The Broncos reached deep into their history to find one of the three new members of their Ring of Fame.
Gene Mingo was a member of the first Broncos team in 1960 and had the first punt return for a touchdown in AFL history in the first AFL game. That was a Broncos victory over the Patriots and Mingo contributed to many more wins as a halfback and kicker through the 1964 season. According to a release from the Broncos, Mingo was also the first African-American kicker in professional football.
Mingo will be honored alongside former head coach Dan Reeves and wide receiver Rick Upchurch. Reeves led the team to three AFC titles and five division championships between 1981 and 1992. He ranks second in franchise history in regular season and playoff wins behind Mike Shanahan.
Upchurch spent nine years with the Broncos and made the Associated Press All-Pro team three teams as a kick returner. Upchurch, who had eight career punt return touchdowns, was also named the returner on the NFL’s All-1970s team.
[Photo credit: Denver Broncos Football Club]