“Cause I’m leaving on a jet plane, don’t know when I’ll be back again.”
John Denver’s words rang in my head throughout the day Friday and you can bet a handful of players at Dove Valley were feeling the same way. Yesterday marked the final cut-down day in the NFL. John Elway and Co. had to trim the Broncos’ roster down to 53 players, leaving the careers of 19 men hanging in limbo.
Although, the symbolism of the 1966 classic extended beyond the players being handed pink slips. Yesterday, I was reminded once again of this city’s love affair with the Denver Broncos as I hummed Denver’s famous lyrics.
“Every place I go, I’ll think of you. Every song I sing, I’ll sing for you.”
Denver loves the Broncos above all else. There isn’t room in the heart of this city for another team. This is a one-woman city and that woman is the Denver Broncos.
On the day before the Rocky Mountain Showdown – a game being sold as the biggest of the year for the respective participants – this entire town was only interested in roster moves that don’t matter.
Let’s get one thing straight. Worrying about the 53rd man on the Broncos roster is pointless. It doesn’t matter who holds the clipboard for Peyton Manning. If Caleb Hanie or Brock Osweiler gets any playing time, this team is headed for a top-five draft pick.
Tony Carter is irrelevant; his presence will have zero impact on the 2012 season. Therein lays the beauty of the situation. The Mile High City is so head-over-heels for the Denver Broncos that they can’t imagine giving their attention to any other team.
This is a one-woman city. Every other team in this state is just a distraction.
Take the Colorado Rockies. The Rockies are the girl that lives downtown and is really fun to hang out with in the summer. She is sexy in April in her cutoff shorts, but come September as the temperature drops, she disappears because she hates the cold. Everyone then remembers that seven months out of the year she doesn’t matter.
This is much the same for the Rocky Mountain Showdown, Colorado’s fall distraction. Every year, Denver thinks this girl would be a great way to kick off the fall season. And who wouldn’t? This is a date 60,000 people attended last year.
But after a day of tailgating and heavy drinking, everyone wakes up with a headache and remembers why they have zero interest the rest of the year; she is boring – all hype and no substance.
The Denver Nuggets are fun to hang out with, but their friends – the Nuggets Dancers – are far more fun (and unfortunately taken).
The Rapids were a blind date set up by a relative; it became apparent quickly there was nothing in common. Good thing Commerce City got stuck with the bill.
A date with the Colorado Avalanche is like taking your co-worker out, always a brutal mistake.
And Denver has avoided the Outlaws because leather jackets aren’t cool.
It isn’t as if these other teams have done something wrong. The only thing they are guilty of is trying to exist in a one-woman city. This city doesn’t cheat on its Broncos. It sticks by them through thick and thin. There is no denying this town bleeds orange and blue as Broncos Country has eyes for only one lady.
Yesterday, instead of a city consumed by a matchup of the state’s two marquee college football programs, sports fans spent the day debating the merits of Hanie’s place on the Broncos’ roster, as well as other players who will make little to no contribution on the field in 2012.
Sports fans in this town can name all 53 men on the Broncos’ roster and feel invested in their welfare. Yesterday proved the same cannot be said for any other sports team on the Front Range.
As Elway finalized a team to represent this city, Broncos Country waited with bated breath to learn the fate of the men they identify with. During that time, nothing else mattered.
Denver has its summer drinking buddy, suffered through a blind date and made the mistake of taking out a co-worker; the opportunities to stray have always been there, but this is a one-woman city (unless those Nuggets Dancers hit the market).