Talk about short and sweet. Number 93 for the Denver Broncos was represented by a mere five players in the history of the franchise. Four Defensive Linemen and a Linebacker. Sorry to disappoint everyone, but this is a "No-Brainer." That's okay though, because you're going to be tending the Barbecue anyway and won't have that much time to spare. While I'm at it, I would like to wish everyone a Happy Independence Day and a special Thank You to all the people who have served our country in the past and and are doing so presently. Here are the 5 candidates in line for the Greatest Bronco to wear #93.
Ronnie Haliburton LB 1990-92
Ronnie Haliburton was drafted by the Denver Broncos in the 6th round (164th overall) of the 1990 NFL Draft as a Tight End out of LSU. At the start of Training Camp, Broncos Coach Dan Reeves asked Haliburton to switch to Linebacker since there were 6 other Tight Ends on the roster. Ronnie made the final roster in that position and played in Denver for 3 years although he only played two. He was on Injured Reserve with a knee injury in 1991 and missed all of the 1992 season with a neck injury. Haliburton ruptured two vertebra when he collided with a Phoenix Cardinal player in the 3rd quarter of a preseason game after a Denver kickoff. He temporarily lost feeling in his extremities. Ronnie was released from the Hospital the following day and had to wear a neck brace. Haliburton ran into trouble a few times. In July 1991, he was charged with 2nd-degree assault, resisting arrest, obstructing a police officer and disorderly conduct after a fight outside the Armory nightclub, a bar located in the same town as the Broncos Training Camp. In December of that same year, he was charged with 2nd-degree sexual assault and contributing to the delinquency of a minor for an alleged incident with a 15-year-old girl in Littleton, Colorado. Haliburton played in 17 games with 9 Tackles and also played on Special Teams for the Broncos. Ronnie played for the CFL's Shreveport Pirates in 1994. After that, he returned to his Alma mater LSU and supervised facility services in the athletic department for 4 years. In 2008, Haliburton was promoted to Associate Athletic Director of Facilities.
Antwon Burton was signed by the Denver Broncos as an undrafted free agent in 2006 out of Temple University. He was signed to Denver’s practice squad after Training Camp. Antwon was promoted to the Active roster on November 12, 2006 and made his debut in Week 10 against the Raiders and assisted on a Tackle. He was declared inactive for the rest of the season. In 2007 he played in 6 games and made 8 Tackles. Burton was waived on November 13, 2007 and signed November 14, 2007 to Broncos Practice Squad, where he finished the season. Burton signed with Bengals in 2008. He was also on the roster of the Kansas City Chiefs and St. Louis Rams in 2008 but did not play in a game. Antwon signed with the Carolina Panthers on September 22, 2009 after they lost Ma'ake Kemoeatu and Louis Leonard for the season. He was waived on October 20, after the Panthers acquired Tank Tyler from Kansas City. He was with the Florida Tuskers in 2010 and currently plays for the Sacramento Mountain Lions of the United Football League
James Jones was drafted by the Cleveland Browns in the 3rd round (57th overall) of the 1991 NFL Draft. He spent 4 seasons with the Browns, joining the Broncos in 1995. Jones started all 16 games at Left Defensive Tackle, with 31 Tackles, 1 Sack and 2 Fumble recoveries. James played 3 years with the Ravens from 1996-98 and the Detroit Lions in 1999 and 2000.
Nic Clemons went Undrafted out of Georgia. He signed with the Washington Redskins in 2003. He spent the 2003 and 2004 seasons on their Practice Squad and in 2005, he played 8 games with 2 Tackles. He left Washington in 2006, resurfacing with the Atlanta Falcons in 2007. Clemons was waived before playing a snap in Atlanta and joined the Broncos in 2008. He played 10 games, making 13 Tackles and one pass deflection. His next stop was the Omaha Nighthawks of the United Football League in 2010. Nic is currently a Free Agent.
As I said, this one isn't even close. The Greatest Bronco to wear #93 is...
