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John Elway: Playoffs are harder to watch than to play

Denver Broncos v Kansas City Chiefs Getty Images

The playoffs used to be a lot more fun for John Elway, when he had more control over the outcome of the games.

The two-time Super Bowl winner as a player might have more power over the entire football operation, but he said Thursday he doesn’t get to enjoy it as much as he used to.

It’s very different,” Elway said, via Mike Klis of the Denver Post. “It takes some getting used to. I enjoy watching the regular-season games, but I was absolutely miserable last week watching this game. It took me four hours to get the pit out of my stomach when it was over. It’s not nearly as much fun upstairs as it is down on the field, especially these championship games and the playoffs.

“But I’m also proud of being a part of it. Being able to help put the team together, put the coaches together and the personnel side, for everything to come together. There is more of a quiet pride than it is being a quarterback when everybody is patting you on the back.”

Though the Broncos are in the AFC Championship, it’s still been a trying year for the Broncos executive. From suspensions to star players to injuries, to the summer drunk driving arrests of the top two members of his personnel department — “both of those ruined my summer,” he said — the Broncos have had to overcome plenty.

That part of the job was something he didn’t necessarily anticipate.

“Uh, no,” Elway said. “No. But when you have problems,being a good leader is taking care of those and making sure everyone feels comfortable that when the house is on fire that we go ahead and take care of our business and realize there’s a solution to this and we’ll get through this. I’ve tried to be that rock on the front side, saying we’ll get it covered, we’ll get it handled.”

He inherited a team that went 4-12 the year before, but has molded them into a consistent winner, with three straight division titles. Luring Peyton Manning was another coup, but Elway’s success as an executive is approaching the success he had on the field.

Even if it isn’t as much fun.

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19 Responses to “John Elway: Playoffs are harder to watch than to play”
  1. The League's Crusade Against The Steelers Continues says: Jan 16, 2014 2:08 PM

    We win Super Bowls.

  2. daysend564 says: Jan 16, 2014 2:10 PM

    That’s because you know as well as everybody else that a Manning choke is eminent.

  3. nflofficeadmin says: Jan 16, 2014 2:12 PM

    Just try to make the best of it John..

  4. tacasey says: Jan 16, 2014 2:12 PM

    Get a bigger T.V. or glasses then it won’t be so hard to watch.

  5. 44mpo says: Jan 16, 2014 2:13 PM

    Really?
    Elway without Terrell Davis in Superbowls… 0 and 4
    With Davis….. 2 and 0
    You see a trend here?

  6. surfinbird1 says: Jan 16, 2014 2:18 PM

    Damn, the things you run into when you don’t have a bag of carrots on you. You better hope Peyton gets at least one more ring as a member of the Donks with all the dough you forked out.

  7. randyschwimmer7 says: Jan 16, 2014 2:29 PM

    Everyone that moans and groans that their team has had major injuries and this and that does not realize the extent of the injuries the Broncos have had. IR: Wolfe, Vickerson, Moore, VON, Koppen, Walton, Harris. Just to name a few. Then you have key injuries for a good chunk of the year to Bailey, Welker.

    Elway has done a hell of job getting this team put together. Him and Fox have done a downright amazing job with all things considered.

  8. forsbergler says: Jan 16, 2014 2:31 PM

    Ya I do see a trend, it takes more then the best QB of all time to win a SB. Unless your the 06 Colts that is.

  9. mataug says: Jan 16, 2014 2:38 PM

    Elway picks who have somewhat contributed to the Broncos success (in his first 2 years with the team):
    Von Miller, Rahim Moore, Orlando Franklin, Derek Wolfe, Danny Trevathan (and Nate Irving in 2013)

    However in this year’s class, I think only Montee Ball and Kayvon Webster have contributed to the team.

    So to be honest, I am not really convinced by his job with personnel /roster so far.

  10. scoobies05 says: Jan 16, 2014 2:38 PM

    only 2 in 34 years hardly impressive

  11. mrwalterisgod says: Jan 16, 2014 2:45 PM

    He’s really overrated as an executive. Peyton Manning DECIDED to come Denver, Elway didn’t decide that.

    Still irritates me that Elway and Grigson finished above John Schneider in Executive of the Year voting. Schneider found boatloads of talent late in the draft, Grigson walked into Andrew Luck and Elway got an excuse to can Tim Tebow when Peyton decided on Denver.

  12. hairpie2 says: Jan 16, 2014 2:51 PM

    The 2 they did win, they were caught cheating the salary cap and playing with an illegal roster. they were find and lost a draft pick. Both times!

  13. JP says: Jan 16, 2014 3:06 PM

    I don’t know why SF and Seattle have such inferiority complexes. I think their GMs do a fantastic job – and I don’t need to belittle them to praise John Elway… But they always want to detract from the job Elway has done.

    It goes way beyond getting Peyton Manning – even though I think you could argue that landing Manning alone is a pretty impressive feat.

    His free agent acquisitions have been extremely solid (Vasquez, DRC, Welker, Knighton to name a few) – his coaching staff is the best in the league two years running. He really has rebuilt this team, along with Manning, into a top notch contender.

  14. elwaysagenius says: Jan 16, 2014 3:07 PM

    I believe the greatest QB and greatest executive ever when he says something, so I believe this fully.

    Go Vroncos!

  15. therooneyskilledwebster says: Jan 16, 2014 3:08 PM

    Manning’s rating in the Colts SB victory was a very mediocre 81.8. He also threw only 3 TDs while throwing 7 INTs during their playoff run. He only won the SB MVP because everyone felt bad for him. Rhodes and Addai should’ve been co-MVPs.

  16. proteus914 says: Jan 16, 2014 3:11 PM

    Yeah, really overrated…took a 4-12 team and won the division the next 3 years. Probably just dumb luck, since that happens so often in the NFL.
    Elway would have canned Tebow whether or not Peyton came to Denver. A blind man could see that he wasn’t an NFL quarterback. Also, Elway had a huge part in Peyton coming to Denver.
    All you haters just keep spewing the most inane garbage…you might not like him but he’s done an outstanding job.

  17. angelochung says: Jan 16, 2014 4:15 PM

    a lot of people jealous of john elway and peyton manning on here. how unfortunate because they will continue to be the classes of the nfl.

  18. itsunclepauley says: Jan 16, 2014 4:52 PM

    translation: I’m jealous of all the attention Peyton is getting right now, I remember when that used to be me, and I would like some more of the credit please.

  19. elwaysthebomb7 says: Jan 16, 2014 6:13 PM

    He’s not jealous of not getting the attention. Manning is nowhere near as close to as popular as elway is in denver. Now or ever.

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