French explorer Ponce de Leon searched years for the Fountain of Youth in South Florida. Too bad John Elway wasn't around then to show him where it was.
"It's amazing," the 38-year-old Elway explained Monday, a day after being named Super Bowl XXXIII's Most Valuable Player. "I was talking to (Miami Dolphins quarterback) Danny Marino the other night and I said, 'No wonder you're talking about playing three more years. You get down here in the sun and your bones feel pretty good.' "
The Denver quarterback showed the world exactly how good last night, throwing for 336 yards – the third-highest total in Super Bowl history – and a touchdown in the Broncos' 34-19 victory over the Atlanta Falcons. For his efforts, Elway was awarded the MVP trophy.
"I really never thought I'd be standing here the morning after the Super Bowl as the MVP," Elway said. "It's really one of the great thrills of my career and something I'll always remember."
Once he comes to, that is.
"I still feel like this morning is last night," Elway admitted. "I haven't had a chance to lay down and change days yet. It's still Sunday to me."
Should Elway decide to come back and play a 17th NFL season, he would have the opportunity to win three championships in a row – something that has never been accomplished. For that reason, perhaps, Elway has left the door open for his return.
"As I've said all year, there's a 90 percent chance I'm going to quit," Elway said. "The last thing I want to do is shut the door. I don't want to say I'm done and then get into March or April and say I can go one more year. So I want to take the time to do that and not close the door.
"The thing I know is the way the game's going, you can't start in July and expect to have a good year. The season starts in April. It's a nine-month job. So I have to have a good idea, my mind's got to be set by April."
"I don't want to come back and just go through the motions. If I come back it's going to be full bent trying to repeat."
In addition to the trophy, Elway was awarded a brand new 1999 Ford Expedition, passing up a Mustang.