A Sudden Confluence

This post is from David Burman, a resident of St. Columba House

Denver is, for the most part, mad about its Broncos (that’s the Denver Broncos, the local football team) – and that, for me, has been one of the treasures of living in Denver this year. I am a dyed-in-the-wool, lifelong Broncos fan, because my dad’s family is from Laramie, Wyoming. I was there, an 8-year old glued to the TV, when John Elway and Terrell Davis led the Broncos to a long-awaited victory in the Super Bowl in 1998.

Lately, I have begun to wonder if the recent revelations about the dangers football poses to those who play (especially the concussions) would end my love of the game, but that has not happened. When you fall in love with a team, you can’t just undo it.

So to live in the city where the Broncos play for the first time is wonderful. Now when I go to work at a shelter for homeless youth on Monday morning, the residents there want to talk about the game on Sunday. I can strike up a conversation with strangers and acquaintances about the Broncos, and frequently I’ll hear people talking about the Broncos, their playoff chances, and (this has been the biggest question in Broncos country lately) whether Peyton Manning or Brock Osweiler should be the starting quarterback.

But I have not shared this love of the Broncos with my housemates, who are not Broncos fans (which makes sense; none of them are from Colorado). But this past Sunday, all of a sudden, there was a confluence of interest in our house. My housemate Andrew is a Miami Dolphins fan, and as a result has had little to cheer about for a long time – the Dolphins are generally bad or average, and this year has been no different.

Last Sunday the Dolphins finished their season by playing a game against the mighty, World Champion, New England Patriots. It was a game few gave the Dolphins a chance of winning, but I really hoped they did, primarily because if they did win, it would help the Broncos’ position in the upcoming playoffs by hurting the position of the Patriots.

Shockingly enough, after three fourths of the way through the game the Dolphins played the Patriots evenly, and the score was 10-10. Everywhere Broncos fans – me included – perked up. If the Dolphins actually managed to win, the Broncos would have an opportunity to steal away the Patriots’ top seed in the playoffs.

Miami’s much-criticized and long-suffering quarterback, Ryan Tannehill, led the team downfield as the end of the game approached, completing pass after pass against the Patriots’ tough defense, and then – a sudden boom – the Dolphins scored a touchdown!

The score was now 17-10, but I wasn’t too hopeful – the wondrous Patriots offense led by the great quarterback Tom Brady was about to get a chance to tie the game. But twice – twice! – Brady was sacked by Miami defenders before he could even throw a pass, and the Dolphins got the ball back quickly. After they scored a field goal, the game was over – a 20-10 victory for the Dolphins.

The impossible had happened! The Broncos now had a chance to win the top seed in the playoffs, and they did so by winning later in the day.

I told Andrew that he can where Miami Dolphins gear in Denver the rest of the year, because his beloved Dolphins had given our team a boost.

And that is how my housemate and I were suddenly united in our rooting interests.

Long may our common interest continue – until the day comes when the Broncos play the Dolphins in the playoffs.


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