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The streets of Denver were consumed in a sea of orange and blue yesterday, as Broncos fans poured in from all over the state to celebrate the team’s victory in Super Bowl 50. The parade began by Union Station, and marched along 17th Street to Broadway, and down to Civic Center Park, which was packed with an awaiting crowd. Annabel Bowlen, wife of ailing team owner Pat Bowlen, carried the Vince Lombari Trophy atop the parade’s first fire truck—by no coincidence, emblazoned with number 18—accompanied by game MVP and standout outside linebacker Von Miller, linebacker DeMarcus Ware, and of course, the Sheriff himself, Peyton Manning.
On the steps of the City and County Building, Mayor Michael Hancock—a self-proclaimed lifelong Broncos fan—welcomed the guests of honor as they rolled up to the park, eliciting a roar from the estimated one million fans that could be heard all the way from Union Station.
“How sweet it is!” he exclaimed. “The Lombardi Trophy is back in the Mile High City!”
As coach Gary Kubiak and select players took the mic, they exalted the team effort that brought home the World Championship. “It was definitely a team season; everyone did their part,” Manning said. “No question, the defense led the charge. The offense did our part, made plays at critical times. All 53 guys on the roster helped us win the Super Bowl.”
But as the team reflected on what was undoubtedly an exceptional season, it was Miller who looked to the future: “Back to back, right?”
For Denver’s legions of die-hard fans, we can only hope.