Denver Broncos Greats... By The Numbers: #76

Seventeen players wore #76 for the Denver Broncos in team history. Ten Offensive Tackles, four Defensive Ends, two Defensive Tackles and a Linebacker. Most of these guys didn't play very long in Denver, but the final choice wasn't made by attrition. In fact, you probably already know who it's going to be. Well there won't be any quick strikes here. Your going to need a long scoring drive. Here is the lineup for the Greatest Bronco to wear #76. 

Tyler Polumbus RT 2008-09
Kenard Lang DE 2006
Broderick Thompson RT 1995-96
Kirk Scrafford RT 1993-94
Ken Lanier RT 1981-92
Tom Neville RT 1978
Randy Moore DT 1976
Tom Drougas T 1974
Steve Coleman DE 1974
Tom Domres DT 1971-72
Gordon Lambert LB 1968
Bob Breitenstein LT 1965-67
Harold Olson LT 1963-64
Leo T. Reed T 1961
Jack Mattox LT 1961
William Yelverton DE 1960
William Danenhauer DE 1960

William Danenhauer was drafted by the Baltimore Colts in the 17th round (199th overall) of the 1956 NFL Draft. His NFL experience consisted of splitting the 1960 season playing 3 games with the Boston Patriots and four with the Denver Broncos. His brother Eldon Danenhauer also played for the Broncos from 1960-65.

William Yelverton was drafted by the San Francisco 49ers in the 18th round (208th overall) of the 1956 NFL Draft. He played 10 games at Defensive End for the Broncos in 1960. Bill had one interception that he returned for a touchdown.

Jack Mattox went Undrafted out of Fresno State. He played 8 games at Left Tackle for the Broncos in 1961. 

Leo T. Reed was drafted by the St. Louis Cardinals in the 20th round (274th overall) of the 1961 NFL Draft. Leo went to school at nearby Colorado State. He split the 1961 season playing 5 games for the Houston Oilers and four games with the Broncos as a reserve Guard/Tackle swing-man.

Harold Olson was drafted by the St. Louis Cardinals in the 2nd round (13th overall) of the 1960 NFL Draft. Olson didn't play for the Cards though, instead signing with the Bills. He played 3 seasons in Buffalo and went to the Pro Bowl as a Right Tackle in 1961 and was a 1st Team All-Pro in 1962. Harold was a member of the Broncos in 1963-64. On those 2 years, he started all 28 games at Left Tackle. He also returned 4 kickoffs for 27 yards.

Bob Breitenstein was drafted by the Washington Redskins in the 2nd round (21st overall) of the 1965 NFL Draft and the Denver Broncos in the 5th round (33rd overall) of the 1965 AFL Draft. Bob chose the Broncos and played a little over 2 seasons from 1965-67 in Denver. Breitenstein started all 30 games he played in at Left Tackle.

Gordon Lambert was drafted by the Denver Broncos in the 4th round (91st overall) of the 1968 NFL Draft. although he played 2 seasons in Denver, Gordon wore #76 in 1968 only. He appeared in 10 games that season.

Tom Domres was drafted by the Houston Oilers in the 10th round (268th overall) of the 1968 NFL Draft. He played 4 years in Houston before joining the Broncos in 1971. Tom played 2 seasons in Denver from 1971-72. He started 5 of 16 games and recovered one Fumble.

Steve Coleman was signed by the Broncos out of Delaware State in 1974. He played 2 games for Denver.

Tom Drougas was drafted by the Baltimore Colts in the 1st round (22nd overall) of the 1972 NFL Draft. He played 2 seasons in Baltimore and then split time in 1974 with the Kansas City Chiefs and the Broncos. Tom appeared in 3 games for Denver and then split for Miami, where he would finish his career.

Randy Moore was drafted by the Denver Broncos in the 12th round (334th overall) of the 1976 NFL Draft. He started all 8 of the games he played in at Right Defensive Tackle.

Tom Neville was drafted by the Boston Patriots in the 7th round (55th overall) of the 1965 AFL Draft and the Pittsburgh Steelers in the 9th round (115th overall) of the 1965 NFL Draft. He chose Boston and played there for 12 years through their name change to New England (in 1971) and went to the Pro Bowl in 1966. Neville came to Denver in 1978 at the ripe old age of 35. Tom started 15 pf 16 games at Right Tackle. He finished his career with the New York Giants in 1979.

Kirk Scrafford was signed by the Cincinnati Bengal as an Undrafted Free Agent out of Montana in 1990. He played 3 seasons with the Bengals before coming to Denver in 1993. Scrafford stayed for 2 seasons and started 8 of 32 games at Right Tackle for the Broncos. He recovered one Fumble. Kirk left Denver and shuffled off to San Francisco to play the last 4 years of his career for the Niners. 

Broderick Thompson was signed by the Dallas Cowboys as an Undrafted Free Agent out of Kansas in 1985. In 1987, he went to San Diego and played 6 seasons for the Chargers. After 2 years in Philadelphia, Broderick joined the Broncos in 1995. He played 2 seasons at Right Tackle, starting all 32 games.

Kenard Lang was drafted by the Washington Redskins in the 1st round (17th overall) of the 1997 NFL Draft. He enjoyed a 5-year stay in our Nation's capitol and moved on to Cleveland in 2002, where he played 4 seasons. Kenard started all 16 games at Left Defensive End for the Broncos in 2006, his only season with the team. Lang recorded 37 Tackles, 6 Sacks, 1 Pass deflection and one Forced Fumble.

Tyler Polumbus was signed by the Denver Broncos as an Undrafted Free Agent out of Colorado in 2008. He played 2008-09 with the Broncos, starting 8 of 16 games at Right Tackle. In 2009, Tyler received a kickoff, recovered a Fumble and made one Tackle on Special Teams. In one of Josh McDaniels' many gaffes, Polumbus was waived on August 24, 2010, in lieu of protecting another player on the roster. The plan failed as Tyler was claimed off waivers by the Detroit Lions in August and traded a week later to the Seattle Seahawks. He started 2 games at Left Tackle in place of injured Russell Okung in 2010.

This is another easy one. The Greatest Bronco to wear #76 is...

Ken Lanier
Ken Lanier was drafted by the Denver Broncos in the 5th round (125th overall) of the 1981 NFL Draft. He spent 12 years from 1981-92 wearing #76. Like many other Broncos' offensive lineman, it took Ken a year before he cracked the starting lineup, but once he did he remained there for 11 seasons. Lanier started all 3 Super Bowls he appeared in and was named team captain for Super Bowl XXIV. He Was affectionately nicknamed, "The Rock on the Right Side." Lanier was the formidable guy you could count on. He played before the big-money, Free Agency days of the NFL, with his highest yearly salary being $735,000. 

Overall, Lanier started 165 of 173 games, all at Right Tackle. He recovered 4 Fumbles and caught a pass that lost 4 yards.

Team Achievements
  • 2nd Most Consecutive Games Played - 166 
  • 3rd Most Consecutive Games Started - 131 
  • 4th (Tie) Most Seasons - 13
  • 6th Most Games Started - 165
  • 2nd Team - Broncos 50th Anniversary Team   
  • Starter in Super Bowl XXI, XXII and XXIV
  • 13 Playoff starts

MHR gives a Mile High Salute to "The Rock on the Right Side," Ken Lanier, as the Greatest Bronco to wear #76.

Go Broncos!

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