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Mike Downey

It's Another Long Drive, With a Different Turn, for Broncos

January 25, 1987|Mike Downey

"Ninety-eight yards! John Elway must take the Denver Broncos 98 yards! Time is running out here at Super Bowl XXI! The New York Giants are winning! Less than a minute remains! The Broncos have the ball on their two! Elway has to take them the length of the field! It's Cleveland all over again!

"He takes the snap from center! Drops back! Looks! He's passing from out of his own end zone! Complete! Steve Watson's got it over the middle at the 12! First down, Denver!

"Clock's still running! Elway, back to pass again! Lawrence Taylor's after him! Elway's scrambling! Taylor's after him! Elway's scrambling! Oh! Taylor picks him up and throws him through the goal posts! Ow!

"The referee spots the ball where Elway was in the grasp, at the six! Elway appears to be all right! He comes down from the crowd and rejoins the Bronco huddle! The courage this young man shows!

"Second down! Forty-nine seconds remaining! Elway back to pass! No! Draw play to Sammy Winder! Winder follows blocks by Billy Bryan and Mark Cooper for a gain of 12 to the Denver 18! Lawrence Taylor punches the New York down linemen in the helmets and tells them to play better or else!

"Third and four! Clock's still running! Thirty-nine, 38, 37. . . . Broncos only have one timeout left! Big play here! Elway back to pass! Looking for Clarence Kay! The big tight end's open over the middle! Oh! Carl Banks comes out of nowhere and strips Kay not only of the ball, but of his jersey, pants and jock! Oh, my, these Giant linebackers are tough!

"Fourth down now! Broncos at their 18! The crowd here at the Rose Bowl is in an uproar! Denver's got to go for it! The clock is stopped with 33 seconds left to play here in Super Bowl XXI! Remember to stay tuned immediately after the game for postgame interviews, followed by '60 Minutes,' as Mike Wallace reduces a Girl Scout to tears for an illegal cookie scam! That's coming up on CBS, right after this game!

"OK! Fourth down! It's now or never for the Denver Broncos! Elway! Shotgun formation! Looking! Looking! Vance Johnson's got a couple of steps on his man down the sideline! Elway lobs it out there! Johnson's got to come back for it! Elvis Patterson goes up with him! It's complete! The ball lands right on top of Vance Johnson's haircut and stays there! What a catch! Bronco first down on their 49 as Johnson steps out of bounds, the ball still on top of his head!

"This crowd has come alive now! Elway and Johnson embrace! They high-five! They slap each other on the butts! They exchange phone numbers! But they still have to cover 51 more yards! Only 26 seconds remaining!

"Elway takes the snap! He's got Orson Mobley in Giant territory! Mobley to the 45! To the 40! Oh! Harry Carson dumps a helmet full of Gatorade on him at the 37! Flag down on the play! Carson's going to get 15 yards tacked on for illegal use of a refreshment! This crowd is going crazy!

"Broncos at the 22! Penalty stops the clock! They still haven't used their last timeout, remember! Joe Collier wakes Coach Dan Reeves and reminds him of that!

"Elway takes the snap! Quarterback draw! Oh! Jim Burt knocks him flat at the 20, then kicks a couple of Elway's teeth out, leaving him with only 57 teeth in his mouth! Man, this Giant defense is tough!

"Denver uses its last timeout! Eleven seconds remaining! This is a very exciting finish to this football game, and speaking of exciting finishes, Angela Lansbury investigates the alleged biting of her mailman by a cocker spaniel on 'Murder, She Wrote,' later tonight on CBS!

"Ready to resume play now! The Denver Broncos, going for broke! The New York Giants, digging in! George Martin is helped into his stance, because he's old!

"Snap from center! Elway! Trying to find a man open! Taylor chases him out of the pocket! Taylor is carrying a gun and a tire iron! Man, is this New York defense tough! Elway scrambles! Can't find anybody! He's running for it! Elway across the 10! Across the 5! Leonard Marshall zeroing in on him!

"Oh! Marshall is hit with a snowball from out of the crowd! That old Denver trick! Just like the 49er game! Somebody must have kept it frozen in a Styrofoam cooler for just this moment!

"I don't think the officials saw it! Elway tiptoes along the sideline! Three, 2, 1 . . . touchdown!

"He's done it! John Elway has done it! He's taken the Denver Broncos 98 yards! These Denver fans are delirious! They're storming the field! They're painting the field orange! They're painting Tom Jackson's hair orange! They're painting Karl Mecklenburg's hair orange! Wait a minute, Karl Mecklenburg's hair already is orange! They're painting Rich Karlis' foot orange! They're dumping a bucket of Tang on Bill Parcells' head!

"What a scene! Bronco owner Pat Bowlen is riding his bicycle up and down the field, popping wheelies! Keith Bishop is filming it with a mini-cam! Vance Johnson is painting it! Lawrence Taylor is strangling Giant linebacker Gary Reasons, screaming: 'Where were you? Where were you?' The Giants are certainly taking this touchdown hard!

"Well, that's about it from Super Bowl XXI in Pasadena, where the Denver Broncos have just driven 98 yards to finally score a touchdown before losing to the New York Giants, 31-10. Stay tuned for '60 Minutes,' as Ed Bradley sneaks up and dumps a Gatorade bucket on Diane Sawyer! So long, everybody!"

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