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John Elway

From Academic Kids

Missing image
SIElway1996.jpg
John Elway, 1996
Position: Quarterback
College: Stanford
NFL draft: 1983, 1st round,
1st overall,
Baltimore Colts
Pro career: 16 seasons
Hall of Fame: Pro Football
Broncos

John Albert Elway (born June 28, 1960) was an American football quarterback in the National Football League for the Denver Broncos from 1983 through 1998.

Contents

Biography

Elway was born in Port Angeles, Washington. He attended Granada Hills High School in Granada Hills, California, and then Stanford University, where he was a baseball player and quarterback. His last football game at Stanford was one of the most famous games of all time, the 1982 Big Game versus Cal, which ended with "The Play", an amazing play with five laterals that allowed Cal to win the game. By the end of his senior year, Elway had set nearly every Pac-10 and Stanford career record for total offense and passing. He was a consensus All-American and finished second in Heisman Trophy balloting. He graduated with a degree in economics.

In the 1983 draft, Elway was selected as the 1st overall pick by the Baltimore Colts, but he threatened to quit football and play professional baseball if he was not traded (he had by then played two summers in the New York Yankees organization). The Colts traded him to the Denver Broncos for two veterans and a first-round pick in the 1984 draft. In his fifth season, Elway was named league MVP. He finally won a Super Bowl in the 1997 season after three previously failed attempts, behind the overwhelming running game of Terrell Davis. In 1998, the Broncos repeated this feat and Elway was awarded the MVP of Super Bowl XXXIII; it was his last game.

On May 2, 1999, at the age of 38, Elway announced his retirement from pro football. Elway is regarded as one of the top quarterbacks ever to play the game. Not only does he have more wins than any other quarterback in NFL history, but he has the best winning percentage in league history (148-82-1), and is tied for most Pro Bowl selections for a quarterback (nine). He is second to Dan Marino in career passing yards, attempts, and completions. He is the first quarterback to have started in five Super Bowls.

Elway also holds the record for most game-winning or game-tying scoring drives in the fourth quarter, with 47. Surprisingly often, if Elway had the ball late in the fourth quarter and the Broncos were within a touchdown, he would lead them to tie or win the game. Elway had many comeback opportunities because for most of his career, the Broncos were a good, but not dominant, team. Part of the reason that Denver was not a dominant team can be attributed to Dan Reeves, who coached Elway for the majority of his career. Reeves had a conservative "run-first" approach, and did not have an intimidating running back to power the offense. This often left the Broncos in situations where they were behind in the fourth quarter. Elway holds the record for most times being sacked (516).

He and his ex-wife Janet have four children: daughters Jessica, Jordan, Juliana, and a son, Jack. Jessica is currently a basketball player for Stanford's women's team.

His number 7 jersey was retired by the Denver Broncos in 1999, the same year he was inducted into the Denver Broncos Ring of Fame. He was the first player to have the five-year waiting period waived. In 2004, Elway was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He is the only player to be inducted into the Hall of Fame as a Bronco.

Missing image
Uso-show-john-elway-defenselink-mil.jpg
Former American football player John Elway speaking to United States troops while preparing to throw a football.

