I was born during a Bronco game. A Sunday afternoon, 3:00pm to be exact, in September of 1975. Broncos took down the Chiefs 37-31 at Mile High. My old man had it on the radio. Rick Upchurch had a 90 yard TD reception. Sweet as.... I don't remember that one.
In the basement of my buddy Josh's house in Park Hill is where I learned to hate all things McConkey. That's what I remember from The Duke's first Super Bowl. I remember that one. Josh's basement.
The Taylor's Ferry house in Portland, Oregon with many a Colorado transplant is where I watched #7 do his little helicopter flip, and we just bloody knew we were gonna win after that. Yeah, I remember that one. My buddy Freedom smashed a Coors Light over his head when the whistle blew for the end of the game. Stupid? Probably. Dedicated? You bet your ass.
Conrad Treasury Casino in Brisbane, Australia, 6am to watch Jake the Snake implode at home and send Big Ben off to glory. There is still a spot for Jake at my table. But I remember that one. It hurt.
When Shanahan got fired? No idea. Portland, somwhere. And then when Mr. Bowlen hired McDaniels. I was in A Fit Of Rage, a little town in the backside of my head. Never occurred to me that these were gonna be seminal moments.
Let's be clear, I'm one of the faithful.
But I think I speak for a fair few of us that when McDaniels was hired, we didn't know he was gonna fire sale so much of the team (for the better as we were to find out). We figured we got some young hot shot OC wanker when, clearly, what we needed after the last coupla years of diabolically wretched defense was a defensive mind. Cower on a prayer, PLEASE!!
And then of course, McJayGate. Can you blame us? I mean c'mon. No matter how it has turned out, I think even Josh McDaniels has admitted that that could have gone better, on all accounts.
And then we drafted Knowshon. Now look, I know that we had picked up B Dawk and some other free agents that had some goods. But we still didn't really know that practically the whole team was gonna be switched out and the 5-2 brought in and that it was gonna work (although I always knew Doom was gonna get crazy). I again went to visit old friends in A Fit Of Rage.
But remember, I am one of the faithful. I am allowed to be outraged as I sip chocolate milk from my '82 Broncos plastic mug. That's what being faithful is – giving a damn. And then letting the dust settle, and cooling down, and saying, "I still love ya', cause you'll always be my boys." And that's why the off-season is so long, so you can adjust to the mayhem and embrace it.
So let it be said, I was dubious. Bordering on doubtful. It should also be noted that I thanked the MHR community some time ago for a taste of the Kool-Aid. 13-3 baby. By opening day I was behind McDaniels. I was behind my boys. Our Broncos.
Where was I when Stokley stole the show with the Immaculate Deflection? I was in my living room with Freedom, smashing his head with my hand (and not a bottle) as we were leaping up and down, screaming like banshees, scaring my children (they got over it when they realized that the Broncos won.) I remember that one.
And against the Evil Empire? Freedom and I were at Claudia's, and we just about brought that ol' barn down. Yeah, I'll be remembering that one, too.
Gotta feeling I'll be remembering just about all of them this year. For while once there was doubt, it has been blown away by four fist pumps to the North Stands.
And therein lies the rub – The faithful can be dubious. An uncomfortable position, to be sure. But we are ever loyal, ever dedicated.
Just ask Freedom's head.