John Elway: In 1984 John Elway became the Denver Broncos’ starting quarterback. Under his leadership the Broncos became one of the most successful teams of the late 1980s and 1990s. Elway led the team to consecutive Super Bowl championships in 1998 and 1999.
John Elway, born in 1960, American football player, noted for his strong passing arm and physical agility. As quarterback of the Denver Broncos of the National Football League (NFL) from 1983 to 1999, Elway earned a reputation for engineering last-minute comebacks. He led the Broncos to five appearances in the Super Bowl.
John Albert Elway was born in Port Angeles, Washington, and educated at Stanford University. A three-sport star in high school, he became the starting quarterback in his second year at Stanford (1980) and was named an All-American. By the end of his senior season he was widely recognized as one of professional football’s leading quarterback prospects.
Although he was offered a contract to play professional baseball with the New York Yankees, Elway opted to enter the National Football League (NFL) draft. He was drafted as the number-one choice by the Baltimore Colts but was quickly traded, at his insistence, to the Denver Broncos. He had a disappointing first season with the Broncos, but by 1986 he had become a solid, reliable, often brilliant player.
During the late 1980s and early 1990s, Elway and the Broncos experienced success in regular season and conference play, followed by lopsided defeats in the Super Bowl. The team lost 39-20 to the New York Giants in 1987 and 42-10 to the Washington Redskins in 1988. Elway and the Broncos returned to the Super Bowl in 1990 against the San Francisco 49ers. San Francisco, however, posted one of the largest margins of victory in Super Bowl history and bested the Broncos, 55-10.
In 1998 Elway led the Broncos to their fourth Super Bowl, where they defeated the Green Bay Packers 31-24 for the franchise’s first championship title. The Broncos returned to the Super Bowl the following year and defeated the Atlanta Falcons, 34-19. Elway passed for 336 yards and one touchdown, and was named the most valuable player of the game. After the season he retired.
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