Bronco’s Pat Bowlen Recalled As ‘The Ultimate Owner’

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Photo: Pat Bowlen
Denver Broncos team owner Pat Bowlen.

This story first aired on 10/29/2015 right before Pat Bowlen was inducted into the Broncos' Ring of Fame.

After 30 years at the helm, Pat Bowlen is no longer involved in day-to-day operations of the Denver Broncos. Last year, Broncos officials confirmed rumors that he has Alzheimer's and announced he would step down. And his is now the latest name on the Broncos' Ring of Fame.

But Bowlen's influence on the team remains perhaps most prominently in the presence of John Elway, former quarterback and now executive vice president. Bowlen lured him back to the Broncos in 2011.

John Lynch played defense for Bowlen from 2004-2007, and calls him "the ultimate owner." Lynch spoke with Colorado Matters host Ryan Warner.

Lynch on what made Bowlen most special:

"Being around him, there was never any doubt as to what his intention was, and that was to win a world championship. So many other places they pay lip service to that but it's not reflected in their actions, where they're putting their resources. The [Broncos] do such a great job of always making that their goal, and I think that's due, everybody always says it starts from the top on down."

On Bowlen's own athletic abilities:

"He was a beast in the weight room... he was a hardcore triathlete. He believed in having fun and living hard. He wasn't a guy who just kind of went about things easy. When I was [a player in Denver], he was primarily on the StairMaster. He used to put players to shame... he'd get on there and the thing could only go for 99 minutes, and he would go at the very top level. And people would sit there and marvel."

On the last time he saw Bowlen, after Bowlen developed Alzheimer's disease:

"About three, four years ago, my family and I were up at Christmas skiing. And I happened to see Pat and [wife] Annabel, and I think it's the last time he went skiing. And he happened to be having, if you've ever been around someone with Alzheimer's, there's good days, and as it gets worse there's a lot more bad days. But this was a good day. And I think it was because he was so familiar to those mountains. He had skied and Annabel told me how great he was doing. We shared some good moments together. And I think to remember those great times is so special."