The Brazen Hypocrisy of John Elway Wanting to "Take the Politics Out of Football”

The Brazen Hypocrisy of John Elway Wanting to "Take the Politics Out of Football”
Twitter / Peter Marcus
As the traditionally military-friendly National Football League finds itself in an existential crisis with players and some coaches participating in the #TakeAKnee movement, which was inspired by President Trump's "son of a bitch" comment last weekend, John Elway decided to offer his two cents on the debate.

During a weekly interview published on the Broncos' website, Elway, the general manager of the team, called last weekend's demonstrations "a good show of unity," but underscored his real thoughts on the matter by also saying that he wants to "take the politics out of football."

Excuse us, Mr. Elway, but that's ridiculous coming from you.

Elway has been a staunch supporter of conservative causes, and has even utilized the Broncos name to achieve those ends.

In March, we told you how Elway sent a letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee — with the Broncos logo emblazoned across the letterhead — in support of then-nominee for the Supreme Court Neil Gorsuch.

"Neil is a big Denver Broncos fan, and I can tell you that I'm a big fan of his," Elway wrote.

click to enlarge TWITTER / PETER MARCUS
Twitter / Peter Marcus
Awkwardly, the Broncos' vice president of public and community relations sent out a tweet shortly thereafter distancing the Broncos from Elway's letter.

But it's not like the letter in support of Gorsuch was Elway's only foray into politics.

Last year, Westword writer Alan Prendergast made that abundantly clear in his piece, "John Elway's Political Ads Raise Hackles, Questions in Colorado." The ads included his opposition to progressive causes like single-payer health care in Colorado and raising the minimum wage.

But the ultimate irony of Elway's statement about separating politics and football this week? He's clearly saying one thing and doing another. Hey, Mr. General Manager, you're starting to sound like a politician.
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Chris Walker is a freelancer and former staff writer at Westword. Before moving to the Mile High City he spent two years bicycling across Eurasia, during which he wrote feature stories for VICE, NPR, Forbes, and The Atlantic. Read more of Chris's feature work and view his portfolio here.
Contact: Chris Walker