Good morning, Broncos Country!
Tradition is hard to build and harder still to maintain.
When an organization hits both, jackpot. Of course, there are various forms of tradition that branch from each of those roots. In regards to the Denver Broncos, it’s one of the few in the NFL that has built a rich tradition and been able to maintain it. The last four seasons and the death of Pat Bowlen have made it incredibly difficult to see a path back to the winning ways, but if any franchise can get it back, it’s the Broncos.
On the MHR Radio Podcast (Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, and Spotify), Adam Malnati and I discussed how that happens — connections to the past and former all-time great players. For example, Chris Harris, Von Miller and Derek Wolfe to Champ Bailey, who was one of Mr. B’s favorite players. Bailey was able to pass along to all three what it means to play for the Broncos and put that helmet and uniform on. Whether implicitly or explicitly, he showed what it means to be a Bronco. Now those three veterans can pass that along to the young core that is (hopefully) poised to lead the next generation.
It never hurts to have players on your roster who grew up fans of the team and just “know.” Guys like Phillip Lindsay and Dalton Risner can speak to that tradition. Throw in all of the alumni who are always back at the facility from the Orange Crush days to Peyton “Freaking” Manning, and that’s how Denver can find that path back. With looming issues off the field right now (ownership), the coaches and the roster can control what happens on the field. Breathing, feeling and living that tradition is so important because it makes it about more than the individual.
Of course it helps to have a quarterback to foster excitement and hope for 2020. Despite the ridiculous notion from some, that’s also true at head coach with Vic Fangio and the majority of his staff — save for special teams. Throw in gobs of salary cap space and the potential for a third-straight strong NFL Draft, and it’s OK to think “this is about to change.” Remember, if the three games Denver lost in the final seconds flip, this team is in playoff contention — even with the two games against the Kansas City Chiefs.
It makes even more crucial that this young core knows the rich tradition and what it means to play for the Broncos.
MHR Radio is now on ApplePodcasts, Google Play, iHeartRadio, Spotify, Stitcher,TuneIn and anywhere else you get your podcasts. Please subscribe to the one that fits your fancy, and also rate and review what you hear.
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