/d228740c-7892-11df-ba56-acc8e62813e9. Retrieved January 11, 2009. 
  14. ^ Stapleton, Arnie (January 3, 2011). "Broncos lose franchise-record 12th game as Chargers win 33–28". kdvr.com. http://www.kdvr.com/news/kdvr-chargers-broncos-10211-txt,0,3858640.story. Retrieved January 3, 2011. 
  15. ^ Klis, Mike (December 6, 2010). "McDaniels fired as Broncos coach after controversy, losses pile up". denverpost.com. http://www.denverpost.com/sports/ci_16791509. Retrieved December 6, 2010. 
  16. ^ Klis, Mike (January 5, 2011). "Broncos officially announce Elway hire, promote Ellis to president". denverpost.com. http://www.denverpost.com/broncos/ci_17015369. Retrieved January 5, 2011. 
  17. ^ Caldwell, Gray (January 13, 2011). "Fox Takes the Reins". denverbroncos.com. http://www.denverbroncos.com/news-and-blogs/article-1/Fox-Takes-the-Reins/b6952341-7bf3-4c0a-9ff7-855588e9c380. Retrieved January 13, 2011. 
  18. ^ Klis, Mike (October 11, 2011). "Tim Tebow named Broncos' starting quarterback". denverpost.com. http://www.denverpost.com/broncos/ci_19087742. Retrieved October 11, 2011. 
  19. ^ http://bleacherreport.com/articles/260474-the-top-10-most-memorable-moments-in-the-raiders-broncos-rivalry#page/5 The 10 Most Memorable Moments in the Raiders-Broncos Rivalry
  20. ^ Crouse, Karen (2006-10-14). "The Raiders Are a Nation That Is Divided and Downtrodden". New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2006/10/15/sports/football/15raiders.html?ref=sports. Retrieved 2006-10-14. 
  21. ^ http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/recap?gameId=270916007 Broncos convert in OT after Raiders' second-chance kick fails
  22. ^ Klis, Mike (October 24, 2010). "Raiders blast Broncos 59–14; fans express their displeasure". denverpost.com. http://www.denverpost.com/sports/ci_16422877?_requestid=20990762. Retrieved October 24, 2010. 
  23. ^ Stadium Stories, 156.
  24. ^ http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/recap?gameId=280914007
  25. ^ http://www.profootballhof.com/history/team/denver-broncos/
  26. ^ http://en.allexperts.com/q/Denver-Broncos-277/Date-Elway-Drafted.htm
  27. ^ http://www.milehighreport.com/2008/10/16/634005/denver-broncos-new-england Denver Broncos @ New England Patriots; Through The Years
  28. ^ http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2004/football/nfl/05/17/sharpe.retrospective/index.html Sharpe Retrospective Broncos TE retires, leaving fans with memories of quotes and catches
  29. ^ http://espn.go.com/nfl/recap?gameId=231103007 Patriots take safety for field position
  30. ^ http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/recap?gameId=260114007 Broncos take advantage of turnovers, eliminate Patriots
  31. ^ http://www.denverbroncos.com/page.php?id=334&storyID=9454 Hard Fought 5–0
  32. ^ a b Legan, Kenny (October 3, 2011). "Orange Crush". denverbroncos.com. http://blog.denverbroncos.com/denverbroncos/orange-crush/. Retrieved October 3, 2011. 
  33. ^ http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1434/660608396_8eb6da94e0.jpg
  34. ^ a b http://www.uniwatchblog.com/white-at-home-in-the-nfl/ White at Home in the NFL
  35. ^ http://endzonesportscharities.org/gunews.htm
  36. ^ Henson, Max (October 30, 2011). "Lions Defeat Broncos 45-10". denverbroncos.com. http://www.denverbroncos.com/news-and-blogs/article-1/Lions-Defeat-Broncos-45-10/7a3d004e-286e-47b0-865b-847a62003b0e. Retrieved October 30, 2011. 
  37. ^ "Broncos' RBs turn in uneven performances". denverpost.com. August 4, 2010. http://www.denverpost.com/broncos/ci_15671807. Retrieved August 4, 2010. 
  38. ^ http://uniforms-i.com/football-uniforms.html
  39. ^ National Football League. "NFL announces 2009 AFL 'Legacy Games'". NFL. http://www.nfl.com/news/story?id=09000d5d81029dc6&template=without-video-with-comments&confirm=true. Retrieved 2009-10-11. 
  40. ^ Klis, Mike (2009-10-10). "Even if they win, the Broncos figure to look bad in their throwback uniforms Sunday". The Denver Post. http://www.denverpost.com/premium/broncos/ci_13530153. Retrieved 2009-10-11. 
  41. ^ "Broncos stadium renamed Sports Authority Field at Mile High". denverpost.com. August 16, 2011. http://www.denverpost.com/sports/ci_18693613. Retrieved August 16, 2011. 
  42. ^ Caldwell, Gray (May 26, 2011). "Broncos Partner with KUSA-TV". denverbroncos.com. http://www.denverbroncos.com/news-and-blogs/article-1/Broncos-Partner-with-KUSA-TV/dadca969-e9d6-4ae2-8dd9-bfd3700b4d99. Retrieved May 26, 2011. 
  43. ^ http://www.denverpost.com/broncos/ci_13934615 Tim McKernan, "Barrel Man" to Broncos fans, dies at 69
  44. ^ http://www.footballbabble.com/football/fans/celebrity/


Further reading

  • Denver Broncos: The Complete Illustrated History (2009), by Jim Saccomano & John Elway, MBI Publishing Company, ISBN 0760334765
  • Then Morton Said to Elway...: The Best Denver Broncos Stories Ever Told (2008), by Craig Morton & Adrian Dater, Triumph Books, ISBN 1600781217
  • Game of My Life: Denver Broncos: Memorable Stories of Broncos Football (2007), by Jim Saccomano, Sports Publishing LLC, ISBN 1596700912
  • The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly Denver Broncos: Heart-Pounding, Jaw-Dropping, and Gut-Wrenching Moments from Denver Broncos History (2007), By Adrian Dater – Triumph Books, ISBN 1572439750
  • John Elway and the Denver Broncos: Super Bowl XXXIII (2007), by Michael Sandler, Bearport Pub Company, ISBN 1597165360
  • The Denver Broncos (2006), by Mark Stewart – Norwood House Press, ISBN 159953066X
  • Denver Broncos: Colorful Tales of the Orange and Blue (2004), by Larry Zimmer, Globe Pequot Press, ISBN 0762727667

External links

Achievements
Preceded by
Green Bay Packers
1997
Super Bowl Champions
Denver Broncos

1998 and 1999
Succeeded by
St. Louis Rams
2000

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