An Open Letter to John Elway

Dear John Elway,

As we march toward the end of what has been a most trying season, I hope you are in good health these days c, especially considering you are probably not in good spirits. I know it must be hard to watch your team lose week after week, often in embarrassing fashion. It sure has been for me and the rest of Broncos Country. And while I’m confident that you are already thinking of all the ways that you can clean up this mess in the offseason, I thought I’d take the time this morning to offer you some advice.

This is not so much about specific moves or changes. I already covered things that I’d like to see happen last week, and I’m not going to spend time regurgitating those here. No, this is more about an important component that lies at the heart of leading any successful team or organization, particularly one that experiences any sort of regression.

Self-reflection.

We both know that this is something that you are quite familiar with, because you’ve exercised it to perfection during your career on the field and in the front office. Whether it’s leaning on Terrell Davis to help you win your first Super Bowl or building an elite defense after the disaster that was Super Bowl 48, you’ve proven that you are willing to adjust in order to do what’s best for the Broncos. We’ve reached a point where it’s time for you to do that again.

Back when you were first introduced as the new President of Football Operations, you emphasized that, “I know what I don’t know,” meaning you were going to accept the help of those who had more experience than you did with personnel. Maybe it was also how you would listen to everyone’s opinion, even if it wasn’t your own. Flash forward almost seven years and there’s no denying that the Broncos have experienced one of their greatest periods of success under your watch. It’s also past time to admit that the well has run dry, and that many of your recent acquisitions and decisions haven’t panned out. You aren’t the first front office executive to go through this and you most certainly will not be the last.

However, just like you did when Pat Bowlen turned to you to rebuild his franchise, it’s time to reassess what you don’t know. It’s time for some more self-reflection.

That can include a lot of different things, whether it’s bringing in a new voice and fresh set of eyes to evaluate talent, or admitting that a coach you coveted for years isn’t as good as you thought he’d be. Again, not gonna delve too much into specifics, but I have a feeling that all options are on the table for you. Not just because you hate losing more than you love winning, but also because you have a great deal of admiration and respect for Mr. Bowlen, and you know that the results of this season are well below the expectations that he had for his organization.

I believe that you will turn this thing around, because you’ve always come through for the Broncos when they’ve needed you the most, but I think we both know that you’re going to need some help to do that. There’s nothing wrong with that. Sometimes counting on someone else to share the load can lead to a wonderful outcome, just like when TD helped you finally get over that Super Bowl hump.

Things are looking pretty grim this year. You may as well be on the two-yard line in terms of how much work needs to be done to restore our beloved Broncos to their former glory. The good news is that in the NFL, turnarounds can happen very quickly, so to quote one of your old teammates…

“You’ve got ’em right where you want ’em.”

Sincerely,

Pegboards

Next week’s prediction: Jets 24, Broncos 10

But, for right now, the Broncos are still terrible. They couldn’t even beat the shitty New York team that benched their franchise quarterback for Geno Smith, then fired the coach and GM that made that decision. What makes you think they’ll beat the one that at the moment is slightly less dysfunctional?

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