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Published on 04/07/2010 at Wed Apr 07 11:23.
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We all know that another key member of our Super Bowl dynasty retired last week. Jason Elam ended his 17 year career ranked sixth in NFL history with 1983 points scored. He jointly holds the record for the longest field goal (63 yards). He went to three Pro Bowls, and personally accounted for 26 career game-winning or game-saving field goals. He will go into the Ring of Fame, he might go into the Hall of Fame and he most certainly was the best damn kicker in Broncos history.

I’d like to add my personal fan-based ‘thank you’ to ole #1…

Jason, you deserve to be in the Hall of Fame and I truly hope you get there; however, I admire you most for your outstanding character and personal witness. You have been an unapologetic Christian athlete long before it was cool for College QB’s to reference their faith. More importantly, you never held your beliefs over anyone, but rather lived by example. Thank you for the memories and thank you for that example.

Good luck and may God bless your ongoing mission work!

*****

And now, I must express my thanks to someone else. Someone that made Elam’s retirement as a Bronco possible. Because, two years removed from his organization and with almost none of the same faces both on the field and in the front office, Pat Bowlen still went out of his way to honor his former kicker in a way most players (let alone kickers) get a chance to do.

I think it speaks volumes for Mr. Bowlen and the type of organization he’s labored to create at Dove Valley.

My hats off to you Mr. Bowlen for caring not just for your team and your city, but for caring for your players as human beings and friends. Your character in this time as well as countless other times has clearly singled you out as both a deeply passionate and compassionate man.

Denver is lucky to have you. You are, hands down, the best owner in sport. Period.

  • guest

    totally agree with this post.

    however if i can make one addition-
    -”Jason, you deserve to be in the Hall of Fame and I truly hope you get there; however,” – insert 'you are a bronco, so good luck with that'.

  • Nisse

    “You have been an unapologetic Christian athlete long before it was cool for College QB’s to reference their faith.”

    say what? since when is it cool?

    maybe its becouse i dont live in usa that I have missed this.

  • herc_rock

    He did the same for Steve Atwater, too…after running him out of town two years prior.

  • troyn

    Nisse, the reference was obviously to Tim Tebow who has gained great popularity while constantly expressing his faith. Not many athletes can do that as only a few like Elam and Tebow actually “walk the talk”. The really cool part is that in the USA anyone can express their faith openly without fear of persecution, unless you count the sneers of snarky atheists (Bill Maher-types) as persecution.

  • themastermind

    Not really, because the freedom to believe also encompasses the freedom not to. Everyone has their say, and nobody has to listen to anything they don't want to.

  • eyeh8f8

    I can respect the part where he lead by example part but as somebody whom is a non believer, I've met a lot of religious versions of what you think of as “Bill Maher types”. I see it this way, if you find Bill Maher to be disrespectful and don't like him, turn off the TV. I do the same when somebody tells me what to believe in and it is something I need to do. Sometimes I might try to listen and understand them but usually it's best just best to walk away. Most likely they aren't worth the debate as those whom are genuine don't force those things. It's apart of them and they don't need to tell you anything.

    My philosophy on life is that I don't know everything and I will never know everything. Live, learn and be the best you can be. That aint atheism or religion for me, that's just me.

    Jason Elam, properly wore number one, because there was no better kicker to play the game that I have seen.

  • hallmark1955

    Mastermind, I believe any true Christian would agree totally with what you said. This wonderful country is still one of the few places in the world where one can practice what they choose to, whether it is Wiccan, Buddhism, Muslim, or Christianity. An earlier blogger said that Jason “walked the walk” not just talked it, and being a serious Bronco fan, I watched Elam's career closely and as far as a long distance fan (south Florida) could tell, he did just that.

  • hallmark1955

    Unfortunately the Christian community seems to have more than it's share of “Bill Maher types”…….As one who is a believer , it grieves me that there are some ( people who call themselves Christians) who have killed doctors who performed abortions, and others who get on TV 24/7 begging for your last dollar while they fly around in private jets. I think the ones who are genuine will come across as being just that…genuine. Just like Jason.

  • eyeh8f8

    Yeah, definitely. I think it's because people take it too seriously and obsess over it. I've always seen the bible and many religious texts as more of art that has had good things to say. It seems a number of people use it like a sort of drug and it becomes less about loving your fellow man and more about how great it's going to effect you in the end and you lose sight of reality which is way more black and white.

    My view on doing good in this world is that regardless if there is a god or a heaven or there isn't, you should just do it. There are many things in religion that I think are good. The golden rule being a great example of what(In just my opinion) this world needs and that is empathy.

    You don't last that long on a team and not be a leader on that team. You have to be able play well and be loyal to your team mates. One would think a kicker would be the last position for leadership but you have to be pretty unselfish in that position. As you rarely get the credit you deserve when you make it and all the blame in the world when you don't.

  • Nisse

    well, I just cant stand it, probobly why I hate tebow. why not just say that you worked really hard to get to where you are now, that all that time spent in the gym and on the field payed off, and becouse of that you deserve to play football.

    and becouse of popular players like tebow is doing it, almost all of the other draft prospects are talking about how they are blessed to get to play football and thank god for it.

    which leads to half the time spent watching interviews with them hasnt got anything to do with football.

    im not good enough at english or at discussing religion to argue with any one of you about religion, so ill stop here.

    but i think football players should stick to talking football, couse thats what we(most of us) are intrestied in hearing about.

    and just one more thing, in sweden, where i come from, we dont persecute religious people, but we dont think they are cool becouse of there religion eather.

