Photos of President of Football Operations/General Manager John Elway competing in the 2018 CoBank Colorado Senior Open golf tournament. (Photos by Ben Swanson)
A few days after playing in the qualifying round of the U.S. Senior Open at the Broadmoor's East Course, President of Football Operations/General Manager John Elway stuck to the links and played in the opening rounds of the Colorado Senior Open at Green Valley Ranch Golf Club. After Elway finished at four over par following two rounds, local media spoke to Elway about his days on the course and got his thoughts on his favorite golfers.*
"What went right for you yesterday?"
"You know what? I played good. I didn't finish well yesterday. It seems to be, I play 14 or 15 good holes every round, so I did it again today. I had four really poor holes, but other than that, 14 good holes. I've got to work on completing the round."
"What was the issue on the front nine?"
"Well, I had a shank in there. So when you get a shank — I don't know if you've ever had a shank, but it has a tendency to throw you off a little bit. So, yeah, it threw me off a little bit. I triple-[bogeyed] eight with a shank, hit it in the hazard. I had a tough time rallying but then played well on the back side to bring it back. You see what happens."
"What did you think of the course?"
"It's in great shape. The greens are really good, and they're putting really well, so it's really in great shape."
"We got you on 18. Was that the second or third shot that went into the bunker? Did you drop back there?"
"It was the third shot. I skulled that one, went into the back bunker, was able to hit a good bunker shot and it almost went in. Then I made the come-back, so I was able to survive it."
"Right now in the PGA, who's your favorite golfer to follow?"
"There's so many good players. Obviously I like to watch Tiger [Woods], because I like to watch him coming back. I hope that he makes that comeback. Obviously he's doing great right now. But there's so many good players, it's kind of week-to-week. Dustin Johnson, I've played a little bit with, so I like to see him play well too. But a lot of good players out there."
"When you talk about Tiger and his coming back from back surgery — Peyton, he was talking yesterday about how he can really relate. Obviously he's been there. You were there through Peyton's experience coming back from that. … What did you see from Peyton that you see Tiger may go through?"
"Obviously I don't know exactly what he went through, but I know any time a golfer has a tough time with his back, you know it's going to be tough. He's battled back for a long, long time, so it's nice to see that whatever was wrong seems to be fixed, because the mentality for him is already there. He's already a great player, and I think he's probably more motivated now than he's ever been. So hopefully he can continue to play well like he is."
"Talking about competitive, you're quite the competitor. I think that's a fair statement — in life, in football. Are you as competitive on the golf course?"
"Yeah, I am, and that's probably something that works against me. I think there's probably some bad shots I should let go a little bit more of than I do and just try to come back from the bad shots and see what happens. But I still like getting out there. It's fun for me to compete. It's really the only thing that I can still really compete at that I can't get hurt at. That's my new rule: I play things that can't get hurt at, and golf's one of them."
"What's the best club in the bag right now?"
"I've actually putted pretty well the last two days. I made some good putts and messed up on a couple little ones, but for the most part I putted really well, so I think that's kind of what saved me a little bit. My driver came on as time went on. The back side, I drove the ball a little bit better, but the putter's probably the one that saved me."
"Peyton Manning got to do the pro-am with Tiger yesterday. If you had your choice of any golfer all time, who would you like to play a round with? And where?"
"I always say if I had one last round, I'd play at Augusta, because that's a great place to play. … I've played with Tiger once before, but that was a long, long time ago, so I think if I had a choice I'd play with Tiger again."
"You had a little fan gallery out there following you. What did you think of that?"
"It's always fun. Those guys, I've known those guys for a long time and so it's nice to see them out there."
"Do crowds bother you on the golf course at all?"
"No, not really. You kind of get used to it. The good thing is I've played enough years up in Tahoe, and after 25 years up there with a lot of people and not really a golf crowd, you get used to it. I think that's what's kind of made me immune to crowds when it comes to golf."