1983 Denver Broncos season

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1983 Denver Broncos season
Head coach Dan Reeves
General manager Hein Poulus
Owner Edgar Kaiser
Home field Mile High Stadium
Results
Record 9–7
Division place 3rd AFC West
Playoff finish Lost AFC Wild Card
Timeline
Previous season Next season
< 1982 1984 >

The 1983 Denver Broncos season was its 24th in professional football and 14th in the National Football League (NFL). The team finished the year with nine wins and seven losses, giving them 3rd place in the AFC West and their first playoff berth in four seasons. It was the third season under head coach Dan Reeves.

Before the season, the Broncos traded with the Baltimore Colts for the rights to first overall pick in the 1983 draft, quarterback John Elway. He started ten games for the Broncos as a rookie, and the team won four of them.[1] In his first two starts, both road wins, Elway left the game trailing, relieved by veteran Steve DeBerg.[2][3]

After three straight losses, Elway was benched by Reeves in early October;[4] and DeBerg led the team to four consecutive victories and a 6–3 record. A shoulder injury in a loss in Seattle sidelined him and Elway again became the starter.[5][6] In the rematch with Seattle two weeks later in Denver, Elway was out with the flu and third-string rookie Gary Kubiak led the Broncos to a win.[7][8]

Elway's finest game as a rookie came in Week 15, the Broncos' second game against Baltimore, the team that drafted him. Denver trailed 19–0 at the start of the fourth quarter, until Elway threw for three touchdowns in the final period to win 21–19 and kept their playoff hopes alive.[9][10] The following week was a lopsided road loss at Kansas City in −30 °F (−34 °C) wind chill, but the Broncos made the playoffs, gaining the final AFC berth over Cleveland, also at 9–7, whom they defeated in Week 14.[11]

DeBerg started the wild card playoff loss in Seattle,[8][12] and was relieved by Elway in the fourth quarter.[13]

Personnel[edit]

Staff[edit]

1983 Denver Broncos staff
Front office
  • Owner – Edgar Kaiser
  • Vice President/General Manager – Hein Poulus
  • Director of Football Operations – John Beake
  • Coordinator of College Scouting – Reed Johnson

Head coaches

Offensive coaches

Defensive coaches

Special teams coaches

  • Special Teams – Fran Polsfoot

Strength and conditioning

  • Strength and Conditioning – I. J. Gorman

Source:[14]

Regular season[edit]

Schedule[edit]

Week Date Opponent Result Game site Record Attendance
1 September 4 at Pittsburgh Steelers W 14–10 Three Rivers Stadium 1–0
58,233
2 September 11 at Baltimore Colts W 17–10 Memorial Stadium 2–0
52,613
3 September 18 Philadelphia Eagles L 10–13 Mile High Stadium 2–1
74,202
4 September 25 Los Angeles Raiders L 7–22 Mile High Stadium 2–2
74,289
5 October 2 at Chicago Bears L 14–31 Soldier Field 2–3
58,210
6 October 9 at Houston Oilers W 26–14 Astrodome 3–3
44,209
7 October 16 Cincinnati Bengals W 24–17 Mile High Stadium 4–3
74,305
8 October 23 San Diego Chargers W 14–6 Mile High Stadium 5–3
74,581
9 October 30 Kansas City Chiefs W 27–24 Mile High Stadium 6–3
74,640
10 November 6 at Seattle Seahawks L 19–27 Kingdome 6–4
61,189
11 November 13 at Los Angeles Raiders L 20–22 Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum 6–5
51,945
12 November 20 Seattle Seahawks W 38–27 Mile High Stadium 7–5
74,710
13 November 27 at San Diego Chargers L 7–31 San Diego/Jack Murphy Stadium 7–6
43,650
14 December 4 Cleveland Browns W 27–6 Mile High Stadium 8–6
70,912
15 December 11 Baltimore Colts W 21–19 Mile High Stadium 9–6
74,864
16 December 18 at Kansas City Chiefs L 17–48 Arrowhead Stadium 9–7
11,377

Game summaries[edit]

Week 1[edit]

1 2 3 4 Total
• Broncos 0 7 0 7 14
Steelers 0 7 3 0 10

Source:[2][15]


Week 2[edit]

Denver Broncos (1–0) at Baltimore Colts (0–1)
1 2 3 4 Total
Broncos 0 3 0 14 17
Colts 3 0 0 7 10

Source:[3]

Standings[edit]

AFC West
W L T PCT DIV CONF PF PA
Los Angeles Raiders(1) 12 4 0 .750 6–2 10–2 442 338
Seattle Seahawks(4) 9 7 0 .563 5–3 8–4 403 397
Denver Broncos(5) 9 7 0 .563 3–5 9–5 302 327
San Diego Chargers 6 10 0 .375 4–4 4–8 358 462
Kansas City Chiefs 6 10 0 .375 2–6 4–8 386 367

[16]

Playoffs[edit]

Round Date Opponent Result Game site Attendance
Wild Card Playoffs December 24 at Seattle Seahawks L 7–31 Kingdome
60,752

References[edit]

  1. ^ Pro-Football-Reference.com: 1983 Denver Broncos
  2. ^ a b "Elway hurt; DeBerg directs Broncos win". Gadsden Times (Alabama). Associated Press. September 5, 1983. p. B4. 
  3. ^ a b "Denver's DeBerg keeps rescuing $5 million man". Palm Beach Post. wire services. September 13, 1983. p. D6. 
  4. ^ "Struggling Broncos bench Elway, DeBerg starter for rest of season". Montreal Gazette. UPI. October 6, 1983. p. D-14. 
  5. ^ Harris, John (November 7, 1983). "Warner shows off for grandfather". Spokane Chronicle. p. 21. 
  6. ^ "Elway back as starter after Broncos lose DeBerg". Montreal Gazette. news services. November 8, 1983. p. D10. 
  7. ^ Mossman, John (November 21, 1983). "Broncos romp behind reserve QB". Spokane Chronicle. Associated Press. p. C1. 
  8. ^ a b "Broncos center ball to DeBerg for playoff against Seahawks". Pittsburgh Press. Associated Press. December 23, 1983. p. C2. 
  9. ^ Pro-Football-Reference.com: Baltimore Colts 19 at Denver Broncos 21; Sunday, December 11, 1983
  10. ^ "NFL roundup". Spokane Chronicle. Associated Press. December 12, 1983. p. 15. 
  11. ^ "NFL roundup". Spokane Chronicle. Associated Press. December 19, 1983. p. 28. 
  12. ^ Cour, Jim (December 23, 1983). "Broncos to bench Elway, start DeBerg". Evening News (Newburgh-Beacon, New York). Associated Press. p. 2B. 
  13. ^ Hewitt, Brian (December 26, 1983). "The laughing stops". Spokane Chronicle. (Chicago Sun-Times). p. 21. 
  14. ^ 2010 Denver Broncos Media Guide. p. 361. Retrieved March 6, 2011. 
  15. ^ Pro-Football-Reference.com
  16. ^ 2010 NFL Record and Fact Book (PDF). National Football League. p. 384. Retrieved March 7, 2011. 

External links[edit]