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The 1977 Denver Broncos season was the team's 18th year in professional football and its eighth with the National Football League (NFL).

1977 Denver Broncos season
Head coachRed Miller
General managerFred Gehrke
Home fieldMile High Stadium
Results
Record12–2
Division place1st AFC West
Playoff finishWon AFC Divisional Playoff (Steelers) 34–21
Won AFC Championship Game (Raiders) 20–17
Lost Super Bowl XII (vs. Cowboys) 10–27

The team had by far its best season to date, finishing first in the AFC West and making the playoffs for the first time in franchise history. The Broncos won the first two playoff games in franchise history (over perennial AFC powerhouses Pittsburgh and Oakland) and won their first AFC Championship, earning a berth in Super Bowl XII, where they fell to the NFC champion Dallas Cowboys, 27–10.

Still, 1977 was a major leap for the Broncos, who had never won more than nine games in a season. Coach Red Miller — in his first season as the Broncos' head coach — was named NFL Coach of the Year, and quarterback Craig Morton was named NFL Comeback Player of the Year. The Denver defense was known as the Orange Crush, which delighted the makers of the soft drink, based in Illinois.[1]

Denver's 1977 season is chronicled in Terry Frei's 2008 book, '77: Denver, the Broncos and a Coming of Age.

PersonnelEdit

StaffEdit

1977 Denver Broncos staff
Front office

Head coaches

Offensive coaches

Defensive coaches

Special teams coaches


NFL DraftEdit

1977 Denver Broncos draft
Round Pick Player Position College Notes
1 18 Steve Schindler  G Boston College
2 45 Rob Lytle  RB Michigan
4 101 Billy Bryan  C Duke
7 185 Larry Swider  P Pittsburgh
8 212 Calvin Culliver  RB Alabama
9 241 Charles Jackson  DT Washington
10 268 Oren Middlebrook  WR Arkansas State
11 297 Phil Heck  LB California
12 324 Scott Levenhagen  TE Western Illinois
      Made roster    †   Pro Football Hall of Fame    *   Made at least one Pro Bowl during career

RosterEdit

1977 Denver Broncos roster
Quarterbacks

Running backs

Wide receivers

Tight ends

Offensive linemen

Defensive linemen

Linebackers

Defensive backs

Special teams

Reserve lists


Practice squad



Rookies in italics

ScheduleEdit

Week Date Opponent Result Game site Record Attendance
1 September 18 St. Louis Cardinals W 7–0 Mile High Stadium 1–0
75,002
2 September 25 Buffalo Bills W 26–6 Mile High Stadium 2–0
74,897
3 October 2 at Seattle Seahawks W 24–13 Kingdome 3–0
53,108
4 October 9 Kansas City Chiefs W 23–7 Mile High Stadium 4–0
74,878
5 October 16 at Oakland Raiders W 30–7 Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum 5–0
53,616
6 October 23 at Cincinnati Bengals W 24–13 Riverfront Stadium 6–0
54,395
7 October 30 Oakland Raiders L 14–24 Mile High Stadium 6–1
75,007
8 November 6 Pittsburgh Steelers W 21–7 Mile High Stadium 7–1
74,967
9 November 13 at San Diego Chargers W 17–14 San Diego Stadium 8–1
45,211
10 November 20 at Kansas City Chiefs W 14–7 Arrowhead Stadium 9–1
54,050
11 November 27 Baltimore Colts W 27–13 Mile High Stadium 10–1
74,939
12 December 4 at Houston Oilers W 24–14 Astrodome 11–1
46,875
13 December 11 San Diego Chargers W 17–9 Mile High Stadium 12–1
74,905
14 December 18 at Dallas Cowboys L 6–14 Texas Stadium 12–2
63,752

Season summaryEdit

Week 1Edit

1 234Total
Cardinals 0 000 0
• Broncos 0 070 7

[2]

Week 2Edit

1 234Total
Bills 0 600 6
• Broncos 3 7133 26

[3]

