Pat Bowlen

Patrick Dennis Bowlen (born February 18, 1944) is the majority owner of the Denver Broncos of the National Football League (NFL). The Bowlen Family, including his two brothers John Bowlen and Bill Bowlen, and sister Marybeth Bowlen, purchased the team from Edgar Kaiser in 1984. He served as the Broncos CEO from his purchase of the club in 1984 until July 2014, when he stepped down as Broncos' CEO due to the onset and progression of Alzheimer's disease.[1]

Pat Bowlen
Candid photograph of Bowlen walking on a football sideline wearing blue-grey slacks, a light blue shirt with a red tie and sunglasses.
Bowlen in 2010
Denver Broncos
Position:Principal owner
Personal information
Born:February 18, 1944 (age 75)
Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin
Career information
High school:Campion Jesuit
Career history
As executive:
Career highlights and awards

Early life

Bowlen was born in Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin, the son of Arvella (née Woods) and Paul Dennis Bowlen, who became a millionaire in the Canadian oil business, founding Regent Drilling as a wildcatter. The oil company is now owned by his brother John.[2] Bowlen is Catholic. [3] He attended Campion Jesuit Catholic High School[4] and later earned degrees in business (1965) and law (1968) from the University of Oklahoma. The younger Bowlen became wealthy in his own right by becoming a successful lawyer in Edmonton, Alberta. He also worked as an executive for his father's company and as a real estate developer and had major investments in the mining industry.

Bowlen is an initiated member of the Pi Kappa Alpha International Fraternity. He was initiated by the University of Oklahoma, Beta Omicron chapter in 1963. He is a member of the bar association and law society of Alberta, Canada. Bowlen is also one of the largest donors to the University of Denver.

Denver Broncos ownership

From 1999 to 2008, Bowlen and the Broncos were involved in several legal battles against one-time owner Edgar Kaiser. In 1998, Bowlen agreed to sell retired football legend John Elway a share in the team.[5] When Bowlen let the existence of the offer slip out to Kaiser while both were at the 1999 Bohemian Grove,[6] Kaiser sued, claiming a breach of contract. Kaiser asserted that he had a right of first refusal if any deal is made involving franchise ownership. In 2004, a jury ruled in favor of Kaiser and a federal judge decreed that Kaiser was entitled to purchase back 10% of the Broncos using the identical purchase terms offered to Elway. Bowlen appealed the original verdict that ruled in favor of Kaiser and won in 2008, as the appellate court ruled that the structure of the Bowlen-Elway deal did not violate the original right of first refusal agreement.[7]

On December 30, 2008, Broncos head coach and Vice President of Football Operations Mike Shanahan was fired by Bowlen after a 14-year tenure as the head coach. Bowlen stated he wanted his team to go in a different direction. He undertook a search over two weeks and eventually chose Josh McDaniels, who at the time was the offensive coordinator of the New England Patriots. Subsequently, after a losing streak in the 2010 season, McDaniels was fired as head coach of the Broncos.[8] On February 12, 2009, Bowlen appointed Brian Xanders as the team's sole general manager and fired Jim Goodman and Jeff Goodman.

Within two weeks of the end of the 2010-11 regular season, Bowlen and the Broncos had hired former Carolina Panthers' coach John Fox to be their new head coach. Although Bowlen had discussions with Fox before the hiring, new front-office executive John Elway was mostly responsible for the hiring. By late 2009, rumors had begun to emerge that Bowlen had stepped out of the spotlight because of short-term memory loss.[9] He told The Denver Post columnist Woody Paige that his memory wasn't what it used to be and that he couldn't recall details of the Broncos back-to-back Super Bowl titles in the late 1990s. Starting in 2010, Bowlen no longer played a major role in the Broncos' decision making, and Executive VP John Elway and President Joe Ellis assumed control. On July 23, 2014, due to complications with Alzheimer's disease, he officially relinquished control of the team to Joe Ellis.[10]

On November 1, 2015, Bowlen was inducted into the Broncos' Ring of Fame, earning him a bronze plaque that stands on the south side of Sports Authority Field at Mile High.[11]

Since Bowlen acquired the team in 1984, the Broncos have the highest winning percentage of any franchise in the National Football League (334 wins, 212 losses, and 1 tie, for a .612 winning percentage), passing the San Francisco 49ers after the 2015 season.

Colorado Crush ownership

Besides being owner and CEO of the Broncos, Bowlen was also part-owner of the Arena Football League's Colorado Crush. He shared ownership with Denver-based sports mogul Stan Kroenke and legendary Broncos quarterback John Elway. The Crush entered the AFL as an expansion franchise in 2003. After going through a 2-14 season in 2003, the team became a perennial playoff contender and one of the league's top franchises. The Crush won the Arena Football League Championship in 2005.

