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#pounditThursday, March 23, 2023

John Elway says he hung up on league office over quarterback situation

John Elway

Few teams got stuck by the NFL’s COVID-19 rules worse last season than the Denver Broncos.

You may recall that in Week 12 last season, the Broncos had to start practice squad wide receiver Kendall Hinton at quarterback in a disastrous situation.

One of the team’s backups, Jeff Driskel, tested positive for COVID-19 a day after spending time at the practice facility with the team’s other quarterbacks. The NFL ruled quarterbacks Drew Lock, Brett Rypien, and Blake Bortles ineligible for the team’s game because they were deemed close contacts of Driskel.

Rather than push the team’s game against the New Orleans Saints back a few days until the other quarterbacks were cleared, the NFL forced Denver to play that Sunday as originally scheduled.

John Elway, who was the Broncos’ general manager at the time, says he hung up on the league office out of frustration over the situation.

“I got a little mad about that,” Elway recalled to’s Mike Silver. “Well, I hung up on the league office. I said, ‘Dawn, I’m sorry: I’ve had enough of this, and I’m hanging up.’ At least I did it respectfully.”

Elway also shared that Saints GM Mickey Loomis was willing to delay the game by a few days. That didn’t matter to the NFL, which made the Broncos play. Elway felt like the league unfairly made an example out of Denver.

Compare what happened with the Broncos to what happened in the Ravens-Steelers game last year, and it’s hard not to feel like Denver got screwed.

H/T MileHigh Huddle


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