Week 3Edit

1 234Total
• Broncos 10 0140 24
Seahawks 7 060 13
  • Date: October 2
  • Location: Kingdome
  • Game weather: Indoors (dome)

Week 4Edit

1 234Total
Chiefs 0 007 7
• Broncos 10 670 23
  • Date: October 9
  • Location: Mile High Stadium

Week 5Edit

1 234Total
• Broncos 7 1463 30
Raiders 7 000 7

Week 6Edit

1 234Total
• Broncos 7 1007 24
Bengals 7 303 13

Week 7Edit

1 234Total
• Raiders 7 1070 24
Broncos 0 0014 14
  • Date: October 30
  • Location: Mile High Stadium

Week 8Edit

1 234Total
Steelers 0 007 7
• Broncos 14 700 21
  • Date: November 6
  • Location: Mile High Stadium

Week 9Edit

1 234Total
• Broncos 3 077 17
Chargers 7 700 14

Week 10Edit

1 234Total
• Broncos 0 707 14
Chiefs 0 700 7

Week 11Edit

1 234Total
Colts 0 3100 13
• Broncos 7 7013 27
  • Date: November 27
  • Location: Mile High Stadium

Week 12Edit

1 234Total
• Broncos 0 1437 24
Oilers 0 770 14
  • Date: December 4
  • Location: Houston Astrodome
  • Game start: 1:00 p.m. EST
  • Game attendance: 46,875
  • Game weather: Indoors (dome)

[4]

Week 13Edit

1 234Total
Chargers 3 330 9
• Broncos 7 0010 17
  • Date: December 11
  • Location: Mile High Stadium

Week 14Edit

1 234Total
Broncos 0 033 6
• Cowboys 7 070 14

[5]

StandingsEdit

AFC West
W L T PCT DIV CONF PF PA STK
Denver Broncos(1) 12 2 0 .857 6–1 11–1 274 148 L1
Oakland Raiders(4) 11 3 0 .786 5–2 10–2 351 230 W2
San Diego Chargers 7 7 0 .500 3–4 6–6 222 205 L2
Seattle Seahawks 5 9 0 .357 1–3 4–9 282 373 W2
Kansas City Chiefs 2 12 0 .143 1–6 1–11 225 349 L6

PlayoffsEdit

Round Date Opponent Result Game site Attendance
Divisional Playoffs December 24 Pittsburgh Steelers W 34–21 Mile High Stadium
75,011
AFC Championship January 1 Oakland Raiders W 20–17 Mile High Stadium
74,982
Super Bowl XII January 15 Dallas Cowboys L 10–27 Louisiana Superdome
76,400

DivisionalEdit

1 234Total
Steelers 0 1407 21
• Broncos 7 7713 34

Conference ChampionshipEdit

1 234Total
Raiders 3 0014 17
Broncos 7 076 20
  • Date: January 1
  • Location: Mile High Stadium • Denver, Colorado
  • Game start: 12:00 p.m. MST
  • Game attendance: 74,982
  • Game weather: 13°F • Wind 6
  • TV announcers (NBC): Dick Enberg and Len Dawson

[6]

 
The Broncos defeated the Raiders in the AFC Championship Game to earn their first trip to the Super Bowl.

Super BowlEdit

1 234Total
• Cowboys 10 377 27
Broncos 0 0100 10
  • Date: January 15
  • Location: Louisiana Superdome
  • Game attendance: 76,400
  • Game weather: Indoors (dome)
  • Referee: Jim Tunney
  • TV announcers (CBS): Pat Summerall and Tom Brookshier
 
The Broncos playing against the Cowboys in Super Bowl XII.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Broncos 'pay off' Crush". Spokesman-Review. (Spokane, Washington). January 15, 1978. p. D1.
  2. ^ Pro-Football-Reference.com
  3. ^ Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved 2014-Dec-25.
  4. ^ Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved 2015-Dec-10.
  5. ^ Box Score
  6. ^ Pro-Football-Reference.com

External linksEdit