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HOF President David Baker Believes Pat Bowlen Will Be a HOFer

HOF President David Baker Believes Pat Bowlen Will Be a HOFer

11/19/2017
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Original Story by Nicki Jhabvala, The Denver Post
 

Pat Bowlen will be a Hall of Famer, they say. One day.

The longtime Broncos owner was a candidate for the class of 2017 but finished third in the running as Cowboys owner Jerry Jones got his day.

The Year of 2017 would have been a nice one for Bowlen, who stepped down from his day-to-day duties as owner in 2014 because of Alzheimer’s. It would have been nice because, among many reasons, he could have entered the hallowed halls of Canton, Ohio, alongside the Broncos’ all-time leading rusher and one of Bowlen’s most ardent supporters, Terrell Davis.

In his Hall of Fame speech in August, Davis stood before a crowd of thousands as the rain fell in Canton and told of his beloved owner and friend.

“When I tore my ACL, Pat was the first to give me a call in the recovery room. Pat and Annabel, you have been extraordinary owners, dear friends, and your generosity is second to none,” Davis said then.

Friday evening, in a ceremony to honor Davis’ Hall of Fame induction and to award him his Ring of Excellence, Davis again stood at a podium as the rain fell outside to talk about his owner and friend.

“All the stuff he’s done for me as a player,” Davis said, “I can never repay him for that.”

Although Bowlen will have to wait at least another year, David Baker, the president and CEO of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, has no doubt Bowlen’s day will come.

“I think sooner or later, Pat Bowlen will also be in the Hall of Fame,” Baker said Friday. “I think it is a Hall of Fame-worthy life of a guy who has done so much, not only to build this organization, not only to build men like this — and it is special to build men like this — but also to build the league through the TV contracts that were so critical and through the labor contracts. He certainly has an incredibly strong, winning record as well. The last several years, Pat Bowlen’s name has come up. Whether it’s me or my successor, pretty soon we’ll be knocking on the door of the Bowlen family. I don’t have any doubt about that.”

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