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|1977 Denver Broncos season|
|Head coach||Red Miller|
|General manager||Fred Gehrke|
|Home field||Mile High Stadium|
|Division place||1st AFC West|
|Playoff finish||Won AFC Divisional Playoffs (Steelers) 34–21|
Won AFC Championship (Raiders) 20–17
Lost Super Bowl XII
(vs. Cowboys) 27–10
The team had by far its best season to date at 12–2, first in the AFC West, and made the playoffs for the first time in franchise history. The Broncos earned home field advantage, and won its first two playoff games (over perennial AFC powerhouses Pittsburgh and Oakland). With the AFC Championship win over the Raiders on New Year's Day, Denver earned a berth in Super Bowl XII, but fell 27–10 to the NFC champion Dallas Cowboys.
Still, 1977 was a major leap for the Broncos, who had never won more than nine games in a season. Coach Red Miller — in his first season as the Broncos' head coach — was named NFL Coach of the Year, and quarterback Craig Morton, age 34, was named NFL Comeback Player of the Year. The Denver defense was known as the Orange Crush, which delighted the makers of the soft drink, based in Illinois.
Denver's 1977 season is chronicled in Terry Frei's 2008 book, '77: Denver, the Broncos and a Coming of Age.
|1977 Denver Broncos draft|
|1||18||Steve Schindler||G||Boston College|
|10||268||Oren Middlebrook||WR||Arkansas State|
|12||324||Scott Levenhagen||TE||Western Illinois|
|Made roster † Pro Football Hall of Fame * Made at least one Pro Bowl during career|
Special teams coaches
|1||September 18||St. Louis Cardinals||W 7–0||1–0||Mile High Stadium|
|2||September 25||Buffalo Bills||W 26–6||2–0||Mile High Stadium|
|3||October 2||at Seattle Seahawks||W 24–13||3–0||Kingdome|
|4||October 9||Kansas City Chiefs||W 23–7||4–0||Mile High Stadium|
|5||October 16||at Oakland Raiders||W 30–7||5–0||Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum|
|6||October 23||at Cincinnati Bengals||W 24–13||6–0||Riverfront Stadium|
|7||October 30||Oakland Raiders||L 14–24||6���1||Mile High Stadium|
|8||November 6||Pittsburgh Steelers||W 21–7||7–1||Mile High Stadium|
|9||November 13||at San Diego Chargers||W 17–14||8–1||San Diego Stadium|
|10||November 20||at Kansas City Chiefs||W 14–7||9–1||Arrowhead Stadium|
|11||November 27||Baltimore Colts||W 27–13||10–1||Mile High Stadium|
|12||December 4||at Houston Oilers||W 24–14||11–1||Astrodome|
|13||December 11||San Diego Chargers||W 17–9||12–1||Mile High Stadium|
|14||December 18||at Dallas Cowboys||L 6–14||12–2||Texas Stadium|
|San Diego Chargers||7||7||0||.500||3–4||6–6||222||205||L2|
|Kansas City Chiefs||2||12||0||.143||1–6||1–11||225||349||L6|
|Divisional Playoffs||December 24||Pittsburgh Steelers||W 34–21||Mile High Stadium|
|AFC Championship||January 1||Oakland Raiders||W 20–17||Mile High Stadium|
|Super Bowl XII||January 15||Dallas Cowboys||L 10–27||Louisiana Superdome|
- Marshall, Joe (January 2, 1978). "That Crushmas spirit". Sports Illustrated. p. 14.
- Jenkins, Dan (January 9, 1978). "Wholly Moses for Denver". Sports Illustrated. p. 14.
- Jenkins, Dan (January 23, 1978). "Doomsday in the Dome". Sports Illustrated. p. 16.
- "Broncos 'pay off' Crush". Spokesman-Review. (Spokane, Washington). January 15, 1978. p. D1.
- Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved 2014-Dec-25.
- Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved 2015-Dec-10.
- Box Score
- "Denver becomes the stealers and triumphs". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). wire service reports. December 25, 1977. p. 3C.
- Brady, Dave (December 25, 1977). "Morton leads Broncos". Lewiston Morning Tribune. (Idaho). (Washington Post). p. 1B.
- "Broncos turn a dream into Super reality". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). wire service reports. January 2, 1978. p. 1B.
- Howitt, Bruce (January 2, 1978). "Denver and Dallas in Super shoot-out". Lewiston Morning Tribune. (Idaho). Associated Press. p. 1B.
- "It's Doomsday for the Broncos". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). wire service reports. January 16, 1978. p. 1B.
- "'Doomsday II' tames Broncos, XXVII to X". Lewiston Morning Tribune. (Idaho). Associated Press. January 16, 1978. p. 1B.