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Published: June 14, 2019 at 11:02 a.m.
Updated: June 14, 2019 at 11:10 a.m.

Pat Bowlen through the years

Longtime Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen passed away Thursday at the age of 75 after a lengthy battle with Alzheimer's disease. Bowlen, who bought the Denver franchise with his siblings in 1984, helped the Broncos become one of the winningest teams in NFL history, earning three Super Bowl trophies (XXXII, XXXIII, 50), seven AFC championships and will be enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame with the 2019 class this August in Canton. He served as the co-chair of the NFL Management Council Executive Committee and the chair of the NFL Broadcasting Committee, playing an instrumental role in many league decisions. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said "the league is better because of Pat's extraordinary contributions."

31 Photos Total

  • Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen holds up the Lamar Hunt trophy for the AFC Champion following an AFC Championship NFL football playoff game against the New England Patriots on Jan. 19, 2014 in Denver. The Broncos won the game, 26-16. 31

    Tom DiPace/Associated Press

    Pat Bowlen

    Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen holds up the Lamar Hunt trophy for the AFC Champion following an AFC Championship NFL football playoff game against the New England Patriots on Jan. 19, 2014 in Denver. The Broncos won the game, 26-16.

  • Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen during an NFL regular season game against the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday, Nov. 17, 2013 in Denver. The Broncos won the game, 27-17. 30

    Ric Tapia/NFL

    Pat Bowlen

    Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen during an NFL regular season game against the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday, Nov. 17, 2013 in Denver. The Broncos won the game, 27-17.

  • Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen signs autographs for fans before the start of an NFL football game against the New Orleans Saints, Sunday, Oct. 28, 2012, in Denver. 29

    Jack Dempsey/Associated Press

    Pat Bowlen

    Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen signs autographs for fans before the start of an NFL football game against the New Orleans Saints, Sunday, Oct. 28, 2012, in Denver.

  • Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen and former wide receiver Rod Smith walk onto the field  for a Ring of Fame ceremony during an NFL football game between the Denver Broncos and the Houston Texans Sunday, Sept. 23, 2012, in Denver. 28

    Jack Dempsey/Associated Press

    Pat Bowlen, Rod Smith

    Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen and former wide receiver Rod Smith walk onto the field for a Ring of Fame ceremony during an NFL football game between the Denver Broncos and the Houston Texans Sunday, Sept. 23, 2012, in Denver.

  • Newly-signed Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning, center, shows off his new jersey with owner Pat Bowlen, left, and executive vice president of football operations John Elway during a news conference at the team's headquarters in Englewood, Colo., on Tuesday, March 20, 2012. 27

    David Zalubowski/Associated Press

    Peyton Manning, John Elway, Pat Bowlen

    Newly-signed Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning, center, shows off his new jersey with owner Pat Bowlen, left, and executive vice president of football operations John Elway during a news conference at the team's headquarters in Englewood, Colo., on Tuesday, March 20, 2012.

  • Denver Broncos Executive Vice President of Football Operations John Elway, left, and Owner Pat Bowlen watch drills on the sidelines prior to action against the Buffalo Bills  in the NFL game August 18, 2011 at Invesco Field in Denver, CO. 26

    Eric Lars Bakke/Associated Press

    Pat Bowlen, John Elway

    Denver Broncos Executive Vice President of Football Operations John Elway, left, and Owner Pat Bowlen watch drills on the sidelines prior to action against the Buffalo Bills in the NFL game August 18, 2011 at Invesco Field in Denver, CO.

  • Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen, right, talks with his son John Bowlen during NFL football training camp in Englewood, Colo., on Friday, July 29, 2011. 25

    Jack Dempsey/Associated Press

    Pat Bowlen, John Bowlen

    Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen, right, talks with his son John Bowlen during NFL football training camp in Englewood, Colo., on Friday, July 29, 2011.

