John Albert Elway, Jr. (born June 28, 1960) is a former American football quarterback and current General Manager and Executive Vice President of Football Operations for the Denver Broncos of the National Football League (NFL). Elway played college football at Stanford and his entire 16-year professional career with the Denver Broncos. At the time of his retirement in early 1999, Elway recorded the most victories by a starting quarterback and statistically was the second most prolific passer in NFL history. He was also a profilic rusher of the ball, being one of only two players ever to score a rushing touchdown in four different Super Bowls (the other being Thurman Thomas) and the only quarterback to do so. (156 attempts) He led his teams to six AFC Championship Games and five Super Bowls, winning his last two.
Elway set several career records for passing attempts and completions while at Stanford and also received All-American honors. He was the first selection in the 1983 NFL Draft, famously known as the quarterback class of 1983, where he was taken by the Baltimore Colts before being traded to the Denver Broncos. In January 1987, Elway embarked on one of the most notable performances in sports and in NFL history, helping engineer a 98-yard, game-tying touchdown drive in the AFC Championship Game against the Cleveland Browns. The moment is known in National Football League lore as "The Drive." Following that game in Cleveland, Elway and the Broncos lost in Super Bowl XXI to the New York Giants. It was the first of a record five Super Bowl starts at quarterback for Elway, a record that he solely held until 2012, when Tom Brady earned his fifth Super Bowl start. In 2015, Tom Brady would break the record with his sixth Super Bowl start.
After two more Super Bowl losses, the Broncos entered a period of decline; however, that ended during the 1997 season, as Elway and Denver won their first Super Bowl title by defeating the Green Bay Packers 31–24 in Super Bowl XXXII. The Broncos repeated as champions the following season in Super Bowl XXXIII by defeating the Atlanta Falcons 34–19. Elway was voted MVP of that Super Bowl, which would be the last game of his career.
Elway was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2004 in his first year of eligibility. Since his retirement, Elway has owned several businesses, including co-ownership of the inactive Colorado Crush, an arena football team.
By Dean Hanley
Page : 1