With just under two weeks until the start of the 2015 season, the Broncos celebrated with the fourth annual Kickoff Luncheon at the UCHealth Training Center. (All photos by Eric Lars Bakke unless otherwise noted)
ENGLEWOOD, Colo.** – The Broncos hosted the fourth annual Kickoff Luncheon to benefit Denver Broncos charities Tuesday morning at the UCHealth Training Center.
Partners of the 'Be a Champion in the Community' initiative attended the luncheon that was presented by Arrow Electronics and US Bank in order to help raise money for the Broncos charities. The entire Broncos team was present at the event and each player was 'drafted' by partners that selected them to sit at their tables.
Broncos President and CEO Joe Ellis had an opportunity to open the event, which was emceed by Broncos alum Dave Logan, with a thank-you to the partners and team.
"We are very proud to play a small part in the positive impact these programs have on others and look forward to helping support them yet again this year," Ellis said.
Broncos' Owner Pat Bowlen was not able to attend as he continues to fight Alzheimer's, but Ellis spoke about Bowlen's founding principles and how they affect the culture of the Broncos and the Denver community.
"I can tell you the two of his principles that have guided his ownership for 31 years. Winning and doing things the right way are values that are very much present within his team today," Ellis said. "Now, in terms of winning, [EVP of Football Operations/General Manager] John Elway has done a great job of assembling a group of players who have helped this team to four consecutive division titles for the first time in franchise history.
"Talent aside, John and Head Coach [Gary] Kubiak have brought in some really good people. The efforts of our players representing this team in the community are extraordinary and I can't emphasize that enough. Several of these players do so much in our community that goes unnoticed. I just want to take this time to thank our players for being extraordinary ambassadors in our community."
Vice President of Community Development Cindy Kellogg then spoke to the crowd about the effects that the Broncos have on the community.
"We take very seriously in our organization the responsibility we have to maximize this extraordinary platform that we know we possess to yield the maximum positive influence in the community that we can," said Kellogg, "and for that I want to thank each of you here today for investing in our ongoing ability to make that impact."
Following her dialogue, Kellogg then presented a slideshow of the Broncos' work in the community. Following the slideshow, cornerback Chris Harris Jr., outside linebacker Von Miller, tight end Owen Daniels, safety David Bruton Jr. and wide receiver Demaryius Thomas were brought on stage to conduct a question and answer session with Logan.
The Broncos put a special focus on special teams during Tuesday's practice. (All photos by Ben Swanson, unless otherwise noted)