This was an interesting group: thirteen players wore #61 over a period of thirty-nine years, one defensive lineman (a DT) and twelve offensive linemen (a center, eight guards, two tackles and one general offensive lineman). They played anywhere from a single season to twelve seasons. Four were undrafted and five were drafted by other teams before coming to the Broncos. They had anywhere from no starts to 151 starts.
Let's take a jump and learn about the men of #64
Bud McFadin DT 1960-63
Drafted by the LA Rams in the 1st round (11th overall) of the 1951 NFL Draft. Appeared in 56 games with 0 starts. Returned 2 fumbles for touchdowns. 1st Team All-AFL in 1961 & 1962. He played tackle and linebacker on defense as well as tackle and guard on offense.
John Hohman G 1965-66
Drafted by the Broncos in the 8th round (57th overall) of the 1965 AFL Draft. Appeared in 24 games with 0 starts. He was awarded two sentences in wikipedia.
Sam Brunelli G 1967
Undrafted player who joined the Broncos in 1966. He wore #68 in 1966, #64 in 1967, and #72 from 1968 to 1971. He appeared in 60 games with 43 starts. He recovered 2 fumbles and had a combined return yardage of 1 yard.
George Gaiser T 1968
Drafted by the Bills in the 7th round (181st overall) of the 1967 NFL Draft. There is no record of his ever playing for the Bills. He appeared in 10 games for the Broncos with 7 starts. He recovered 1 fumble.
Mike Schnitker G 1969-74
Drafted by the Broncos in the 4th round (84th overall) of the 1969 NFL Draft. He appeared in 74 games with 26 starts. He caught 1 pass for -11 yards. He recovered 1 fumble.
Harvey Goodman G 1976
Drafted by the St. Louis Cardinals in the 5th round (124th overall) of the 1975 NFL Draft. There is no record of him ever playing for the Cardinals. He appeared in 14 games for the Broncos with 0 starts. He returned 1 kick for 8 yards.
Bill Bryan C 1977-88
Drafted by the Broncos in the 4th round (101st overall) of the 1977 NFL Draft. He appeared in 153 games with 151 starts. He recovered 6 fumbles. He was voted All-Pro in 1985. He was a member of the Broncos in three Super Bowl seasons: 1977 & SB XII, 1986 & SB XXI, 1987 & SB XXII. He was a starter in SB XXI, but was not listed by NFL.com as being on the active roster in either SB XII or SB XXII.
Scott Beavers G 1990
Undrafted player. He appeared in 2 games with 0 starts.
Jon Melander G/T 1993-94
Drafted by the Patriots in the 5th round (113th overall) of the 1990 NFL Draft. He appeared in 29 games with 22 starts.
Ralph Tamm G/C 1995-96
Drafted by the Jets in the 9th round (230th overall) of the 1988 NFL Draft. He appeared in 22 games with 1 start. He recovered 1 fumble. He has served as a players' representative on the Board of Directors. Since his retirement, he has become an agent representing NFL players with respect to their contracts, endorsements and personal appearances.
Lennie Friedman G 2000-02
Drafted by the Broncos in the 2nd round (61st overall) of the 1999 NFL Draft. He appeared in 33 games with 22 starts. He recovered 2 fumbles. He missed his rookie year after tearing his left ACL during a pre-season game. He left the Broncos as an unrestricted free agent in 2003.
Erik Pears T 2006-08
Undrafted player signed in 2005. He spent 2005 on the practice squad and playing for NFL Europe. He appeared in 32 games with 26 starts.
Stanley Daniels OL 2010-Present
Undrafted player signed by the St. Louis Rams in 2007. He played for the Rams, Jets and Packers before being released by the Packers in the preseason of 2010. He was claimed off waivers by the Broncos. He appeared in 7 games with 4 starts. He went on and off the active roster throughout the year.
At first this seemed like it was going to be an easy choice, since several of the players basically played less than a full season with Denver. I thought about going with McFadin since he played both sides of the line of scrimmage, was voted All-AFL and was instrumental in launching the Broncos franchise. Friedman deserved a look for being the highest drafted player in this group. I even thought about Tamm for being a player representative to the Board of Directors. But in the end, I went with:
Who was the greatest Bronco to wear #64?
Bud McFadin DT 1960-63 (4 votes)
John Hohman G 1965-66 (0 votes)
Sam Brunelli G 1967 (3 votes)
George Gaiser T 1968 (0 votes)
Mike Schnitker G 1969-74 (6 votes)
Harvey Goodman G 1976 (0 votes)
Billy Bryan C 1977-88 (243 votes)
Scott Beavers G 1990 (1 vote)
Jon Melander G/T 1993-94 (0 votes)
Ralph Tamm G/C 1995-96 (0 votes)
Lennie Friedman G 2000-02 (1 vote)
Erik Pears T 2006-08 (5 votes)
Stanley Daniels OL 2010-Present (6 votes)
269 total votes