On Now
Coming Up
  • Sat., Aug. 23, 2014 7:00 PM MDT Broncos Bowl Youth Football Recognition

    All youth foorball teams that participated in the 2014 Broncos Bowl will be in attendance for the Broncos' preseason game against the Houston Texans, and they will be recognized pregame in celebration of their participation in the event and youth football.

  • Sun., Aug. 31, 2014 9:00 AM - 12:00 PM MDT Broncos/Sports Authority Back to Football 7K

    Get Back To Football with the Broncos 7K!

    Sunday, August 31, 2014 at 9 a.m.

    • Meet alumni players, cheerleaders, and Miles the Mascot!
    • Run through the team tunnel and onto the 50 yard line!
    • T-shirt and finisher’s medal.
    • Win prizes like game tickets, autographed merchandise, and more!

    Sign-up today at www.broncos7k.com.

    The 7K is presented by Sports Authority, Rocky Mountain Popcorn, Maxx Sunglasses, Elements Massage and 9News.

  • Wed., Sep. 03, 2014 5:00 PM MDT Gatorade Junior Training Camp Play 60 Fall Kickoff Kickoff event for Play 60 with local Boys and Girls Clubs
  • Thu., Sep. 04, 2014 5:00 PM MDT Gatorade Junior Training Camp Play 60 Fall Kickoff Kickoff event for Play 60 with local Boys and Girls Clubs
  • Sun., Oct. 05, 2014 2:05 PM MDT Denver Broncos Pink Game The Denver Broncos annual Salute to Survivors halftime recognition, celebrating breast cancer survivors at the team's game against the Arizona Cardinals.
  • Tue., Oct. 07, 2014 8:30 AM - 5:30 PM MDT Drive for Life XVII

    Bonfils Blood Center and the Denver Broncos work together on an annual Drive for Life event which is the largest single day blood drive in Colorado.

    Tuesday, October 7, 2014
    Sports Authority Field at Mile High
    DenverBroncos.com/Community

  • Tue., Oct. 14, 2014 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM MDT Hometown Huddle Broncos Hometown Huddle
  • Tue., Nov. 25, 2014 6:00 AM - 4:00 PM MST Thanksgiving Turkey Distribution Denver Rescue Mission Annual Thanksgiving Turkey Distribution
  • Sun., Dec. 07, 2014 2:05 PM MST Play 60/Fuel Up to Play 60 Tribute Game Play 60/Fuel Up to Play 60 tribute game. Teams will be recognized before the team's game against the Buffalo Bills.
  • Mon., Dec. 08, 2014 6:00 PM MST Annual Thunder Christmas Party Annual Thunder Christmas Party for Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Denver

News & Blogs

Print
RSS

Reflecting on Kuper's Career

Posted Mar 10, 2014

Independent analyst Andrew Mason takes a look back at Chris Kuper's career -- and the injury that changed it.

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- Chris Kuper had the bad timing to be drafted in 2006, just as the Broncos were about to begin their longest playoff absence since the 1970s -- and that's why what ultimately befell him on Jan. 1, 2012 against the Chiefs was so frustrating.

It was the day the Broncos clinched their first playoff spot since 2005, which would have been the first postseason trip of Kuper's career. As one of the longest-tenured Broncos on the roster, he'd more than paid his dues in anticipation of that moment.

But as the Broncos began preparations for a wild-card clash with the Pittsburgh Steelers, Kuper was preparing for surgery on his left leg, which was fractured in gruesome fashion in that regular-season finale.

Kuper was never the same after that injury, in which his fibula was broken in multiple places and his ankle ligaments were torn. A fractured left forearm suffered in training camp the following summer didn't help, but from that point forward, pain in the left leg was something Kuper had to endure in order to play.

He had more surgery after a truncated 2012 season in which he dealt with problems in the same ankle. That year also provided the Pro Bowl selection that he had deserved years before, but more surgery prevented him from taking the trip to Hawai'i.

That's a shame. Even though his leg kept him from playing at a Pro Bowl level in 2012, he had played at that point from 2009-11. Through quarterback and offensive scheme changes, he was the rock of the line. The captain's "C" he wore on his jersey in recent years was earned through diligence and success.

Fortunately for Kuper, he was able to flourish long enough to reap financial rewards from his career. Although he didn't last for the entire length of the contract he signed in June 2010, he was able to make over $13 million from 2010 onward. And he will receive an AFC Championship ring, even though he was inactive for the entire postseason.

But Kuper's career will sadly be defined as much by what could have been as what was. When he fractured his fibula, he was at the cusp of becoming a household name league-wide, and he was making a case to be the best guard in Broncos history.

This sport can create cruel turns of fortune, and few know that better than the Broncos' esteemed No. 73.

Facebook Comments

Let us know your thoughts. Comment below through Facebook, AOL, Hotmail or Yahoo accounts.