From the top: Why we should all thank Pat Bowlen


With the bye week past us, the sole focus of the team has been on their undefeated counterparts, the Green Bay Packers.  Manning vs. Rodgers, great defense vs. great offense, rematch of a classic super bowl match up. All of these things have been heavily circulated in the headlines leading up to this game, but there’s one headline about this weekend that will transcend the game.

To honor his 31 years of astounding ownership of the Denver Broncos, owner Pat Bowlen will be enshrined into the team’s Ring of Fame.  To say that Bowlen’s impact on the team is immense would be a gross understatement.

When Bowlen purchased the team from Edgar Kaiser jr. in 1984, nobody could have expected the positive impact the new head honcho of the Broncos would have on the organization over the next 30+ years.

Bowlen, or “Mr. B” as many former players call him, set a precedent for excellence throughout the organization and it was that mentality that helped the Broncos win two world championships, six AFC championships and and thirteen division titles in his time as the Broncos CEO/owner.

Although he remains owner of the team, in the summer of 2014, Bowlen stepped down as CEO of the Denver Broncos. The reasoning for this move was very sad and disappointing news for Broncos Country, as a whole.  Bowlen had fallen victim to Alzheimer’s disease and in order to find the proper treatment for his condition, he relinquished control of the team.

With long time employee and Chief Operating Officer Joe Ellis assuming presidential duties of the Denver Broncos,

Jan 19, 2014; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen with the Lamar Hunt trophy after the 2013 AFC Championship game at Sports Authority Field against the New England Patriots at Mile High. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Bowlen slowly faded from the top of the team hierarchy.  Although his role in the team’s day to day operations have diminished, his presence will forever be felt on the team.

A notoriously competitive person, Bowlen strived to have everything he was apart of to be great.  Aside from owning the Broncos, he also was a part owner of the Colorado Crush arena football team and a longtime triathlete.

He was known to workout with many of the players in the team facility and was willing to take on any challenge that was thrown his way.

Unlike some owners in professional sports, Bowlen was willing to do whatever it took (within reason) to give his team the necessary tools to win a championship.

Although it was his competitive fire that fueled the team’s success, it was his compassion that he showed to everyone in the organization that may have been his most important contribution to the team.

Bowlen was known to be the first person to reach out to Terrell Davis when he suffered his season ending injury in the 1999 season.  Davis was one of many players that received kinds words and a helping hand from Mr. Bowlen over the years.

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So when you combine the number of wins, championships and great players that have played under Bowlen’s watch, it’s easy to see why he’s deserving of the Ring of Fame honor.

In a league where parity has become common, Bowlen’s record as an owner (6 conference championships to only 5 losing seasons) is one that has to be taken seriously.

Not only was Bowlen deserving of the Ring of Fame honor, but the argument could be made that he should be a real candidate for the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Let me type that again.  Under Bowlen’s watch, the Broncos have had more AFC CHAMPIONSHIPS than LOSING SEASONS.  In what can be summed up as nothing short of amazing, Bowlen’s tenure as Owner/CEO cannot be ignored by the NFL masses.

I’d like to take this opportunity on behalf of myself and the entire Predominantly Orange team to thank Bowlen for all of the great memories that he has given our beloved Broncos and we wish him the best in his battle against Alzheimer’s disease.

Next: The top Broncos vs. Packers moment of all time

Starting tomorrow night, let’s make this game and the future of the Broncos great on behalf of the person that has done more for the team than anybody has done in team history.  Thanks Pat Bowlen and GO BRONCOS!!!