Trevor Pryce was drafted by the Broncos in the 1st round (28th overall) of the 1997 NFL Draft. He played 9 years at Right Defensive Tackle and Left Defensive End in Denver from 1997-2005. In his rookie season he played in 8 games and recorded 24 Tackles and two Sacks. He made his NFL debut on November 2 versus the Seattle Seahawks. In his 2nd year with the Broncos, he started 15 out of the 16 games and made 43 Tackles and a then career high 8.5 Sacks. He was also a member of the Broncos Super Bowl XXXIII team. In the 1999 season he started in 15 games and recorded 46 Tackles and a career high 13 Sacks. He also earned his first trip to the Pro Bowl. The following season, 2000, he started all 16 regular season games and finished the season with 46 Tackles and 12 Sacks. He was also voted to his 2nd consecutive Pro Bowl. In 2001, he was voted to his 3rd consecutive Pro Bowl after finishing the season with 41 Tackles and 7 Sacks. The 2002 season saw Pryce voted to the Pro Bowl for the 4th year in a row after finishing the campaign with 46 Tackles and 9 Sacks. In 2003 he started in all 16 games including his 100th career game and recorded 36 Tackles and 8.5 Sacks. The 2004 season was a frustrating one for Pryce as he only played in two games after surgery on a herniated disc in his lower back. In his last year with the Broncos, Pryce started 16 times and recorded 33 Tackles and four Sacks.
Pryce was one of the most ferocious members of the Broncos Defense during the championship years. As a Bronco, he started 114 of 121 games, making 317 Tackles, 64 Sacks, 2 interceptions, 9 pass deflections, 6 Forced Fumbles, 4 Fumble recoveries--one for a 28-yard touchdown and one Safety.
- 4-Time Pro Bowl selection (1999, 2000, 2001, 2002)
- 3-Time All-Pro Selection (1999, 2000, 2001)
- 2-Time Super Bowl champion (XXXII, XXXIII)
- Denver Broncos 50th Anniversary Team
- 6th - Most Multi-Sack Games (12)
- 4th - Most Sacks, Season (13)
- 6th - Most Sacks, Career (64)
- 8.5 sacks or more 5 seasons
- 16-game starter in 5 seasons
In a Q & A on the Broncos site in 2003, Trevor had some interesting things to say.
Who is the best offensive lineman you have ever lined up against?
Do you prefer to play end or tackle?
I prefer end because I don’t have to deal with offensive linemen. I’m usually in front of tight ends or in front of space.
What was your most memorable sack?
My first one against Warren Moon in my rookie year.
What do you feel is your biggest asset as a player that allows you to play at the level you do?
Speed. I run fast.
How much has the great play of Bertrand Berry taken the pressure off you this season? (note: Trevor had 8.5 Sacks in 2003)
Like you wouldn’t believe, that’s my quote.
What was the proudest moment in your NFL career so far?
The 2nd Super Bowl, playing in it and winning it. I started all year and had a pretty good year and the year before some people had written me off except for my coaches and my teammates so it was pretty special to me to do that. I should have gone to the Pro Bowl, too.
Who is the quarterback that you most enjoyed getting to and sacking?
You enjoy sacking them all, it’s the getting to them part that you don’t enjoy. Rich Gannon and Trent Green get really angry when they get sacked, I don’t know why. There’s nothing they can do about it, it’s a part of football -- I get blocked.
Was it hard switching from DT to DE?
It was easy. I had to lose some weight to keep my speed because you can’t play end being so big at 300 pounds. That was the hardest part, bringing my weight down. Next year I’m going to have to bring it down more. The longer I play the lighter I’m going to have to be to maintain what I can do.
In 2006, Pryce moved on to the Baltimore Ravens, where he would play another 4 years and part of a 5th before being released to make room for defensive back Ken Hamlin. He signed with the New York Jets reuniting with Rex Ryan, his Defensive Coordinator in Baltimore who became the Jets Head Coach.
In hindsight, the Broncos should have re-signed Trevor to another contract, but the notoriously stubborn Mike Shanahan didn't think Pryce was worth it. Trevor had 3 good years out of the next four, with 13, 2, 4.5, and 6.5 Sack seasons. He only appeared in 5 games in 2007, hence the low Sack total.
MHR gives a Mile High Salute to Trevor Pryce as the Greatest Bronco to wear #93.