Denver Outlaws ownership

In 2006, Major League Lacrosse decided to expand adding the Denver Outlaws to its league of teams. The Denver Outlaws have been the most winning franchise that Bowlen has ever owned, boasting a regular season win percentage of .690 since their creation. The Outlaws have been to the playoffs every year of their existence except one (2015) and advanced to the championship game eight times (2006, 2008, 2009, 2012, 2014, 2016, 2017, and 2018), winning the championship in 2014, 2016, and 2018.

Awards and honors

  • Inducted to the Pro Football Hall of Fame (class of 2019)
  • Three-time Super Bowl champion (as owner of the Denver Broncos)
  • ArenaBowl XIX champion (as part owner of the Colorado Crush)
  • Three-time Steinfeld Cup champion (as owner of the Denver Outlaws)
  • Broncos Ring of Fame (class of 2015)
  • Colorado Business Hall of Fame (class of 2015)


  1. ^
  2. ^ [1]
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^ Prendergast, Alan (January 3, 2002). "Pat's Big Fumble". Westword. Denver, Colorado. Retrieved July 23, 2014.
  6. ^ Branch, John (September 15, 2002). "Lawsuit threatens Bowlen/ Former owner Kaiser accuses Broncos boss of violating pact". The Gazette (Colorado Springs). Colorado Springs, Colorado. Archived from the original on September 24, 2015. Retrieved July 23, 2014.
  7. ^ Paton, James (October 2, 2008). "Clock runs out for ex-Broncos owner". Rocky Mountain News. Denver, Colorado. Retrieved July 23, 2014.
  8. ^ Klis, Mike. "McDaniels fired as Broncos coach after controversy, losses pile up". The Denver Post. Retrieved August 24, 2014.
  9. ^ Sources: Pat Bowlen no longer Broncos' major decision maker amid "memory loss" questions,
  10. ^ Belson, Ken. "Health Problems Lead Owner of Broncos to Cede Control". NY Times. Retrieved August 24, 2014.
  11. ^ Renck, Troy (November 1, 2015). "Broncos running game keys upset victory over Packers". The Denver Post. Retrieved November 1, 2015.

External links

1983 Denver Broncos season

The 1983 Denver Broncos season was its 24th in professional football and 14th in the National Football League (NFL). The team finished the year with nine wins and seven losses, giving them 3rd place in the AFC West and their first playoff berth in four seasons. It was the third season under head coach Dan Reeves.

Before the season, the Broncos traded with the Baltimore Colts for the rights to first overall pick in the 1983 draft, quarterback John Elway. He started ten games for the Broncos as a rookie, and the team won four of them.

In his first two starts, both road wins, Elway left the game trailing, relieved by veteran Steve DeBerg.After three straight losses, Elway was benched by Reeves in early October; and DeBerg led the team to four consecutive victories and a 6–3 record. A shoulder injury in a loss in Seattle sidelined him and Elway again became the starter. In the rematch with Seattle two weeks later in Denver, Elway was out with the flu and third-string rookie Gary Kubiak led the Broncos to a win.Elway's finest game as a rookie came in Week 15, the Broncos' second game against Baltimore, the team that drafted him. Denver trailed 19–0 at the start of the fourth quarter, until Elway threw for three touchdowns in the final period to win 21–19 and kept their playoff hopes alive. The following week was a lopsided road loss at Kansas City in −30 °F (−34 °C) wind chill, but the Broncos made the playoffs, gaining the final AFC berth over Cleveland, also at 9–7, whom they defeated in Week 14.DeBerg started the wild card playoff loss in Seattle, and was relieved by Elway in the fourth quarter.The Broncos' wild-card playoff loss to the Seahawks marked the team's only playoff appearance during the tenure of the team's then-owner Edgar Kaiser Jr.. Pat Bowlen bought the team from Kaiser in the offseason.

1992 Denver Broncos season

The 1992 Denver Broncos season was the team's 33rd year in professional football and its 23rd with the National Football League (NFL).

1993 Denver Broncos season

The 1993 Denver Broncos season was the team's 34th year in professional football and its 24th with the National Football League.

1993 was the first year for new head coach Wade Phillips, who had been the team's defensive coordinator since 1989.

2008 Denver Broncos season

The 2008 Denver Broncos season was the franchise's 39th season in the National Football League, the 49th overall and the 25th under the ownership of Pat Bowlen. The Broncos improved from their 7–9 record from 2007, but failed to make the playoffs with an 8–8 record.