  • hallmark1955

    Good stuff…….you are correct in saying some Christians get off track. There is a saying that goes like this; “Don't be so heavenly minded that you aren't any earthly good”. Goes hand in hand with what you said. The group of people we worship with like to feed the homeless and elderly, as well as take an active part in a Haitian orphanage…there are enough “suits” throwing their table top Bibles in your face telling you how you can “get more money by giving them money”……my thought has always been why don't they give me an offering and then they'll get the big reward? Never heard 'em say anything like that though!!!
    I never understood why they let Jason go anyway. Prater is good, and I'm glad we have him,but I don't see that he's better than Elam when he was let go. I've been a die hard Broncos fan for more than 35 years, and one of the happiest days of my life was when we won the first Super Bowl. Winning the second one against Coach Reeves was gratifying too. He never could get away from running on first and second (before T.D.) then hoping Elway could work a miracle and pick up the first down. Not sure about all the coaching changes either, whether head coach or letting Mike Nolan go after one season. I do like that they picked up Brady Quinn though….should be an interesting season. Living in South Florida presents huge problems for a Bronco fan, but someday my I'm bringing my son and grandson to a home game in the snow….Go Bronco's!

  • hallmark1955

    Nisse, I make it a point not to argue with people either…I know what I believe, and why, but arguing with someone never changed anything. I can listen respectfully to you, as long as the discussion is civil. Your English is pretty good, but I'm curious how long you've been following American football?? Are the Broncos your favorite team?

  • Nisse

    been following nfl for about 3 years seriusly, and of course the broncos are my favorit team :D
    im only 20 years old, so there hasnt been any oppertuneties to watch football live before, becouse most of the games are played in the middle of the night here.

  • hallmark1955

    I am 55, expecting our first grandson next month. We have already bought him a couple of Bronco outfits, so he's set for clothes!! When I was a kid, some of the worlds best moto-x riders came from Sweden, and they were my heros! Well it was great chatting with you, but I'm closing for tonight…..I have an almost new Bronco hat, if you're interested let me know how to get it to you. Probably don't see a lot of them where you are. Talk to you later

  • Nisse

    you see alot more nfl wear than you would belive, people just dont realise its nfl clothes they are wearing.
    pretty distrurbing seeing people wear raider caps just becouse they look “cool”.
    about the cap, it would probobly cost more to ship it from USA than to buy a new one from UK online, but thanks anyway.

  • hallmark1955

    Ok…goodnight from Fort Lauderdale Florida. More later

  • http://www.robertclarkmtfs.com/ Robert Clark MTFS

    Well Jonathan, out of two posts you have managed to stir up heavy feelings towards Brandon Marshall and a Theology debate. You know what they say (and by “they” I mean “me”) good writers report the news but great writers spark an emotion.

    Well done

  • troyn

    Just wanted to say good job to all that have posted on the theology discussion that emerged here. Everyone was civil and I saw a lot more agreement on basic core beliefs than disagreement. Can't see that happening on a raiders board no matter what the subject. On an unknown subject such as the reason for being, faith is required, whether you believe in a deity or not and arguing faith is pointless. Glad to see that didn't happen here, now if I can only find a QB to have faith in.

  • eyeh8f8

    Yeah, I tend to do my best to help out people when I can. Every time I see somebody on the streets, it's hard to see. Makes you want to do something. I guess I just recall those times when I've felt really alone and like nobody was there. Shoot, listen to these people for five minutes. I was born in an area that didn't have what I've seen since I've moved to California. My first room mates used in South Central in Los Angeles, and what they have seen is totally different from what somebody in Wyoming sees. You come out better listening to people from situations that you haven't even been in. Even if hearing what they say isn't easy.

    I think the major problem within each major religion is that it is an institution that is big and powerful. It makes it easy for people to be divisive over the matter. It's nothing new, people have been fighting and arguing over it for a long time. If people stopped thinking about what classification they are in terms of religious affiliation, or even not being affiliated at all, they'd realize that a lot of us agree and have a lot more in common than we think on the general idea of things.

    I think it was because Jason was getting up there and they felt it was time to give Prater his shot. I think he'll be here long term as well. I am not sure about a lot of things but I try to remain positive. A lot of people thought last season was going to be way worse. It was up and then down. I think the main improvement that will need to be shown is that they can last all year.

  • hallmark1955

    It has been a civil debate, and in my opinion, speaks volumes about the class and mindset of Bronco fans!!! As for Brandon Marshall, man what a talented guy……..I just wish he would maintain an attitude of maturity, and that being said, the Broncos org should pay him accordingly. He's a game changer and I hope he suits up as a Bronco in 2010. Not completely sold on McDaniels yet……….it is disappointing to me that Mike Nolan is gone after one season. Where has Brandon Stokley been????? This guy reminds me so much of Ed McCaffery, great hands and always able to make an opening for a catch. I can't wait to see what we'll get in the draft, and then hopefully a great season. In closing, I would like to see more of Branstater, and of course Quinn……no disrespect to to Orton though. He's done a good job and I just want to see the Broncos become a dominant team again.

  • Roy88

    Here is an off topic observation. The alility to move Marshall just got harder. Superbowl MVP Santanio Holmes was just traded for little more than a nickle and a song. He is now a J-E-T, by way of a fifth round pick. If that is all it takes to get a Holmes, we will be lucky to get a second for Marshall.

    http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2010/04/11