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SBD/January 6, 2011/Franchises
Elway To Have Final Say On All Football Decisions For Broncos
Published January 6, 2011
Broncos Owner Pat Bowlen yesterday introduced Pro Football HOFer John Elway as the team's new Exec VP/Football Operations, saying Elway "will return this team to a very high level of competitiveness," according to Mike Klis of the DENVER POST. Elway's post is "no figurehead position," and he is "not filling a de facto executive role that requires little more than filling out foursomes with sponsors." He will have "final say on all football decisions," including being the "loudest voice on the new head coach hire." Elway: "Obviously, Mr. Bowlen has given me the power to overrule anybody. But if I ever were to do that, it would only be in the sense that it has to be the best thing for the Denver Broncos" (DENVER POST, 1/6). In Denver, Dave Krieger writes Elway "wowed a roomful of generally skeptical media wretches Wednesday with passion, candor and humility." Krieger: "By the time it was over, the fan base was back on board after the most dispiriting Broncos season in memory, which, let's face it, had to be part of the organization's calculation" (DENVER POST, 1/6).
MAKING MOVES: The DENVER POST's Klis & Legwold reported the Broncos have promoted COO Joe Ellis to President. Bowlen will remain CEO, but he "hands off his President title to Ellis," who now is "officially running the team on a day-to-day basis." Elway "reports to Ellis." The Broncos also retained Brian Xanders as GM (DENVER POST, 1/6). In Denver, Woody Paige notes Bowlen "will assume an even lower profile than he's maintained since the hiring" of former coach Josh McDaniels in January '09. Bowlen's "reputation in Denver and around the league has taken a major hit; it was wondered if he had control of the Broncos any longer, and there were cries for the owner to sell the team." But with the addition of Elway, Bowlen is "feisty, sanguine and competitive again" (DENVER POST, 1/6).