Entering Week 15, the Broncos had an 8–5 record — three games ahead of the San Diego Chargers for the AFC West division title. The Chargers ended the season on a four-game winning streak, while the Broncos ended the season on a three-game losing streak, losing 52–21 to the San Diego Chargers in the regular season finale. The Broncos and Chargers both finished 8–8, however, the Broncos lost the tiebreaker due to the Chargers' owning a better division record (5–1 to 3–3). On December 30, 2008, two days after the regular season ended, Mike Shanahan was fired as the Broncos' head coach after 14 seasons.

2014 Denver Broncos season

The 2014 Denver Broncos season was the franchise's 45th season in the National Football League and the 55th overall. It also marked the third season with Peyton Manning as the team's starting quarterback as well as the fourth and final season under head coach John Fox.

The Broncos entered the 2014 season as the defending AFC champions, hoping to compete for another Super Bowl run, following a 43–8 loss to the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl XLVIII. The offseason was dominated by numerous roster changes, including the retirement of longtime cornerback Champ Bailey. One day before the start of the team's training camp, the Broncos announced that owner Pat Bowlen relinquished control of the team due to his battle with Alzheimer's disease.Like the previous two seasons, the Broncos set numerous individual, league and franchise records, including Peyton Manning becoming the NFL's all-time leader in career touchdown passes and wide receiver Demaryius Thomas setting a new franchise record for receiving yards in a single season, despite the team's offensive philosophy changing toward a run-oriented offense in the second half of the season. Manning threw a total of 40 touchdown passes, but only four came in the last four games of the regular season and the playoffs. In addition, Manning achieved only one 300-yard passing game within the team's last seven games (including the playoffs), courtesy of the emergence of running back C. J. Anderson, who achieved 1,282 all-purpose yards, the majority of which came in the second half of the regular season and the playoffs. One day after the Broncos' 24–13 playoff loss to the Indianapolis Colts in the Divisional round of the playoffs, media reports indicated that Manning had been playing with a strained quadriceps since a Week 15 game against the San Diego Chargers.The Broncos clinched their fourth consecutive AFC West division title, a first-round bye and the AFC's No. 2 seed, but lost in the Divisional round of the playoffs for the third time in four seasons.

2019 Denver Broncos season

The 2019 Denver Broncos season will be the franchise's upcoming 50th season in the National Football League, the 60th overall and the first under new head coach Vic Fangio.

A Few Seconds of Panic

A Few Seconds of Panic is a nonfiction first-person narrative by Stefan Fatsis, published in 2008. The book chronicles Fatsis, a professional 43-year-old sportswriter working for the Wall Street Journal, and his attempt to play in the National Football League. Along the way, he relates the personal stories and struggles that professional football players face in the league. After some setbacks, Fatsis eventually finds some success as a backup placekicker for the Denver Broncos. The book's title comes from Jason Elam's description of being a kicker as "hours and hours of boredom surrounded by a few seconds of panic."A Few Seconds of Panic has been compared to George Plimpton's Paper Lion, a 1966 book wherein the author joins the Detroit Lions as a backup quarterback.

Broncos Stadium at Mile High

Broncos Stadium at Mile High, previously known as Invesco Field at Mile High and Sports Authority Field at Mile High, and commonly known as Mile High, New Mile High or Mile High Stadium, is an American football stadium in Denver, Colorado, named Mile High due to the city's elevation of 5,280 feet (1,610 m). The primary tenant is the Denver Broncos of the National Football League (NFL). It opened in 2001 to replace Mile High Stadium and was largely paid for by taxpayers. Invesco paid $120 million for the original naming rights, before Sports Authority secured them in 2011.Despite its sponsor's liquidation and closure in 2016, the Sports Authority name remained on the stadium for two years afterwards because of regulatory hurdles. Nevertheless, the Broncos announced on January 2, 2018 that the stadium's exterior signage would be removed. The stadium took on its current name on a temporary basis on June 20, 2018 after the city's stadium authority approved the change, hoping to resell naming rights.

Carmen Policy

Carmen Policy (born January 26, 1943) is an attorney and American football executive best known for his work for the San Francisco 49ers during the 1980s and 1990s. He also led the Cleveland Browns until he sold his minority ownership stake in 2004.

Colorado Crush

The Colorado Crush were an arena football team based in Denver, Colorado. They began play as a 2003 Arena Football League as an expansion team. The Crush played in the Central Division of the American Conference until the Arena Football League suspended operations in 2009. They were last coached by Mike Dailey and owned by a coalition of Denver sports figures led by John Elway.

