After what has taken years, the Pro Football Hall of Fame have formally announced that Steve Atwater will be forever enshrined in Canton.
We can finally rejoice Broncos Country! Steve Atwater, also known as “The Smilin’ Assassin” is finally going to be enshrined into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. It will be made official at Saturday night’s NFL Honors show.
Atwater played in the NFL starting in the 1989 NFL season. His presence was well known as the hard hitting safety that just stopped opposing running backs and receivers in their tracks. Broncos Country and perhaps the National Football League knew during his humongous hit on Christian Okoye on a Monday Night Football game against the Kansas City Chiefs in 1990.
A lot of opposing defenses were tormented by Okoye’s forceful bulldozer running style. But Steve Atwater just laid down the lumber on him on that particular play. It was a hit that defined what it means to play defense.
Perhaps his biggest hit of his career helped the Broncos win Super Bowl XXXII (32). On a third down play, he had a huge hit on Robert Brooks that forced an incomplete pass. Not only did the hit knock out Brooks and Randy Hilliard, but Atwater knocked himself out as well. It did however force Brett Favre and the Packers to attempt a fourth down play, which fell incomplete.
The Broncos would run out the clock to win the first Super Bowl in franchise history. Steve Atwater was somewhat of an unsung hero in that game. He would be with Denver for one more year, winning a title before playing one more season in New York before calling it a career.
Steve Atwater getting into the Hall of Fame was such a long process, but it finally got done. Broncos Country is truly happy that the long time safety finally is going to be enshrined in Canton, Ohio.
Congratulations Steve Atwater! A well deserved honor!