Ask former teammates about John Elway, the quarterback, and you’re unlikely to find a negative response. He was respected as a player and a leader.
But when you analyze the NFL and Elway’s job as a general manager of the Denver Broncos, the truth has to be told. Even if you won rings together.
Mark Schlereth won two Super Bowls with Elway as a guard on the 1997 and 1998 Broncos. He has gone on to a successful career in the media. Like everyone else, Schlereth wonders if Elway is the right GM to turn around the Broncos.
Mark Schlereth doesn’t have faith in John Elway
On Fox Sports 1’s “Speak for Yourself”, Schlereth was critical of his former teammate.
.@MarkSchlereth goes in on John Elway and the Denver Broncos 🔥🏈— Speak For Yourself (@SFY) October 29, 2019
"Do I trust him to fix what's gone wrong? No! This football team lacks depth, they lack talent, they lack grit, they lack toughness. They haven't had an offensive line that's worth a squirt of urine in 5 years." pic.twitter.com/7hLXmqV8iu
Many people have held that opinion. Not many played with Elway. The full clip of Schlereth railing on the Broncos and Elway included the well-worn criticism of Elway failing to find a quarterback.
“How did he fix it in the first place? He found himself a unicorn: Peyton Manning,” Schlereth said. “That guy takes a dump, a rainbow swirl comes out.”
That’s not entirely fair. The 2015 Broncos won a Super Bowl with Manning posting a 67.9 passer rating. The Broncos won a Super Bowl that season in spite of bad quarterback play, after age and injury caught up to Manning. Elway deserves credit for building a team that could win a championship while dragging along a quarterback.
But Elway doesn’t get much credit for what has happened since.
Broncos struggling again
As the biggest name among all general managers, aside from perhaps Bill Belichick, Elway is a lightning rod. And even in Colorado, where Elway is revered for his exploits as a quarterback and his job as a GM leading up to Super Bowl 50, people have lost patience.
The Broncos are 2-6 and it might get much worse with quarterback Joe Flacco dealing with a herniated disc in his neck. He’s out for an indefinite period of time. Denver is on its way to a third straight losing season. The Broncos hadn’t even had two losing seasons in a row from 1972 through last season. Elway has missed on numerous draft picks and is left with a roster that simply isn’t good enough.
The Broncos are one of the NFL’s worst teams, and Elway has a lot of responsibility for that. Even his old teammates aren’t going to protect him.
– – – – – – –
More from Yahoo Sports: