NFL fans across the world woke up to sad news today, as longtime Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen passed away at the age of 75 following a battle with Alzheimer’s. His Broncos released the following statement:
It is with heavy hearts and profound sadness that the Denver Broncos mourn the loss of Owner Pat Bowlen, who passed away late Thursday night at age 75 following his courageous battle with Alzheimer’s disease. The Broncos extend their deepest sympathies to Mr. Bowlen’s wife, Annabel, his children (Amie, Beth, Patrick, Johnny, Brittany, Annabel, Christianna) and his entire family. The organization also offers its sincere condolences to Broncos fans, Mr. Bowlen’s friends and the many individuals around the National Football League who worked with him. A 2019 Pro Football Hall of Fame selection, Mr. Bowlen guided the Broncos during his 35-year ownership with a simple phrase: “I want to be No. 1 in everything.” He was introduced as majority owner of the Broncos on March 23, 1984, and made it clear throughout his ownership that he wanted the organization to be focused on winning and making a difference in the community. “Nobody is going to care whether the team is worth a billion dollars or whatever,” Bowlen once said. “That doesn’t matter. It’s more about how successful you were as an organization and as a team on the field and in the community.” With his immeasurable impact on the Broncos, the NFL and the community, Mr. Bowlen firmly established himself as one of the greatest contributors in professional football history.
The following are just some of the many press releases and tweets that individuals and teams have sent out in the hours following the breaking news. The TWN Team released a statement on our social media this morning extending our thoughts and prayers to the Bowlen family.
Jon Elway | Denver Broncos President of Football Operations/General Manager
“Pat gave me so much and he was someone that I always looked up to. He gave this team everything we needed to be the best and compete for championships, and the focus was always on football. That’s all you can ask for in an owner—yet he did more. He was a tremendous mentor to me and a tremendous friend. Pat was a great listener, always asking what was going on, and I learned so much from watching him. He was a terrific leader. Whether things were going right or things weren’t going right, he would always let you know what we needed to get better. He did a great job of applying pressure at the right times but always trusted his football people to make the right decisions. Other than his family, nothing meant more to Pat than making sure the Denver Broncos were successful. What he did for this team, this city and the entire NFL will never be matched. His shoes will never be filled. I will miss Pat greatly and will always treasure the times we had together. We’ll continue to take care of his team as if he were here today. My deepest sympathies are with Annabel and the entire Bowlen family.”
Al Michaels | NFL Commentator
Jim Irsay | Indianapolis Colts Owner & CEO
Martha Firestone Ford | Detroit Lions Owner
Clark Hunt | Kansas City Chiefs Chairman & CEO
Robert Kraft | New England Patriots Chairman & CEO
Jeffrey Lurie | Philadelphia Eagles Chairman & CEO
Bryan Glazer | Tampa Bay Buccaneers Owner & Co-Chairman
“Pat Bowlen enjoyed great success during his 35 years as owner of the Denver Broncos. Our league is better today for having benefitted from Pat’s influence, passion and business acumen which led to his induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. We send our sincere condolences to his wife, Annabel, as well as the entire Bowlen family and the Denver Broncos organization.”
Arthur Blank | Atlanta Falcons Owner