The Broncos are represented at the annual AFC-NFC Pro Bowl by Brian Griese, Tom Nalen, Trevor Pryce and Rod Smith.
Inconsistency in the Broncos’ new home
With a gleaming new stadium opening, Brian Griese fully healed from a shoulder injury and Terrell Davis another year removed from tearing two ligaments in his knee, big things were expected from the Broncos in 2001.
But what followed was a season in which the Broncos never found consistent form.
His injury was quickly forgotten by most who attended that game; about eight and a half hours after the Broncos wrapped up the 31-20 win over the New York Giants, the first of two jets hit the World Trade Center in New York City. The NFL postponed all Week 2 games, moving them to January.
After the one-week pause to mourn following the 9/11 attacks, the Broncos resumed without McCaffrey, and endured one of their more inconsistent seasons to date.
After a 2-0 start, the Broncos would not win consecutive games until the next season. The final 10 games were a perfect exchange of win, loss, win, loss, and despite a career season from wide receiver Rod Smith — 113 catches, 1,343 yards and 11 touchdowns — the Broncos finished 8-8.
Griese’s interception ratio spiked from one every 84 attempts in 2000 to one every 23.7 attempts in 2001. Davis could not find his old form and would announce his retirement the following year, his career cut short after just seven seasons. And at the end of the season, head coach Mike Shanahan considered taking the vacant position at the University of Florida, where he worked before coming to Denver in 1984, before deciding to return for the 2002 season.
Talent still abounded on the Broncos’ roster, but questions outnumbered answers at the end of one of the Broncos’ most frustrating seasons.