Negotiations with a Denver ownership group (known not to be the Elway group) are underway for a future AFL expansion franchise in Denver, but it is unclear whether or not it will use the Crush branding or that of the Denver Dynamite, an earlier AFL team. Like the Dallas Desperados, the Crush's branding is partially based on NFL teams (the Denver Broncos and St. Louis Rams, though to a much lesser degree), which could give Pat Bowlen or Stan Kroenke a potential veto over any usage of the Colorado Crush branding. On July 15, 2015, the Crush name was acquired by the Indoor Football League franchise formerly known as the Colorado Ice as the trademark for the name expired in 2014 according to their ownership.

Denver Broncos

The Denver Broncos are a professional American football franchise based in Denver, Colorado. The Broncos compete as a member club of the National Football League (NFL)'s American Football Conference (AFC) West division. They began play in 1960 as a charter member of the American Football League (AFL) and joined the NFL as part of the merger in 1970. The Broncos are owned by the Pat Bowlen trust and currently play home games at Broncos Stadium at Mile High (formerly known as Invesco Field at Mile High from 2001–2010 and Sports Authority Field at Mile High from 2011–2017). Prior to that, they played at Mile High Stadium from 1960 to 2000.

The Broncos were barely competitive during their 10-year run in the AFL and their first seven years in the NFL. They did not complete a winning season until 1973. In 1977, four years later, they qualified for the playoffs for the first time in franchise history and advanced to Super Bowl XII. Since 1975, the Broncos have become one of the NFL's most successful teams, having suffered only seven losing seasons. They have won eight AFC Championships (1977, 1986, 1987, 1989, 1997, 1998, 2013, 2015), and three Super Bowl championships (1997 (XXXII), 1998 (XXXIII), 2015 (50)), and share the NFL record for most Super Bowl losses (5 — tied with the New England Patriots). They have nine players in the Pro Football Hall of Fame: John Elway, Floyd Little, Shannon Sharpe, Gary Zimmerman, Willie Brown, Tony Dorsett, Terrell Davis, Brian Dawkins, Champ Bailey.

History of the Denver Broncos

The history of the Denver Broncos American football club began when the team was chartered a member of the American Football League in 1960. The Broncos have played in the city of Denver, Colorado throughout their entire history. The Broncos did not win any titles as members of the AFL. Since the 1970 AFL–NFL merger, the Broncos have won 15 division titles, and played in eight Super Bowls, following the 1977, 1986, 1987, 1989, 1997, 1998, 2013, and 2015 seasons. They won Super Bowl XXXII, Super Bowl XXXIII and Super Bowl 50. Their most famous player is former quarterback John Elway, starting quarterback in five Super Bowls and holder of many NFL records. The Broncos currently play in the National Football League's AFC West division. Their current leadership includes owner Pat Bowlen, CEO Joe Ellis, VP John Elway, and head coach Vance Joseph.

For much of their first 3 decades, excluding teams in Texas, they were the only major pro football team between Kansas City and California (and the only team in the Interior West). This distinction ended in 1988, when the Cardinals moved from St. Louis to Phoenix. The Broncos remain the only current AFC West (formerly AFL West) team to never relocate or change its name.

Joe Ellis

Josiah Wear Ellis (born November 16, 1958) is an American football administrator who is currently the President and CEO of the Denver Broncos of the National Football League (NFL).

John Mara

John K. Mara, Esq ( MAR-ə (born December 1, 1954) is the president, CEO, and co-owner of the New York Giants.

Josh McDaniels

Joshua Thomas McDaniels (born April 22, 1976) is an American football coach who is the offensive coordinator of the New England Patriots of the National Football League (NFL). McDaniels was one of the few members of the Patriots' coaching staff that has been there for all six of their Super Bowl wins; he was with the team initially from 2001 to 2008, serving in multiple capacities. He is the highest-paid offensive coordinator in the NFL.

In 2009, McDaniels was hired as the head coach of the Denver Broncos. At the time of his hiring, 33-year-old McDaniels was the youngest head coach in the NFL, although less than a week later the Tampa Bay Buccaneers named Raheem Morris, who is five months younger, as their head coach. McDaniels was fired by Denver after a 3–9 start in 2010. He spent the 2011 season as offensive coordinator of the St. Louis Rams, but he was released by the Rams for the 2011 playoffs to serve as an offensive assistant for the Patriots in their run to Super Bowl XLVI, before returning to the team as offensive coordinator that following season.