Career highlights

  • In 1979, Elway was drafted out of high school by the Kansas City Royals to play baseball.
  • In the 1981 summer draft, he was the first selection of the New York Yankees. The following year he hit .314 and a club-high 24 runs while playing for the Oneonta, New York single-A farm club.
  • In the 1983 NFL draft, he was selected as the 1st overall pick by the Baltimore Colts and on May 2 was traded to the Denver Broncos.
  • In 1987, he was named the NFL Most Valuable Player and the AFC Offensive MVP.
  • In 1991, he became the only quarterback to pass for over 3,000 yards and rush for over 200 yards in the same season for seven consecutive seasons.
  • He was named the AFC Offensive MVP in 1993 when he passed for over 4,000 yards and 25 touchdowns.
  • In 1997, he led the Broncos to their first ever Super Bowl win in Super Bowl XXXII. His three previous attempts in Super Bowls XXI, XXII, and XXIV were unsuccessful.
  • On January 31, 1999, in Super Bowl XXXIII he passed for 336 yards in a 34-19 victory over the Atlanta Falcons. Elway was named the Super Bowl MVP.
  • He was selected to the Pro Bowl nine times during his 16 seasons with the Broncos.
  • Over his professional career, he led his teams to a record 47 fourth quarter comebacks.
  • He led the NFL all-time list with 148 wins as a starting quarterback. He was also sacked 516 times, more than any other quarterback.
  • At retirement, Elway's 300 career touchdown passes placed him third behind Dan Marino and Fran Tarkenton.
  • He was only the second quarterback to pass for at least 3,000 yards in 12 seasons.
  • On January 31, 2004, he was elected into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
  • On August 8, 2004, he was inducted to the Hall of Fame along with Bob Brown, Carl Eller, and Barry Sanders.
  • Elway's economics degree from Stanford has also benefited him. He owns a successful network of car dealerships in the Denver area, and is also the owner of the Colorado Crush of the Arena Football League.

Career statistics

Regular season

¹Led league ²Second place ³Third place Tied
Year Passing Rushing
Att Comp Yds TD Int Att Yds Avg TD
1983 259 123 1,663 7 14 28 146 5.2 1
1984 380 214 2,598 18 15 56 237 4.2 1
1985 605¹ 327² 3,891² 22 23 51 253 5.0 0
1986 504 280 3,485 19 13 52 257 4.9 1
1987 410 224 3,198 19 12 66 304 4.6 4
1988 496 274 3,309 17 19 54 234 4.3 1
1989 416 223 3,051 18 18 48 244 5.1 3
1990 502 294 3,526 15 14 50 258 5.2 3
1991 451 242 3,253 13 12 55 255 4.6 6
1992 316 174 2,242 10 17 34 94 2.8 2
1993 551¹ 348¹ 4,030¹ 25² 10 44 153 3.5 0
1994 494 307 3,490 16 10 58 235 4.1 4
1995 542 316 3,970 26 14 41 176 4.3 1
1996 466 287 3,328 26 14 50 249 5.0 4
1997 502 280 3,635 27 11 50 218 4.4 1
1998 356 210 2,806 22 10 37 94 2.5 1
Total
(all-time)
7,250
(2nd)
4,123
(2nd)
51,475
(2nd)
300
(4th)
226 774 3,407 4.4 33

Playoffs

*includes Super Bowl
Year Passing Rushing
Att Comp Yds TD Int Att Yds Avg TD
1983 15 10 123 0 1 3 16 0.0 0
1984 37 19 184 2 2 4 16 0.0 0
1986* 107 57 805 3 4 15 101 0.0 2
1987* 89 42 797 6 5 18 76 0.0 1
1989* 82 42 732 4 3 16 91 0.0 1
1991 54 30 378 1 2 10 49 0.0 0
1993 47 29 302 3 1 5 23 0.0 0
1996 38 25 226 2 0 5 30 0.0 0
1997* 96 56 726 3 2 9 25 0.0 1
1998* 86 45 691 3 1 9 34 0.0 1
Total 651 355 4,964 27 21 94 461 0.0 6

Reference

  • The Associated Press, "Clock runs out on Elway", Arizona Daily Wildcat, May 3, 1999.[1] (http://wildcat.arizona.edu/papers/92/147/16_1_m.html)
  • Ivan Carter, "KC helped make Elway a star", The Kansas City Star, August 8, 2004, p. C8.

External links

  • Pro Football Hall of Fame: John Elway biography (http://www.profootballhof.com/hof/member.jsp?PLAYER_ID=64)
  • DenverBroncos.com (official team site): Elway Tribute (http://www.denverbroncos.com/page.php?id=1055)
  • NFL.com: Elway profile (http://www.nfl.com/qbclub/elway.html)
  • SI/CNN: John Elway statistics (http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/football/nfl/players/195/)
  • Pro-Football-Reference.com: John Elway statistics (http://www.pro-football-reference.com/players/ElwaJo00.htm)
  • ESPN SportscenturyBio (http://espn.go.com/classic/biography/s/Elway_John.html)
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