The Denver Broncos could be up for sale this spring. If that's the case, John Elway, the franchise's greatest player and a longtime Broncos executive, would like to be included in Denver's new ownership group.
"Who knows where that is and where that falls, but I do have interest in being a part of it," Elway told 9News' Mike Klis on Monday. "The Broncos have been in my life for 40 years, so I'd love to be a part of it. So it's a matter of seeing how everything plays out and what's going to happen. I'm sure there will be a lot of things going on, but I would definitely like to be involved."
A court ruling last week cleared the way for a potential transfer of Broncos ownership. Denver County District Court Judge Shelley I. Gilman ruled that a right of first refusal agreement between late owners Pat Bowlen and Edgar Kaiser was "no longer valid or enforceable in any respect" and "has terminated in its entirety."
The Broncos haven't had an acting owner since the late Pro Football Hall of Fame owner Bowlen turned over control in 2014 to longtime president/CEO Joe Ellis amid Bowlen's battle with Alzheimer's disease. Bowlen died in 2019. The franchise is believed to be worth around $4 billion.
Elway is as synonymous with the Broncos as any player has ever been with any franchise in NFL history. A nine-time Pro Bowler, league MVP and two-time Super Bowl champion with the Broncos, Elway first debuted under center for Denver in 1983 and never played for another team.
Elway has also worked in the Broncos front office since 2011 when he was hired as Denver's general manager and executive vice president of football operations. Under Elway's watch, the Broncos won the AFC West in five consecutive seasons and made two Super Bowl appearances, winning one title, but then missed the playoffs over their next five campaigns. Ahead of the 2021 season, Elway was reassigned as president of football operations and the Broncos hired George Paton as general manager.
Denver is also in the midst of a coaching search after Paton and Co. fired head coach Vic Fangio earlier this month after three seasons at the helm. Ellis has said the team plans "to make an announcement regarding ownership" shortly after the head coaching hire is made.
Change is afoot everywhere you look in Denver. Elway wants to be a part of the transition.
"It's been my life, so I'd like to stay involved,'' Elway said. "We'll see how everything goes but the bottom line is I think I can help the new owner. It should be their club. And it's the coaches, it's the players, and it's George's club. I want to be here in a support role with all the knowledge I have around the league so I can in that area. I don't want to overshadow an owner.''