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The Best Denver Broncos of All Time

Updated April 12, 2020 60.2k votes 5.3k voters 213.3k views106 items

List RulesPlease rank the players based on their time with the Broncos only

This list ranks the best Denver Broncos of all time. The Denver Broncos are one of the charter members of the original AFL. Formed in 1960, the Broncos early years weren't much to write home about. But a Super Bowl berth in 1978 started the Broncos on a path to greatness and attracted star players to the team. Many of the teams after 1978 featured some of the greatest Broncos players of all time. The Broncos major turning point came when they acquired quarterback John Elway in a blockbuster trade with the Baltimore Colts. Considered one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time, Elway took the Broncos to six Super Bowls during his illustrious career in Denver. Elway is one of the best Broncos ever and an all time great.

As legendary as Elway is, he couldn't have gotten to six Super Bowls without a little help. When the Broncos defeated the Packers to capture their first Super Bowl title, it couldn't have done without one of the greatest running backs of all time. Terrell Davis is one of the most beloved Broncos superstars and on the account of his power running, Davis won the MVP of Super Bowl XXXII. Other Bronco greats like Shannon Sharpe, Rod Smith, Ed McCaffrey, and Steve Atwater were on those championship teams. After floundering without Elway, the Broncos picked up another all time great in the form of Peyton Manning. Even with his advanced age, Manning will be considered one of the best Broncos of all time, especially if he's able to capture a Super Bowl title.

This is a list of the best Denver Broncos of all time, including their current roster and Denver Broncos past players. If you notice someone is missing from this list of all time Broncos, feel free to add him. Vote or rerank this list of the greatest Broncos ever according to who you think should be considered the best in this NFL franchise history, then head over and check out the top Broncos kickers ever and best Broncos tight ends.

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    353

    John Elway

    Quarterback

    BirthplacePort Angeles, Washington, United States of America

    Age61

    TeamsDenver Broncos

    John Albert Elway Jr. (born June 28, 1960) is a former American football quarterback who is currently general manager and President of Football Operations of the Denver Broncos of the National...  more

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    #1121 of 1,316 The Best Athletes Of All Time#2 of 86 The Best No. 1 Overall NFL Draft Picks Of All Time, Ranked

  • 2
    1,662
    317

    Terrell Davis

    Running back

    BirthplaceSan Diego, California, United States of America

    Age48

    TeamsDenver Broncos, Georgia Bulldogs football team, Long Beach State 49ers football

    Terrell Lamar Davis (born October 28, 1972) is a former American football running back who played for the Denver Broncos of the National Football League (NFL) from 1995 to 2001. Davis was elected...  more

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    #17 of 206 The Best NFL Running Backs of All Time#6 of 26 NFL Players Whose Careers Ended Too Soon

  • 3
    1,463
    299

    BirthplaceChicago, Illinois, United States of America

    Age53

    TeamsDenver Broncos, Baltimore Ravens, Savannah State Tigers football

    Shannon Sharpe (born June 26, 1968) is a former American football tight end who played for the Denver Broncos and Baltimore Ravens of the National Football League (NFL), as well as a former analyst...  more

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    #4 of 87 The Greatest Tight Ends Of All Time#15 of 95 The Best Baltimore Ravens of All Time

  • 4
    1,677
    383

    Von Miller

    Outside Linebacker, Defensive end

    BirthplaceDallas, Texas

    Age32

    TeamsDenver Broncos

    Vonnie B'Vsean Miller Jr. (born March 26, 1989) is an American football outside linebacker for the Denver Broncos of the National Football League (NFL). Miller played college football at Texas A&M,...  more

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    #114 of 197 The Best Hot Ones Guests Ever#14 of 53 The Most Likable Active NFL Players

  • 5
    1,332
    293

    Steve Atwater

    Safety, Defensive back

    BirthplaceChicago, Illinois

    Age54

    TeamsDenver Broncos, New York Jets, Arkansas Razorbacks football

    Stephen Dennis Atwater (born October 28, 1966) is a former American football player who spent most of his career playing free safety for the Denver Broncos of the National Football League (NFL)....  more

