Bronco’s Stadium was originally built as a baseball stadium for the Denver Bears, part of the ill-fated establishment of a third major baseball league – The Continental League – in 1959. Bob Howsman, owner of the stadium, decided to save the stadium by bringing football to Denver. He was part of the group that created the American Football League on August 14, 1959. The Bronco’s began play in 1960 and although they won their first game over the Boston Patriots, they had a dismal first couple of years.
By 1968 the team was playing a little bit better and the city of Denver bought the stadium, expanded it, and renamed it Mile High. By the early 1970’s they began to have winning seasons and fans began showing their enthusiasm for the city’s only professional sports team.
They finally made it to their first conference championship in 1977 beating the Oakland Raiders 20 – 17, but were annihilated in the Super Bowl by the Dallas Cowboys 27 – 10. That was the first season of the beloved Barrel Man (Tim McKernan), who started his ritual of wearing nothing but an orange barrel, boots, and a cowboy hat to the games. Of course the 1980’s brought the Elway era that lasted 16 years and brought the Broncos to the Super Bowl five times, finally winning two back-to-back Super Bowls in 1997 and 1998.
The Bronco’s did not get back to the Super Bowl until the arrival of Peyton Manning. This will be Manning second attempt to bring the Bronco’s to Super Bowl victory against the Carolina Panthers.
All we can say is GO BRONCOS!