Jan 25 (Reuters) - Profile of the Denver Broncos, who play the Seattle Seahawks in the Super Bowl on Feb. 2.
Founded: 1959. The Broncos were charter members of the American Football League, starting play in 1960. They joined the National Football League when the NFL-AFL merged in 1970. The franchise won two Super Bowls in the late 1990s. They play at Sports Authority Field at Mile High in Denver.
AFC titles (season): 7 (1977, 1986, 1987, 1989, 1997, 1998, 2013).
Super Bowl titles: 2 (1997, 1998).
Head coach: John Fox. A former defensive back, Fox led the Carolina Panthers to the Super Bowl for the 2003 season. He moved to Denver in 2011, guiding the Broncos to three successive AFC West titles. He missed nearly a month with the team this season after undergoing open heart surgery in early November for aortic heart valve.
Starting quarterback: Peyton Manning. Won league most valuable player honors four times and the Super Bowl once during 14 years with the Indianapolis Colts. Following neck surgery in 2011, the 13-time All-Pro selection returned to football in 2012 with the Broncos and set records for most touchdown passes (55) and yards passing (5,477) in season in 2013. His brother is New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning.
Leading receiver: Demaryius Thomas. Caught 92 passes for 1,430 yards and 14 touchdowns during regular season.
Leading rusher: Knowshon Moreno. Rushed 241 times for 1,038 yards and 10 touchdowns during regular season.
Leading defenders: Linebacker Danny Trevathan, 87 solo tackles, two sacks and three interceptions. Defensive end Shaun Phillips, 10 sacks.
- The Broncos, who started playing in 1960, did not have a winning season until 1973.
- John Elway, the architect of the current Broncos team as executive vice president for football operations, led Denver to its only Super Bowl titles, for the 1997 and 1998 seasons.
- Running back Jon Keyworth released a record in 1977 called, "Make Those Miracles Happen"? It was not a hit.
- John Elway: He quarterbacked Denver to Super Bowl titles in his final two seasons, winning Super Bowl MVP honors for the 1998 season. A nine-time Pro Bowl selection during his 16-year career with the Broncos, he was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2004. He played in five Super Bowls and had one of the league's best winning percentage with a 148-82-1 record.
- Floyd Little: Known as "The Franchise", Little scored 43 touchdowns and at the time of his retirement was Denver's all-time leading rusher with 6,323 yards. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2010.
- Shannon Sharpe: The three-time Super Bowl champion (twice with Denver once with Baltimore, Sharpe won Pro Bowl honors eight times and was selected to the NFL 1990s All-Decade Team. The first NFL tight end to collect 10,000 yards receiving, he was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2011.
Team name and colors: The nickname Broncos, fitting for the team's Western location, was selected in a team-naming contest held in 1960. Colors: Navy blue, orange, white.
Most famous supporters: Trey Parker and Matt Stone, the creators of the animated sitcom South Park, who were born and raised in Colorado and in a 2007 episode introduced a new character, Jay Cutler, who was then quarterback of the Broncos.
City of Denver:
- Called the "Mile High City" because it is located one mile above sea level. The 13th step of the state capital building is exactly one mile high.
- Denver brews more beer than any other U.S. city.
- Denver claims the invention of the cheeseburger with the trademark for the name cheeseburger awarded in 1935.
- Colorado is the only U.S. state to turn down the Olympics. In 1976 the Winter Olympics were planned for Denver but 62 percent of state voters chose not to host the Olympics, because of the cost, pollution and population boom.
- In Denver's rarified air, golf balls go 10 percent further.
- There are 200 named peaks visible from Denver, including 32 that are 13,000 feet and above.
Previous Super Bowl appearances - Only the Pittsburgh Steelers and Dallas Cowboys, with eight, have been to more Super Bowls than the Denver Broncos, but success in the NFL championship game was a long time coming. The Broncos lost the big game four times before recording back-to-back wins in the 1997 and 1998 seasons. John Elway quarterbacked both victories, the Broncos defeating the Green Bay Packers 31-24 in San Diego and the Atlanta Falcons 34-19 in Miami. Denver's Terrell Davis, who rushed for three touchdowns, earned most valuable player honors for the Packers game and Elway received similar honors against the Falcons, passing for one touchdown and rushing for another.
- - 2013 regular season record: 13-3 won AFC West division
Week 1 - vs Baltimore Ravens, won 49-27
Week 2 - at New York Giants, won 41-23
Week 3 - vs Oakland Raiders, won 37-21
Week 4 - vs Philadelphia Eagles, won 52-20
Week 5 - at Dallas Cowboys, won 51-48
Week 6 - vs Jacksonville Jaguars, won 35-19
Week 7 - at Indianapolis Colts, lost 39-33
Week 8 - vs Washington Redskins, won 45-21
Week 9 - Bye Week
Week 10 - at San Diego Chargers, won 28-20
Week 11 - vs Kansas City Chiefs, won 27-17
Week 12 - at New England Patriots, lost 34-31*
Week 13 - at Kansas City Chiefs, won 35-28
Week 14 - vs Tennessee Titans, won 51-28
Week 15 - vs San Diego Chargers, lost 27-20
Week 16 - at Houston Texans, won 37-13
Week 17 - at Oakland Raiders, won 34-14
(*) Denotes overtime
AFC playoff seeding: 1
Path to the Super Bowl - First round bye; Beat San Diego Chargers 24-17 in the divisional round; Beat New England Patriots 26-16 in AFC Championship game
(Compiled by Gene Cherry; editing by Julian Linden)