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After a couple of hectic weeks, I finally have a chance to post something. Though I am a little late, I could not let two weeks go by without doing any history posts and I certainly wasn't going to let a divisional game go by since there are dozens of great games to choose from here. I'll make it short, but sweet.
There were a lot of great games between these two teams. There was the Montana-Elway duel, the Atwater blow up of the Nigerian Nightmare, and the Derrick Thomas Monday Night meltdown. The one game that sticks out to me above all the rest was early on during the 1992 season.
That was a promising year, until Elway got hurt. The Broncos started out 7-3 before Elway went down, then would finish 8-8. Stats like that give me pause when I think about what would happen to our current Broncos if Cutler ever went down. This game would end up one of the greatest comebacks of Elway's career.
I was thirteen when this game took place and I vividly recall watching this game. After 55 minutes of frustration and anger over a 19-6 deficit. Dave freaking Krieg was looking like Johnny Unitas reborn, completing 71% of his passes for over 300 yards. The only thing that kept the Broncos from being horribly blown out in their own back yard was its defense. They gave up just one touchdown all day, a 50 yard bomb in the second quarter, and would hold the Chiefs to four field goals - keeping John Elway and the Broncos within striking distance.
I must admit that I have all but given up winning this game when the Broncos took over at their own twenty with less than five minutes to go. I didn't stop watching though, as I also knew all too well what was possible with John Elway flinging the ball around. Even though he had spent most of the day being harried and abused by the stout Chiefs defense, Elway took over the game and owned the final few minutes of regulation.
I was rewarded for my vigilance with a fourteen play, 80 yard drive that culminated with a twenty five yard touchdown pass to Mark Jackson just after the two minute warning. All of a sudden we were back in the game. I was angry that we didn't go for the onside kick, but I quickly realized that we were playing Marty ball and I knew that we'd get the ball back with a moderate amount of time left on the clock. The move obviously paid off as our also stout defense held and force the Chiefs to punt. The name of the guy who basically saved the game for us escapes me, but he returned the punt deep into Chiefs territory. A few plays later John Elway would connect with Vance Johnson on a twelve yard touchdown pass with just over thirty seconds left to play in the game.
I remember hooting and hollering for quite a while after that game and it remains one of the greatest team performances in NFL history. I believe I look back so fondly on this particular game because it was the most team oriented comeback in Elway's career. It took all 53 guys playing first rate football to overcome the deficit. Elway and the offense did their job, the defense did their job, and then special teams came up with the game saving play. All around the best team win I have ever seen from my beloved Broncos.
Here a few other great Elway comebacks against the Chiefs at Mile High Stadium:
December 14, 1985 - Denver 14, Kansas City 13 (can't remember)
September 17, 1990 - Denver 24, Kansas City 23 (great game!)
October 20, 1991 - Denver 19, Kansas City 16 (mellow dramatic)
December 12, 1993 - Denver 27, Kansas City 21 (great game!)
December 6, 1998 - Denver 35, Kansas City 31 (really great game!)
I chose the October 4, 1992 game because it was such a team win...and it occurred just a couple of days before my fourteenth birthday. It's the little things really. Perhaps some of you might have some memories you'd like to share about pre-Elway or post-Elway games. Or maybe one of the games I mentioned above just cries out to you as being more significant. The 1998 game certainly does...13-0 sounds pretty sweet to me!
Hope you enjoyed this and GO BRONCOS!