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John Lynch pays tribute to Steve Atwater

As John Lynch said: “I’m getting chills right now thinking about Steve Atwater.” Broncos fans can attest to that.

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Denver Broncos Steve Atwater (C) and Trevor Pryce Photo credit should read DOUG COLLIER/AFP via Getty Images

Good morning, Broncos Country!

We are closer and closer to the start of Denver Broncos training camp.

We’re also closer to the Pro Football Hall of Fame induction ceremony where three former Broncos are set to get their busts added to the museum on Aug. 8 in Canton. Steve Atwater, John Lynch and Peyton Manning. There will always be a debate about Lynch, but he did play the same amount of time in Denver as Manning (four years).

Regardless, it’s a great honor for all three. But what stood out in a conference “Zoom” call earlier this week is how much Atwater influenced Lynch early in his career with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

“I’m thrilled for him, and I’m thrilled for his family,” Lynch told reporters. “I’m getting chills right now thinking about Steve Atwater. I remember early in my career (Tampa Bay assistant) Herm Edwards gave me an old VHS tape when he and (coach) Tony (Dungy) first arrived. They said, ‘Study Steve, because you have a lot of components of your game that are similar.’”

There is no greater complement than to have players at your position mimic what you do. But that’s how great Atwater was. This is no secret to Broncos Country, but to have great players like Lynch say it, reiterates and reverberates that to the people outside the Broncos how truly special the Smiling Assassin was.

“I feel like I have a lot in common with (Atwater), because he was fierce and physical on the field, and not someone you wanted to mess with,” Lynch said. “He was someone I admired greatly (as a player). But he’s one of the sweetest, kindest people you’ll meet off the field.”

Over the course of the franchise’s history, Denver has had some incredible safeties. A who’s who of legendary players.

Now that Atwater is finally headed to Canton, hopefully his teammate and the player who influenced him will start to get the recognition he deserves. Dennis Smith is one of the best to ever play the position.

Demaryius “To the House” shirt

Speaking of former Broncos, BreakingT has an awesome new shirt that pays tribute to one of the best receivers in franchise history.

The new Demaryius Thomas “To the House” shirt is officially licensed by the NFLPA.

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