Highlights and Heartaches: The Proud History of the Denver Broncos
The proud history of the Denver Broncos is filled with thrills, chills, and heartaches.
With over 60 years of storied history since its beginning in 1960, the Denver Broncos have become one of the most successful franchises in the National Football League. With 8 Super Bowl appearances, only the New England Patriots (11) have been to the big game more than the Broncos. The three NFL championships won by the Broncos are more than 23 other teams in the NFL.
The Broncos have managed to score 15 AFC West division titles, 37 non-losing seasons, and 21 playoff appearances. Over the years, Bronco Country has had plenty to cheer about - and to cry about. That's what happens when you're a fan of any team in any sport.
Along the way, the Broncos have produced countless thrilling moments for the fans in Bronco Country: Their first Super Bowl appearance, the trade for John Elway, "The Drive" against the Cleveland Browns in the 1986 AFC Championship, the signing of Peyton Manning, beating Tom Brady and the New England Patriots in the 2015 AFC Championship, and, of course, winning Super Bowl 50 against the Carolina Panthers.
That's not to say they haven't seen more than their share of heartaches, disappointments, and gut-wrenching losses. Losing four straight Super Bowls --and losing badly-- playoff losses to Baltimore, Jacksonville, and Pittsburgh that should have been won. Not to forget the mind-numbing, never-ending search to find a replacement for Hall of Fame quarterbacks John Elway and Peyton Manning.
There are Hall-of-Famers like Floyd Little, Shannon Sharpe, Terrell Davis, and Champ Bailey that represent big orange in Canton, and an owner in Pat Bowlen who was committed to bringing championship football to Colorado's Mile High City. So many different people have contributed to the Broncos' success through the years.
I've been following the Broncos for about 44 years now. In the short amount of space and time available, it would be nearly impossible for me to chronicle every single significant player, game, and memorable moment in their history. However, the following photos will take fans through a memorable walk through the Denver Broncos' history filled with highlights and heartaches.