Anyone who spends time in Denver – heck, in all of Colorado – knows the Denver Broncos and Mile High Stadium are the biggest thing in town. In this post, we pay homage to the defending Super Bowl champions by giving them the Mile High Salute! And if Terrell Davis gets slighted once again on his long-deserved hall of fame induction, I’m not quite sure what I’m going to do! I’ve decided to wear his jersey to every game I go to until he makes it in. And given the number of miles it has on it, that better be today!
The first time I saw the Broncos in person was with my old man at the original Mile High stadium. I couldn’t have been much more than five or six years old. I can still smell the decades of peanut and beer grime oozing from the stands. Number 7 could scramble with the best of them, but in those days the Broncos fell short of hoisting the Lombardi Trophy. It wasn’t until I hit high school that the orange and blue brought home two consecutive titles. 1998 and 1999 were glorious years to be a sports fan in Colorado.
The new Mile High Stadium opened in 2001. The stadium was largely paid for by taxpayers in the Denver metropolitan area, and the property is owned by a special taxing district. More controversially, Invesco paid $120 million for the original naming rights, before Sports Authority secured the naming rights on August 16, 2011.
Just like the good remembrances I have of the old Mile High, I have numerous fond memories of attending games in the new stadium to watch both good and bad Broncos teams. And while I tend to only go to one game a year, I somehow find a way to get tickets to the coldest game of the year (the 2016 season was no exception when the Broncos squared off against the Patriots).
To me, watching American football can best be summed up in a few sentences:
“Well, it’s [Thunder] and blood, it’s dust and mud, it’s the roar of a Sunday crowd. It’s the white in the knuckles, the gold in the buckle, he’ll win the next go ’round. It’s boots and chaps, it’s cowboy hats, it’s spurs and latigo. It’s the ropes and the reins, and the joy and the pain, and they call the thing [the Broncos game]!” –Garth Brooks [with slight modifications] 😉
While the Broncos won’t place their cleats in the grass this Super Bowl Sunday, I’m an eternal optimist that Von Miller and company will be playing for the NFL title next year. And because I can’t stand the thought of another Tom Brady/Josh McDaniels/Bill Belichick lovefest, I can’t help but cheer on Atlanta!