The Denver Broncos can boast of all the following distinctions: 1) They were the first AFL team to defeat an NFL team, besting the Detroit Lions 13-7 on August 5, 1967. 2) They had the first african-american place-kicker in pro football history, Gene Mingo, who also played halfback and kick-returner. 3) They were the first professional football team to wear vertically-striped socks.
Incredibly, the Denver Broncos drafted RB Terrell Davis in the 6th round (196th overall pick) of the 1995 NFL draft. Davis turned out to be a real steal, posting four consecutive 1,000 yard seasons (three of them over 1,500 yards!), earning several MVP awards, and leading the Broncos to two Super Bowl victories (1997 & 1998) before suffering a knee injury which would ultimately end his career.
In 2000, Brian Griese became the first Denver Bronco to finish a season (minimum of 200 passes) with a passer rating higher than 100. He completed 216 of 336 passes that year for 2,688 yards, 19 touchdowns, and only 4 interceptions. His passer rating for the season was an impressive 102.9.
John Elway was originally drafted by the Baltimore Colts with the 1st overall pick of the 1983 NFL draft. Unfortunately for the Colts, Elway threatened to give up football and pursue a professional baseball career if they didn't trade him to a select list of teams. Realizing this was no idle threat (Elway had already spent two summers playing in the New York Yankees minor league system), the Colts traded him to the Denver Broncos for QB Mark Herrmann, OL Chris Hinton, and a first-round pick in the 1984 draft. Elway would go on to have a stellar career with the Broncos, leading the team to five Super Bowls and back-to-back Super Bowl victories in 1997 and 1998. He ended his career in a blaze of glory, earning MVP honors in Super Bowl XXXIII, and in 2004, his first year of eligibility, he was inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame.
On March 3, 2004, the Denver Broncos completed a blockbuster trade with the Washington Redskins, sending Pro Bowl running back Clinton Portis to Washington for Pro Bowl cornerback Champ Bailey and a second-round draft pick. In his first season with the Broncos, Bailey had 81 tackles (68 solo), 9 passes defensed, and 3 interceptions.