Why John Elway never liked that loser Terry Bradshaw

That clip is from ESPN's next 30 for 30 feature, which covers the storied 1983 Draft and is titled Elway to Marino.

Bradshaw didn't let up from there. In the January 1990 leadup to Elway's third Super Bowl thrashing, at the hands of the Niners, he had the following to say:

He's been babied, and that's the bottom line. He hasn't won three Super Bowls (as Montana has), that's the first thing I think about. And he's too inconsistent, for whatever reason. I think things bother John more than they bother Joe - you know, candy bars and stuff like that. He's got to get a little tougher emotionally, a little tougher mentally.

He's making $2 million a year. Hell, things don't bother you when you're making $2 million a year. Wait until you get out and have to get a job. It'll bother you then. You have to get tougher.

John's problem is, he's been babied - you know, babied by the city (of Denver) until this year, babied by the coach a little bit. It's just too easy, and you know what I went through in Pittsburgh. Well, there's nothing worse than just getting hammered. You fight that stuff. I think John's got to get tougher.

Elway's response:

He has been bashing me since I came into the league. He doesn't like the money I make. He can stick it in his ear.

But eight years later, with John on the cusp of his first championship, against the Packers, Bradshaw finally struck a conciliatory tone:

I was a quarterback constantly ridiculed, constantly questioned. Even when we won, it was because of everybody else. I had a chip on my shoulder.

That led to an emotional outburst on my part. I wanted to be thought of the same way as Elway, the same way as [Roger] Staubach. It was a huge mistake.

John said I was jealous. He was right. I still am. I wish I had all that money and hair. I wish I could ski and play golf like he can.

Well, sort of...

If I have a best friend playing in the NFL today, it's Brett Favre. But, in my heart of hearts, I don't want John Elway to join Jim Kelly as the only quarterbacks to lose four Super Bowls.

John had the last laugh though, as guess who was tasked with handing Elway the Lombardi Trophy following Denver's dismantling of the Falcons in SB 33 for their second straight title?

That's right, it was Bradshaw.

Meanwhile, in an article about the 30 for 30 piece on the team's official site, there's this fascinating nugget:

For example, did you know that the San Francisco 49ers briefly considered including quarterback Joe Montana — just 15 months removed from Super Bowl win — in a trade for Elway?

“It’s crazy that that was even a thought,” said Elway, who spent two hours talking with the interview crew at the Broncos’ Dove Valley headquarters back in February. “To me, it would have been a good fit. I would have loved to have been able to play for them, but looking back 30 years later, that would have been a tough situation stepping into (laughs).”

Fitting that Montana gets brought into the conversation, because with the supporting casts of those 70s Steelers, or those 80s Niners, Elway might have won six Super Bowls...


P.S. GFY, Bradshaw. Still.

Doug is IAOFM’s resident newsman and spelling czar. Follow him on Twitter @IAOFM

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