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    #103 of 1,323 The Best Football Players Ever#2 of 322 People Who Should Be in the Pro Football Hall of Fame

  • 6
    1,086
    226

    Rod Smith

    Wide receiver

    BirthplaceTexarkana, Arkansas, United States of America

    Age51

    TeamsDenver Broncos

    Roderick Duane Smith (born May 15, 1970) is a former American football wide receiver who played thirteen seasons for the Denver Broncos of the National Football League (NFL). He played college...  more
  • 7
    1,887
    496

    Peyton Manning

    Quarterback

    BirthplaceNew Orleans, Louisiana, United States of America

    Age45

    TeamsIndianapolis Colts, Denver Broncos

    Peyton Williams Manning (born March 24, 1976) is a former American football quarterback who played 18 seasons in the National Football League (NFL), primarily with the Indianapolis Colts. Considered...  more

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    #131 of 243 The Most Trustworthy Celebrities In The World#3 of 120 The Best Quarterbacks Of All Time

  • 8
    966
    222

    Floyd Little

    Halfback

    BirthplaceNew Haven, Connecticut

    Age79

    TeamsDenver Broncos, Syracuse Orange football

    Floyd Douglas Little (born July 4, 1942 - January 1, 2021) was an American football halfback, and a three-time All-American at Syracuse University. In 1967, he was the 6th selection of the first...  more
  • 9
    739
    137

    BirthplaceFullerton, California

    Age59

    Gary Wayne Zimmerman (born December 13, 1961) is a former American football offensive tackle in the National Football League. Zimmerman played for the Minnesota Vikings from 1986 to 1992 and for the...  more

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    #30 of 98 The Best Oregon Ducks of All Time#24 of 134 The Best Minnesota Vikings Of All Time

  • 10
    1,450
    412

    Champ Bailey

    Cornerback

    BirthplaceFort Campbell, Kentucky

    Age43

    TeamsWashington Redskins, Denver Broncos, Georgia Bulldogs football team

    Roland "Champ" Bailey Jr. (born June 22, 1978) is a former American football cornerback in the National Football League (NFL). He played college football for Georgia, where he earned consensus...  more

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    #16 of 106 The Fastest NFL Players of All Time#2 of 44 The Best University of Georgia Football Players of All Time

  • 11
    991
    227

    Ed McCaffrey

    Wide receiver

    BirthplaceWaynesboro, Pennsylvania, United States of America

    Age53

    TeamsStanford Cardinal football, Denver Broncos, San Francisco 49ers, New York Giants

    Edward Thomas McCaffrey (born August 17, 1968) is a former professional American football player who was a wide receiver in the National Football League (NFL) for thirteen seasons. McCaffrey played...  more

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    #51 of 214 The Best Wide Receivers of All Time#17 of 38 The Best NFL Wide Receivers of the '90s

  • 12
    879
    201

    Karl Mecklenburg

    Defensive end, Linebacker

    BirthplaceSeattle, Washington

    Age61

    Karl Bernard Mecklenburg (born September 1, 1960) is a former football linebacker for the Denver Broncos in the National Football League....  more
  • 13
    825
    207

    Randy Gradishar

    Linebacker

    BirthplaceWarren, Ohio

    Age69

    TeamsDenver Broncos

    Randy Charles Gradishar (born March 3, 1952) is a retired American football linebacker who played in the 1970s and 1980s. A native of Ohio, Gradishar was a two-time consensus All-American for the...  more

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    #38 of 83 The Best Ohio State Buckeyes of All Time#2 of 60 The Best Denver Broncos Linebackers of All Time

  • 14
    612
    153

    Tom Nalen

    Offensive Lineman, Center

    BirthplaceFoxborough, Massachusetts

    Age50

    TeamsDenver Broncos

    Thomas Andrew Nalen (born May 13, 1971) is a former American football center who played for the Denver Broncos of the National Football League (NFL). He was born in Boston and raised in Foxborough,...  more
  • 15
    685
    175

    John Lynch

    Safety

    BirthplaceHinsdale, Illinois

    Age44

    TeamsStanford Cardinal football, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Denver Broncos

