CANTON, Ohio — Von Miller, Chris Harris Jr. and Brandon McManus attended Saturday night’s Pro Football Hall of Fame enshrinement ceremony to support both Pat Bowlen and former cornerback Champ Bailey.
Both Miller and Harris were teammates with Bailey from 2011-13 and joined the Broncos while Bowlen still oversaw the team on a day-to-day basis.
“I think Mr. B, he took a great chance on me being a player in this league,” Harris said, “and I just saw his dedication every day as a rookie, him being there every day, meeting with 'Greek' [Director of Sports Medicine Steve Antonopulos] every morning and just seeing that he was all-in like a player, like us. He wanted to be in training camp like us, and that’s kind of how he took it. And seeing Champ, he instilled so much motivation and gave me so much confidence as a young player, so I definitely had to come out here and pay my respects to both of them.”
Miller, who said it was “incredible” to be able to witness Bowlen’s and Bailey’s enshrinement, flew back out to Canton from Denver with Harris and McManus just two days after the Broncos beat the Falcons in the Pro Football Hall of Fame game. The three players initially returned to Denver on Thursday night with their teammates.
“Man, it’s crazy,” Miller said. “This is my first time out here and we got to take the tour of the Hall of Fame and play in the Hall of Fame game. It was great. Every pro football player has dreams and aspirations of being here one day, so it was great to come experience it.”
And although McManus didn’t arrive in Denver until 2014, he said he believed it was still important for him to show his support for Bowlen, Bailey and the organization. McManus is one of the longest-tenured players on the team’s roster.
“I found it important for me to be here,” McManus said. “Denver really was my first real opportunity to play in the NFL, and I can’t thank Pat Bowlen and John Elway [enough] for reaching out and getting after me. I wanted to give back to the Bowlen family, and it’s been important to learn the winning tradition that he instilled.”