Denver Post/Karl Gehring
Forgive me if I am late getting to the party. Such comes with the territory of living 1500 miles away. The Broncos honored the families of Darrent Williams and Damien Nash last night, though you'd be hard-pressed to know based on NBC's TV Coverage. That might have been the wish of those involved, to keep it "low-key" and "intimate", shared by only the 76,000 or so in attendance, but upon reading about it this morning I felt the need to comment.
On a night the Broncos needed a win, a night that a season stood on the brink, we were once again slammed back to the harsh reality of real life and death. The Broncos honored Rosalind Williams and Judy Nash before the Broncos beat the Steelers, reminding all of us what truly is important. While the game was in doubt to the very end, there must have been a sense in the crowd that there was no way the Broncos would lose this game.
"What a night," Williams said after the game. "They did it, they did it. I'm so proud of those guys. They scared me, but we got it done. I'm so happy."
The Broncos have always been a first-class organization, finding just the right way to honor, without seeming mushy or over the top. They did it once again in honoring Williams and Nash, with each grieving mother joining the Broncos Captains at mid-field for the pre-game coin toss.
"I had to fight back tears," Broncos coach Mike Shanahan said of his pregame moment with the two women. Rosalind Williams also visited with Shanahan briefly in the locker room after the game.
Said Lynch, a veteran safety: "I told the defense that we had to go play the way Darrent would expect us to."
And that's what they did. The defense made some big plays while giving up others, just like Williams who wasn't afraid to take a risk, or deal with the ramifications.
"Really, it was more emotional than I thought it was going to be," Williams said. "Judy was a great help to me, and I think I was to her. It was so special to see all of the guys."
I have said on many occasions that I am proud of the Broncos and of being a fan of an organization that exudes so much class. Last night was just another example of the team doing what it can, no matter how big or small, to ease the pain. The Broncos assured they were winners, no matter what the final score would have been.