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The 1967 Denver Broncos introduce Floyd Little to franchise lore

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

1967 would represent the year the Denver Broncos franchise would begin the long turn of the corner as for the first time in its history a first round draft choice chose to sign with the Broncos. Hall of Fame running back, Floyd Little became "The Franchise" when the Broncos selected him 6th overall in the 1967 NFL Draft.

Some highlights from this season was that Floyd Little was voted by his teammates to be a team captain as a rookie. Then the Broncos became the first AFL team to defeat an NFL team when they defeated the Detroit Lions 13-7 in an exhibition game prior to the start of the season.

But more importantly, the team changed the color of its helmets from orange to the blue we’d all recognize until the late 1990s. The Broncos reprised the first game of franchise history by defeating the Boston Patriots in a season opener. Sadly, they would go on to lose the next nine games. The 1960s were not kind to us.

The 3-11 record was worse than the season before, but on paper this team should have won more games than in 1966. Either that or more likely, the 1966 team shouldn’t have won any games.

1967 Preseason
29-Jul 7,000 L 19-2 Miami Dolphins Canton, Ohio
Aug. 5 21,228 W 13-7 Detroit Lions University of Denver Stadium
Aug. 18 31,850 W 14-3 Minnesota Vikings University of Denver Stadium
Aug. 27 6,500 W 21-17 Oakland Raiders North Platte, Nebraska
1967 Regular Season
Sept. 3 35,488 W 26-21 Boston Patriots Bears Stadium
Sept. 10 25,423 L 51-0 Oakland Raiders Oakland Coliseum
Sept. 17 29,381 L 35-21 Miami Dolphins Orange Bowl
Sept. 24 35,365 L 38-24 New York Jets Bears Stadium
Oct. 1 21,798 L 10-6 Houston Oilers Rice Stadium
Oct. 8 35,188 L 17-16 Buffalo Bills Bears Stadium
Oct. 22 34,464 L 38-21 San Diego Chargers Bears Stadium
Oct. 29 44,002 L 52-9 Kansas City Chiefs Municipal Stadium
Nov. 5 29,043 L 21-17 Oakland Raiders Bears Stadium
Nov. 12 30,392 L 20-18 Houston Oilers Bears Stadium
Nov. 19 30,891 W 21-20 Buffalo Bills War Memorial Stadium
Nov. 23 34,586 L 24-20 San Diego Chargers Balboa Stadium
Dec. 3 61,615 W 33-24 New York Jets Shea Stadium
Dec. 17 31,660 L 38-24 Kansas City Chiefs Bears Stadium

MHR MVP of 1967

Al Denson. As good as Floyd Little would become for the Broncos, his rookie season was not enough to eclipse the career year Al Denson enjoyed at wide receiver. Denson snagged 46 catches for 899 yards and 11 of the team’s 17 total passing touchdowns on the season. That’s a one-man wrecking crew right there.

His two best games of the season were wins at home against the Boston Patriots, catching 4 passes for 131 yards with two touchdowns and on the road against the Buffalo Bills, catching 7 passes for 102 yards with two touchdowns. Outside that, he was just the only guy catching passes and getting yards on the whole team.

Who gets your MVP?

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