    John Terrence Lynch Jr. (born September 25, 1971) is a former American football strong safety and the current general manager of the San Francisco 49ers of the National Football League (NFL). He...  more

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    #8 of 49 The Best Stanford Football Players of All Time#2 of 77 The Best Tampa Bay Buccaneers of All Time

  • 16
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    Craig Morton

    Quarterback

    BirthplaceFlint, Michigan

    Age78

    TeamsDallas Cowboys, New York Giants,a Denver Broncos

    Larry Craig Morton (born February 5, 1943) is a former American football quarterback in the National Football League (NFL) for the Dallas Cowboys, New York Giants, and Denver Broncos. He played...  more

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    #12 of 39 The Best NFL Quarterbacks of the 1970s#9 of 73 The Best Quarterbacks to Never Win a Super Bowl

  • 17
    514
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    Haven Moses

    Wide receiver

    BirthplaceLos Angeles, California

    Age75

    Haven Christopher Moses (born July 27, 1946) is a former professional American football player. He played professionally for fourteen seasons as a wide receiver in the American Football League (AFL)...  more
  • 18
    680
    207

    Jason Elam

    Placekicker

    BirthplaceFort Walton Beach, Florida

    Age51

    TeamsDenver Broncos, Atlanta Falcons

    Jason Elam (born March 8, 1970) is a former American football placekicker. He was drafted by the Denver Broncos in the third round of the 1993 NFL Draft and played 15 seasons with the Broncos and two...  more

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    #12 of 85 The Greatest NFL Kickers of All Time#153 of 176 The Best Atlanta Falcons of All Time

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    470
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    Lionel Taylor

    Wide receiver

    BirthplaceKansas City, Missouri

    Age86

    Lionel Thomas Taylor (born August 15, 1935) is a former American football wide receiver who led the American Football League (AFL) in receptions for five of the first six years of the league's...  more
  • 20
    630
    201

    Tom Jackson

    Linebacker

    BirthplaceCleveland, Ohio

    Age70

    Thomas Louie Jackson, also referred to as "TJ" or "Tommy", (born April 4, 1951) is a former NFL linebacker for the Denver Broncos, where he was part of the "Orange Crush Defense". Jackson was a major...  more

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    #47 of 154 The Greatest Linebackers of All Time#4 of 67 The Best Sports Personalities on ESPN

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    392
    77

    Rich Jackson

    Defensive end

    BirthplaceNew Orleans, Louisiana

    Age80

    Richard Samuel Jackson (born July 22, 1941) is a former American football player. He played college football for Southern University. Jackson played for the American Football League's Oakland Raiders...  more
  • 22
    692
    206

    Chris Harris

    Strong Safety, Safety

    BirthplaceLittle Rock, Arkansas

    Age39

    TeamsJacksonville Jaguars, Chicago Bears, Carolina Panthers, Detroit Lions

    Chris Harris may refer to: Chris Harris (actor) (1942–2014), English performer and writer specialising in pantomime and comic acting Chris Harris (author) (born 1964), English business author Chris...  more
  • 23
    543
    154

    BirthplaceAnchorage, Alaska, United States of America

    Age55

    TeamsIdaho Vandals football, Washington Redskins, Denver Broncos

    Mark Frederick Schlereth (; born January 25, 1966) is a former professional American football player and current television and radio sportscaster. Schlereth played guard in the NFL for 12 seasons...  more

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    #44 of 110 The Greatest Washington Redskins of All Time#70 of 80 Celebrities with Learning Disabilities

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    475
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    Rick Upchurch

    Return specialist, Wide receiver

    BirthplaceToledo, Ohio

    Age69

    Ricky "Rick" Upchurch (born May 20, 1952) is a former professional American football player who played wide receiver for the Denver Broncos (1975–1983) of the National Football League (NFL). Before...  more
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    602
    200

    Dennis Smith

    Safety

    BirthplaceSanta Monica, California

    Age62

    Dennis Smith (born February 3, 1959) is a retired American football player. He played professionally as a safety in the National Football League (NFL) for the Denver Broncos from 1981 until 1994. ...  more