List of Denver Broncos head coaches

The Denver Broncos are a professional American football franchise based in Denver, Colorado. They are members of the West Division of the American Football Conference (AFC) in the National Football League (NFL). The team began playing in 1960 as a charter member of the American Football League (AFL), and joined the NFL as part of the AFL-NFL merger. The team has played their home games at Sports Authority Field at Mile High since 2001. The Broncos are currently owned by Pat Bowlen.There have been 15 head coaches for the Broncos franchise. The franchise's first head coach was Frank Filchock, who coached until 1961. Mike Shanahan is the franchise's all-time leader for the most regular season games coached (208), the most regular season game wins (130), and the most playoff game wins (8). Shanahan and Dan Reeves, are tied for the most playoffs games coached (13). Shanahan was the first Broncos head coach to win a Super Bowl following the 1997 season, and repeated the feat following the 1998 season. The Broncos next Super Bowl victory was for Super Bowl 50 following the 2015 season under the leadership of coach Gary Kubiak who had previously played for Denver and served as an assistant coach. Jack Faulkner, John Ralston, Red Miller, and Reeves have been named the United Press International (UPI) NFL Coach of the Year, at least once with the Broncos. Filchock, Faulkner, Mac Speedie, Jerry Smith, Ralston, and Miller spent their entire coaching careers with the Broncos. Speedie, Ray Malavasi, Miller, Shanahan, and Kubiak have been assistant coaches with the Broncos before they became head coaches with the Broncos.

List of NFL franchise owners

The following is a list of current National Football League franchise owners.

† Majority or plurality owner, rather than outright owner.

‡ Family ownership of club has been passed on/split by descendant(s) of previous owner.Benson, Bidwill, McCaskey, Brown, Ford, Irsay, Hunt, Mara, Davis, Rooney, Glazer, Smith, Spanos, York, and Adams-Strunk represent ownership that has been longer than year listed, as teams have been owned by their families longer than listed.

1 Owner held stake prior to this date.2 Child/heir of original owner of franchise.3 Child/heir of heir of original owner of franchise.4 Public corporation with a grandfathered exception to current NFL ownership rules. The team is governed by a Board of Directors, and Mark H. Murphy represents the team as President and CEO.5 This owner is not active in day-to-day operations.6 Paul G. Allen, the Seahawks' most recent owner, died October 15, 2018 without any immediate next of kin. His younger sister Jody Allen is serving as executor of his estate.

Kansas City Chiefs: Clark Hunt, one of four co-owning siblings (the others being Lamar Hunt Jr., Daniel Hunt and Sharon Munson), represents the team in league affairs.

New York Jets: Christopher Johnson is acting owner due to Robert's appointment as United States Ambassador to the United Kingdom.

Tampa Bay Buccanners: Bryan Glazer represents the four co-owning siblings, including Edward Glazer, Joel Glazer and Darcie Kassewitz.

Tennessee Titans: Amy Strunk represents the five co-owning siblings -- two sisters (Smith), and the widow of their brother (Lewis), and his sons (the Adams brothers), all the children of founding owner Bud Adams.

Pro Football Hall of Fame

The Pro Football Hall of Fame is the hall of fame for professional American football, located in Canton, Ohio. Opened in 1963, the Hall of Fame enshrines exceptional figures in the sport of professional football, including players, coaches, franchise owners, and front-office personnel, almost all of whom made their primary contributions to the game in the National Football League (NFL); the Hall inducts between four and eight new enshrinees each year. The Hall of Fame's Mission is to "Honor the Heroes of the Game, Preserve its History, Promote its Values & Celebrate Excellence EVERYWHERE."

The Hall of Fame class of 2019 (Tony Gonzalez, Ed Reed, Champ Bailey, Ty Law, Kevin Mawae, Pat Bowlen, Gil Brandt, and Johnny Robinson) were selected into the Pro Football Hall of Fame by a 48-member selection committee and announced on February 2, 2019. Including the 2019 class, there are now a total of 326 members of the Hall of Fame.

Ted Sundquist

Carl Mathew Theodore "Ted" Sundquist II (born May 1, 1962) is an American football player, manager and commentator. He spent sixteen years working in the National Football League for the Denver Broncos franchise. Sundquist was hired in 1992 as the Player Personnel Assistant, and two years later promoted to Director of College Scouting. In 2001, Pat Bowlen promoted Sundquist to General Manager.

Key personnel
Retired numbers
Division championships (15)
Conference championships (8)
League championships (3)
Current league affiliations
Former league affiliation
Seasons (58)
Running backs
Wide receivers /
Tight ends
Pre-modern era
two-way players
Defensive backs
and punters

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