  • John Fox, right, the new head football coach of the NFL team Denver Broncos, poses for a photo with owner Pat Bowlen, center, and John Elway, Executive V.P. of football operations, at the teams headquarters in Englewood, Colo. on Jan. 14, 2011. 24

    Ed Andrieski/Associated Press

    John Elway, Pat Bowlen, John Fox

    John Fox, right, the new head football coach of the NFL team Denver Broncos, poses for a photo with owner Pat Bowlen, center, and John Elway, Executive V.P. of football operations, at the teams headquarters in Englewood, Colo. on Jan. 14, 2011.

  • Denver Broncos Majority Owner, President, and Chief Executive Officer Patrick Bowlen talks on the phone before a game against the Arizona Cardinals in an NFL football game Sunday, Dec. 12, 2010 in Glendale, Ariz. 23

    Rick Scuteri/Associated Press

    Pat Bowlen

    Denver Broncos Majority Owner, President, and Chief Executive Officer Patrick Bowlen talks on the phone before a game against the Arizona Cardinals in an NFL football game Sunday, Dec. 12, 2010 in Glendale, Ariz.

  • Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen look son prior to the start of an NFL football game between the St. Louis Rams and the Denver Broncos Sunday, Nov. 28, 2010, in Denver. 22

    Joe Mahoney/Associated Press

    Pat Bowlen

    Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen look son prior to the start of an NFL football game between the St. Louis Rams and the Denver Broncos Sunday, Nov. 28, 2010, in Denver.

  • Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen, right, talks to Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, left,  on the field prior to an NFL football game Sunday, Oct. 4, 2009, in Denver. 21

    Chris Schneider/Associated Press

    Pat Bowlen, Jerry Jones

    Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen, right, talks to Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, left, on the field prior to an NFL football game Sunday, Oct. 4, 2009, in Denver.

  • Former Denver Broncos offensive tackle Gary Zimmerman, left, stands next to his bronze bust with Broncos owner Pat Bowlen and former Broncos quarterback, Hall of Famer John Elway, at the Pro Football Hall of Fame on Saturday, Aug. 2, 2008 in Canton, Ohio. 20

    Kiichiro Sato/Associated Press

    Gary Zimmerman, Pat Bowlen, John Elway

    Former Denver Broncos offensive tackle Gary Zimmerman, left, stands next to his bronze bust with Broncos owner Pat Bowlen and former Broncos quarterback, Hall of Famer John Elway, at the Pro Football Hall of Fame on Saturday, Aug. 2, 2008 in Canton, Ohio.

  • Former President George H.W. Bush, right, laughs as he talks with Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen before the Broncos football game against the Houston Texans, Thursday, Dec. 13, 2007 in Houston. 19

    David J. Phillip/Associated Press

    George H.W. Bush, Pat Bowlen

    Former President George H.W. Bush, right, laughs as he talks with Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen before the Broncos football game against the Houston Texans, Thursday, Dec. 13, 2007 in Houston.

  • Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen looks on during pre-game warmups before the Broncos play the San Diego Chargers in an NFL football game in Denver on Sunday, Oct. 7, 2007. 18

    David Zalubowski/Associated Press

    Pat Bowlen

    Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen looks on during pre-game warmups before the Broncos play the San Diego Chargers in an NFL football game in Denver on Sunday, Oct. 7, 2007.

  • Pat Bowlen, owner of the Denver Broncos, introduces retired Denver Broncos running back Terrell Davis during a halftime ceremony to induct Davis into the team's "Ring of Fame" in the Jacksonville Jaguars' 24-13 victory over the Broncos in a football game in Denver on Sunday, Sept. 23, 2007. 17

    David Zalubowski/Associated Press

    Pat Bowlen

    Pat Bowlen, owner of the Denver Broncos, introduces retired Denver Broncos running back Terrell Davis during a halftime ceremony to induct Davis into the team's "Ring of Fame" in the Jacksonville Jaguars' 24-13 victory over the Broncos in a football game in Denver on Sunday, Sept. 23, 2007.

  • Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen, left, welcomes Houston Texans head coach Gary Kubiak as the Texans take the field for warmup prior to Sunday night's exhibition game in Denver on Sunday, Aug. 27, 2006.  Kubiak was a backup quarterback and then offensive coordinator for the Broncos for more than 20 years.  He became head coach at the Texans in February. 16

    Jack Dempsey/Associated Press

    Pat Bowlen, Gary Kubiak

    Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen, left, welcomes Houston Texans head coach Gary Kubiak as the Texans take the field for warmup prior to Sunday night's exhibition game in Denver on Sunday, Aug. 27, 2006. Kubiak was a backup quarterback and then offensive coordinator for the Broncos for more than 20 years. He became head coach at the Texans in February.

  • Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen, left, and head coach Mike Shanahan talk following the morning football training camp session at the Broncos' headquarters in Denver, Saturday, Aug. 5, 2006. 15

    Jack Dempsey/Associated Press

    Pat Bowlen, Mike Shanahan

    Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen, left, and head coach Mike Shanahan talk following the morning football training camp session at the Broncos' headquarters in Denver, Saturday, Aug. 5, 2006.

  • Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen holds the Vince Lombardi Super Bowl trophy over his head and his wife, Annabelle, right, waves, as they ride a fire truck through downtown Denver in a victory parade on Monday, Feb. 1, 1999. The Broncos returned to Denver Monday after winning Super Bowl XXXIII. 14

    Ed Andrieski/Associated Press

    Pat Bowlen

    Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen holds the Vince Lombardi Super Bowl trophy over his head and his wife, Annabelle, right, waves, as they ride a fire truck through downtown Denver in a victory parade on Monday, Feb. 1, 1999. The Broncos returned to Denver Monday after winning Super Bowl XXXIII.

  • Pat Bowlen, left, owner of the Denver Broncos holds the Lombardi Trophy as he talks with Fox Football analyst Terry Bradshaw at the conclusion of Super Bowl XXXIII Jan. 31, 1999, at Pro Player Stadium in Miami. The Denver Broncos defeated the Atlanta Falcons by 34-19. 13

    Allen Kee/Associated Press

    Pat Bowlen, Terry Bradshaw

    Pat Bowlen, left, owner of the Denver Broncos holds the Lombardi Trophy as he talks with Fox Football analyst Terry Bradshaw at the conclusion of Super Bowl XXXIII Jan. 31, 1999, at Pro Player Stadium in Miami. The Denver Broncos defeated the Atlanta Falcons by 34-19.

  • Pat Bowlen, owner of the Denver Broncos, left, and Denver Broncos Hall of Fame quarterback John Elway (7) are seen at the conclusion of Super Bowl XXXIII Jan. 31, 1999, at Pro Player Stadium in Miami. The Denver Broncos defeated the Atlanta Falcons by 34-19. 12

    Allen Kee/Associated Press

    Pat Bowlen, John Elway

    Pat Bowlen, owner of the Denver Broncos, left, and Denver Broncos Hall of Fame quarterback John Elway (7) are seen at the conclusion of Super Bowl XXXIII Jan. 31, 1999, at Pro Player Stadium in Miami. The Denver Broncos defeated the Atlanta Falcons by 34-19.

  • President Clinton and Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen hold the Vince Lombardi Trophy during a ceremony at the White House Tuesday June 16,1998 where the president honored the Super Bowl XXXII champions. Super Bowl Most Valuable Player Terrell Davis is at right. 11

    Greg Gibson/Associated Press

    Pat Bowlen, President Bill Clinton

    President Clinton and Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen hold the Vince Lombardi Trophy during a ceremony at the White House Tuesday June 16,1998 where the president honored the Super Bowl XXXII champions. Super Bowl Most Valuable Player Terrell Davis is at right.

  • Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen is on the victory stand after Super Bowl XXXII Jan. 25, 1998 in San Diego. 10

    Al Messerschmidt/Associated Press

    John Eway, Pat Bowlen, Paul Tagliabue

    Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen is on the victory stand after Super Bowl XXXII Jan. 25, 1998 in San Diego.

  • The Denver Broncos win the AFC title January 1998.  On the victory stand: Don Shula (left to right) team president Pat Bowlen; Brian Gumble and coach Mike Shanahan. 9

    Al Messerschmidt/Associated Press

    Mike Shanahan, Don Shula, Pat Bowlen, Brian Gumble

    The Denver Broncos win the AFC title January 1998. On the victory stand: Don Shula (left to right) team president Pat Bowlen; Brian Gumble and coach Mike Shanahan.

  • The new Denver Broncos helmet is displayed by owner Patrick Bowlen during a press conference in Denver, Colo., Feb. 4, 1997. 8

    Eric Lars Bakke/Associated Press

    Pat Bowlen

    The new Denver Broncos helmet is displayed by owner Patrick Bowlen during a press conference in Denver, Colo., Feb. 4, 1997.

  • President Pat Bowlen of the Denver Broncos watches play in 1993. 7

    Al Messerschmidt/Associated Press

    Pat Bowlen

    President Pat Bowlen of the Denver Broncos watches play in 1993.

  • President Pat Bowlen of the Denver Broncos with coach Wade Phillips checks the field before play against the San Diego Chargers Dec. 5, 1993 in San Diego, California. 6

    Al Messerschmidt/Associated Press

    Wade Phillips, Pat Bowlen

    President Pat Bowlen of the Denver Broncos with coach Wade Phillips checks the field before play against the San Diego Chargers Dec. 5, 1993 in San Diego, California.

  • Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen watches from the sideline before an NFL game against the Pittsburgh Steelers on November 21, 1993. The Broncos defeated the Steelers 31-28. 5

    Peter Read Miller/Associated Press

    Pat Bowlen

    Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen watches from the sideline before an NFL game against the Pittsburgh Steelers on November 21, 1993. The Broncos defeated the Steelers 31-28.

  • Denver Broncos owner Patrick Bowlen and head coach Mike Shanahan watch pregame workouts before an NFL preseason game against the Miami Dolphins in Mexico City, on August 4, 1990. The Dolphins defeated the Broncos 38-19. 4

    Eric Lars Bakke/Associated Press

    Pat Bowlen, Mike Shanahan

    Denver Broncos owner Patrick Bowlen and head coach Mike Shanahan watch pregame workouts before an NFL preseason game against the Miami Dolphins in Mexico City, on August 4, 1990. The Dolphins defeated the Broncos 38-19.

  • NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue meets with Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen at Super Bowl XXIV January 28, 1990 in New Orleans, Louisiana. 3

    Al Messerschmidt/Associated Press

    Paul Tagliabue, Pat Bowlen

    NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue meets with Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen at Super Bowl XXIV January 28, 1990 in New Orleans, Louisiana.

  • U.S. Ambassador Charles H. Price puts on a specially made jacket that is half Los Angeles Rams and half Denver Broncos, s the two team owners, Georgia Frontiere and Pat Bowlen, watch during a reception at Price's home in London, Aug. 8, 1987. The Rams and Broncos will meet Sunday for an exhibition game at Wembley. 2

    Doug Pizac/Associated Press

    Charles H. Price, Georgia Frontiere, Pat Bowlen

    U.S. Ambassador Charles H. Price puts on a specially made jacket that is half Los Angeles Rams and half Denver Broncos, s the two team owners, Georgia Frontiere and Pat Bowlen, watch during a reception at Price's home in London, Aug. 8, 1987. The Rams and Broncos will meet Sunday for an exhibition game at Wembley.

  • Georgia Frontiere, Los Angeles Rams owner, and Patrick Bowlen, owner of the Denver Broncos, pose with a football and helmets of the Rams, left, and Broncos, right, during a meeting in London, April 23, 1987, where preparations are underway for the NFL's American Bowl 1987 game between their teams to be played at Wembley Stadium in London on August 9. 1

    DeWitt/Associated Press

    Pat Bowlen, Georgia Frontiere

    Georgia Frontiere, Los Angeles Rams owner, and Patrick Bowlen, owner of the Denver Broncos, pose with a football and helmets of the Rams, left, and Broncos, right, during a meeting in London, April 23, 1987, where preparations are underway for the NFL's American Bowl 1987 game between their teams to be played at Wembley Stadium in London on August 9.