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Published on 06/01/2012 at Fri Jun 01 12:00.
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Al Bello/Getty Images

Any Denver Broncos fan over the age twelve in 1997 would tell you, the victory in Super Bowl XXXII was the greatest sports moment they had ever experienced before or since. Super Bowls are typically filled with big time plays and this one was no different.  The Broncos were 14 point underdogs to the defending champion Green Bay Packers and played out the role in true Hollywood fashion – and John Mobley would ultimately be the hero that saved the day.

Situation: Super Bowl XXXII.  4th down a 6 with victory on the line for 4 time Super Bowl losing franchise Denver Broncos.

The Play: Regular season NFL MVP, Brett Favre, takes a shot for the first down that was thrown a little behind the tight end, enabling John Mobley to knock the pass down and Broncos fans everywhere into euphoria.

It is hard to describe the emotions many of us old timers felt at that moment, but there will be little argument from us about the fact that no single moment in Broncos history ever matched it and I doubt any ever will. John Elway summed it up best when he said (and I am paraphrasing a bit), “The Broncos will win more after this one, but they’ll never compare to this first one.”  

I agree wholeheartedly having grown up in Northern California and suffering through all of the catcalls at school from 49ers and Raiders fans about the hapless Broncos losing Super Bowl after Super Bowl. The vindication and jubilation were oddly mixed into a single tear-filled emotional breakdown – for me anyway. The irony for me is that I never really caught all of the calls and commentary immediately after the game because I was screaming and hollering for so long, but thanks to NFL Films, I’ve gotten to relive this moment time and again.  And it never gets old.

The greatest defensive play in Denver Broncos history occurs at the 8 minute mark in the video below, but feel free to watch it in its entirety as the earlier parts of the video is a perfect backdrop that shows why this play will always be the greatest.

Go Broncos!

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  • FloydOtisTerrell


  • jdkchem

    Heroin is a drug, Heroine would be a female hero.

  • jdkchem

     The opiate of the masses!

  • FloydOtisTerrell

    I keep wanting Mobley to intercept that ball, even though I know it didn’t matter.  But yes, it never gets old.  I dreamt of that moment for decades–soo sweet that it finally happened!  

    Amazing the power:  I’m fifty, a husband, father, professional, but there is such a little boy in me rooting for Floyd Little and Lyle Alzado…  

    Oh, to go back again, for our Denver team to be champions again—man!  

  • fiercepika

    I have two beautiful daughters and a wonderful wife.  If I’m honest, this was still the single best day of my life, lol.

  • Tom9798

    Made me cry again . . . Thanks Tim . . . as a sidenote to the intensity of all the players . . . look around the 6:15 moment and right after when ‘Easy Ed’ McCaffrey blasts that CB and then points at him yelling . . . too sweet!

  • Monty

    LOL… well at least you’re honest!!

  • Matt Dierking

     That was actually LB Brian Williams that Eddie flattened.

  • Tom9798

    Thanks Matt . . . what with all the screaming and shouting, I knew there would be someone who actually knew who ‘Easy’ flattened.

  • Tim Lynch

    Ok, so I didn’t spell check well enough.  Jesus…  

  • Tim Lynch

    Total FAIL, yes I know.  At least I didn’t use birth instead of berth when talking about getting to the Super Bowl.  (did that once over at MHR)  

  • Acey916

    I still get shivers every time I remember this game. First superbowl the AFC one in 13 years, and it was OUR team that did it. When Elway made that sneak and helicopter landing I remember saying to my friends that Denver is going to win and everyone was like “YEAH RIGHT They cant be the Packers” But after that play I knew it, I knew they were going to win!!! Go Broncos!! Hopefully Peyton Manning can win us another one, or two…. Elway won back to back Super Bowls. Totally makes up for the 80’s Love the broncos!!!!!

  • Tim Lynch

    Sacramento in the house!

  • Mokptt

     Great moment in Bronco History

  • anthony33

    I still tear up watching that video.  I was at that game and cried like a baby after the pass was knocked down.