Thirteen players have worn #65 for the Denver Broncos in team history. Ten Offensive Linemen and three Defensive Linemen. One is even a Hall of Fame player. Here they are for your inspection.
John Denvir was drafted by the San Diego Chargers in the 30th round (240th overall) of the 1962 AFL Draft and the Green Bay Packers in the 12th round (166th overall) of the 1961 NFL Draft. John played 11 games for the Broncos in 1962. Other than the fact that he went to College in Colorado and West Virginia, he doesn't have a thing in common with the singer.
Don Shackelford was drafted by the Denver Broncos in the 6th round (41st overall) of the 1964 AFL Draft and the Cleveland Browns in the 4th round (54th overall) of the 1964 NFL Draft. Don played 8 games in a Bronco uniform during the 1964 season and had a 13-yard kickoff return.
George Tarasovic was drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers in the 2nd round (18th overall) of the 1952 NFL Draft. He played 10 years in Pittsburgh and 3 years in Philadelphia before joining the Broncos for the 1966 season. George appeared in 6 games for the Broncos. Tarasovic had a storied career, but it was in Pittsburgh where he made his mark.
LeFrancis Arnold went Undrafted out of Oregon. He played 2 games for the Broncos in 1974.
Monte Smith was drafted by the Denver Broncos in the 9th round (236th overall) of the 1989 NFL Draft. He appeared in 14 games for the Broncos in 1989.
"I could run pretty good, and special teams is where I made my living right from the get-go. But because I could play both guard and tackle, it allowed some coaches to keep one less offensive lineman on the roster."
Now a couple of these guys were pretty good and had some time in Denver, but I think it's clear that the Greatest Bronco to wear #65 is...
Gary Zimmerman was drafted by the New York Giants in the 1st round (3rd overall) of the 1984 NFL Supplemental Draft. He was also drafted in the 2nd round (36th overall) by the Los Angeles Express in the 1984 USFL Draft. Gary subsequently signed with the Express and went onto start in 34 of 35 games at Left Tackle. The rights to Zimmerman were acquired by the Minnesota Vikings for two 2nd-round picks in the 1986 draft. So after the fledgling USFL folded in August of 1986, he joined the Minnesota Vikings where he played from 1986-1992.
"I remember the first day in camp after he came over from Minnesota, just the blow he delivered to those guys rushing the passer," Elway said. "It shocked me, the noise that it made when he struck the defensive lineman on a pass rush."
- One of a select few named to 2 NFL All-Decade Teams (1980s and 1990s)
- 7-Time Pro Bowler (1987, 1988, 1989, 1992, 1994, 1995 and 1996)
- 5-Time 1st-team All-Pro selection (1987, 1988, 1989, 1992, 1996)
- 3-Time 2nd-team All-Pro selection (1986, 1993, 1995)
- Played in 169 consecutive games and a total of 184 in his career.
- Pro Football Hall of Fame (2008)
- Denver Broncos Ring of Fame (2003)
- Oregon Sports Hall of Fame (2002)
- 2-Time All-USFL selection (1984, 1985)
- USFL All-Time Team