Since Sunday morning, we’ve had a question on the front page of this little site asking you, “Will the potential for snow during Monday night’s game have an impact on the contest?”
Sixty-nine percent of the 5,000-plus voters in this admittedly unscientific, non-Gallup poll say, “Yes.”
So you’re probably aware of what’s happened the last couple of times that snow has visited INVESCO Field at Mile High. Especially since it’s arrived on two of the last three occasions that ESPN parked its trucks underneath the stadium concourse to beam a prime-time game to all corners of the globe (the exception was in the season opener against Kansas City, and while Colorado weather can be wacky, it’s not usually to the point where snow falls on downtown Denver while it’s still officially summer).
I don’t mean to be a pessimist here –
“Stop,” the internal monologue says. (I always wished that my internal monologue sounded like John Facenda, but, unfortunately, it sounds like, well, me.) “Don’t fib to the readers. Your friends constantly inform you that you make Eeyore look like an optimist. C-3PO said ‘We’re doomed’ far less often than you. Remember reading about ‘Gloomy’ Gil Dobie as a kid? You grew up to be him.
“You say you’re a realist, but that’s just your defense mechanism. Face it. You’re a pessimist. Accept it. Be honest.”
Thanks. May I write now?
Anyhow, knowing this, these three paragraphs of facts:
While the Broncos have enjoyed many successful games in the snow — the 1984 Monday Night Football win over the Green Bay Packers, the infamous snowball game — also on MNF in 1985 against the San Francisco 49ers, a regular-season ending game against the San Diego Chargers in 1987, a 1997 win over the Carolina Panthers — who come from a place where ice storms happen far more frequently than snow ones — I can’t help but look at losses in 2002 and 2004, in the snow, on ESPN, which represent two of the most bitter defeats the Broncos endured in recent years.
But as something approximating the sun shines into the room in which I write these words, I have to point out this: that the Broncos won in frigid temperatures at Tennessee on Christmas Day 2004, in shivering rain against Washington last year, and on something approximating an ice rink in Buffalo last December. At home, the Broncos have also improved the last two years; after dropping five straight regular-season home games from 2002-04 in which the temperature was below 50 degrees, the Broncos have won their last three.
Oh, and in those snowy ESPN defeats, they wore their alternate orange jerseys. They’ve never been worn since, and won’t be donned tonight, either. Denver’s record on ESPN in its navy blues? A much better 3-1.
Let it snow? Might as well. After all, nothing says autumn in Colorado like a random snowfall just 72 hours after the temperature broke 80.