With three Super Bowl victories under their belt, the Denver Broncos stand tall among the NFL’s most storied franchises. The Mile High City has been a breeding ground for the football elite. With one of the most devoted fan bases and a history of winning, this team has seen its share of Hall of Famers.
Here are the top-10 players to wear a Denver Broncos uniform…
10. Peyton Manning
Manning’s arrival in Denver in 2012 sparked a resurgence for the Broncos, as he guided the team to four consecutive AFC West division titles and a victory in Super Bowl 50, earning him his second championship ring. In 2013, at the age of 37, Manning won his fifth MVP after throwing for a league-leading 55 TDs and 5,477 yards. His cerebral approach to the game, impeccable accuracy, and record-breaking passing numbers cemented his legacy as one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time, and his impact on the Broncos franchise will be felt for generations to come.
9. Von Miller
Miller’s electrifying speed off the edge, exceptional pass-rushing technique, and penchant for making game-changing plays have made him one of the most dominant defensive players in Broncos history. His MVP performance in Super Bowl 50, highlighted by multiple sacks and forced turnovers, solidified his status as one of the greatest players in franchise history. In 10 seasons with the franchise, Miller earned eight Pro Bowl nods, was a three-time All-Pro and was named the Defensive Rookie of the Year.
8. Steve Atwater
Atwater was the enforcer of the Broncos’ defense during the late 1980s and 1990s, earning eight Pro Bowl selections and delivering bone-jarring hits that became his trademark. His leadership in the secondary, along with his ability to make game-changing plays, played a pivotal role in the Broncos’ success during his tenure with the team, and his induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2020 was a fitting tribute to his illustrious career.
7. Rod Smith
Smith’s journey from undrafted rookie to Denver’s all-time leader in receptions, receiving yards, and receiving touchdowns is a testament to his unparalleled work ethic, determination, and perseverance. His chemistry with quarterback John Elway and knack for making big plays in crucial moments endeared him to Broncos fans, and his contributions to the team’s back-to-back Super Bowl victories in the late 1990s cemented his legacy as one of the greatest wide receivers in franchise history.
6. Floyd Little
Little, affectionately known as “The Franchise,” was the cornerstone of the Broncos’ offense during the early years of the franchise — earning five Pro Bowl selections and leaving an indelible mark on the organization. His dynamic running style, versatility, and leadership both on and off the field made him a beloved figure in Broncos history, and his impact on the team’s success cannot be overstated.
5. Shannon Sharpe
Sharpe revolutionized the tight end position with his combination of size, speed, and receiving ability, becoming one of the most dominant pass-catching threats in NFL history. His clutch performances in big games, including two Super Bowl victories with the Broncos, solidified his legacy as one of the greatest tight ends to ever play the game, and his infectious personality and charisma endeared him to fans worldwide.
4. Randy Gradishar
Gradishar was the heart and soul of Denver’s defense during the 1970s, earning seven Pro Bowl selections and earning the NFL Defensive Player of the Year award in 1978. His intelligence, instincts, and tenacity on the field made him one of the most feared linebackers of his generation, and his leadership both on and off the field set the standard for excellence in the Broncos’ organization.
3. Champ Bailey
Bailey’s tenure with the Broncos was marked by his exceptional coverage skills, ball-hawking abilities, and consistency at the cornerback position, earning him twelve Pro Bowl selections and three All-Pro honors. Widely regarded as one of the premier cornerbacks of his era, Bailey’s impact on the Broncos’ defense was profound, as he routinely shut down opposing receivers and changed the course of games with his playmaking ability.
2. Terrell Davis
Davis was the engine of the Broncos’ offense during their back-to-back Super Bowl victories in the late 1990s, rushing for over 2,000 yards in the 1998 season and earning MVP honors in Super Bowl XXXII. TD was spectacular in the postseason. In ’97, Davis rushed for eight scores and topped 100 yards in all four of Denver’s victories. En route to the ’98 title, TD scored three more times on the ground and cracked the century mark in all three wins. Despite a career cut short by injuries, his remarkable postseason performances and tireless work ethic earned him a place in the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2017, solidifying his status as the greatest running back in Broncos history.
1. John Elway
Elway’s legendary career with the Broncos spanned 16 seasons, during which he became synonymous with clutch performances and late-game heroics, leading the team to five Super Bowl appearances and two championships. Elway’s illustrious career reached a fairy-tale conclusion as he clinched consecutive Super Bowl victories, triumphing over the Packers and Falcons. Renowned for his versatility, Elway showcased his prowess by scoring four rushing touchdowns in his Super Bowl appearances. With an impressive tally of 14 playoff victories, Elway solidifies his status among the game’s elite and his remarkable career winning percentage of .641 attests to his enduring greatness.