Tanks, but no Tanks: I won’t root for the Broncos to lose

General view of Empower Field at Mile High before the game between the Denver Broncos against the Kansas City Chiefs. Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

“Suck for Luck.”

I remember the 2011 NFL season well. Fan bases around the football world were hoping for their team to finish with the worst record to allow that team to grab what most considered the most sure-fire No. 1 overall pick the NFL had seen in years.

Believe me. I get the appeal. Lose and lose and lose until you don’t have to lose any more. That’s the idea, right?

Well count me out. I cannot, and will not, ever root for my team to lose.

I’ve been kicked around a bit in my media career for being a homer. There are plenty of folks who have given me grief for wearing my team colors on my sleeve.

But I have always told people this: I am a fan first and a host second. That will never change.

As you might imagine, I could join some of our crew at Mile High Sports in the press box at the stadium if I wanted to. I don’t. I sit in my season tickets up in the 500 level. Because I want to cheer. I want to high five complete strangers. I want to cuss out the referees.

It’s who I am. (Thanks, Mom.)

Over the last several weeks I have watched fans, members of the media, and social media trolls with flexing Twitter muscles clamor for the Broncos to lose. They want the rest of the season to live in the L column, allowing Denver to have a higher draft pick in April.

I just can’t join that chorus.

And it is not just because I am a fan. It is because the draft is imperfect. Just as it is an imperfect science to judge a team’s performance in the draft.

As we think about the results of last five years of the NFL draft, it feels like we have had just as many “this guy can’t miss” players as we have “holy s**t, where did he come from?” moments. And, course, that’s assuming that the player has the right coaching staff to develop him and he stays off the injury report.

John Elway’s track record in the NFL Draft is not perfect. In some years, it’s not even remotely pretty. Sure, some of it is his fault. Some of it is just the nature of the Draft itself. It’s a crapshoot.

And guess what, Broncos Country, it’s a crapshoot whether you’re picking 1st, 15th, or 25th. It’s a guess—albeit an educated guess—even when you think the film tells you everything you need to know.

Denver must do better in the draft. There is no doubt about that. But you are on one of Colorado’s many legalized substances if you think the odds of that happening are going to go up just because the pick does.

The 2019 season for the Broncos can’t end soon enough for some of you. It’s been ugly. It’s been frustrating. I’ve yelled a lot of four-letter-bombs at my TV the last three months, too.

But I still want them to win.

I want to see Chris Harris Jr. snag an interception and run it back 75 yards. I want a Phillip Lindsay Mile High Salute. I want Derek Wolfe to howl standing over a crumpled Phillip Rivers. I want Courtland Sutton climbing the ladder in the back of the end zone for a touchdown.

Then…when the dust settles in the south stands around 5:45pm on Sunday December 29th…then I will worry about Denver’s draft position.

Until then, I’m going to cheer for my team.

I suggest you do the same.

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