Penny Parker On The Town: NFL catches flak from Broncos fans over Joe Flacco banners

August 28, 2013

The giant Joe Flacco photo hanging outside Sports Authority Field at Mile High (next to Peyton Manning‘s same-size photo) is creating a load of flak in Broncos Country.

What’s worse is that the Baltimore Ravens quarterback’s mug decorates much of downtown on banners that seem to be reproducing like rabbits. Make it stop, say fans on various websites and Facebook pages.

Flacco’s name and image are still sensitive subjects since the 2012 Super Bowl winners booted the Broncos out of the running when the Ravens beat the Broncos in double overtime during the playoffs last season. Flacco’s “Mile High Miracle” pass in the waning seconds of regulation sent the game into overtime. It still hurts.

But the agreement to plaster Flacco’s face all over the Mile High City was sealed between the NFL and the Broncos when the pro football honchos offered our city the coveted NFL season opener.

“The NFL equally promotes both teams as part of its annual Kickoff Game, and we are working closely with the league regarding our compliance to NFL guidelines for exterior signage and other promotional efforts for the game,” said Patrick Smyth, the Broncos executive director of media relations. “This is why fans may notice some promotional art outside Sports Authority Field at Mile High and around town that features both teams.”

That explanation is of little comfort to fans outraged by what they deem a “desecration” of our football field and downtown.

They took out their frustrations Tuesday all over websites, social media and on sports radio shows. One frustrated fan went so far as to craft a petition to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. The petition was posted on Sports Illustrated Audibles: It reads:

To: Roger Goodell, @nflcommish, National Football League

Take the Joe Flacco signage off my Mile High Stadium! Broncos Nation will not endure this detestable and audacious act. Who in their right mind thought that we would just let this fly?! We stand united against your unbearable Joe Flacco signage.

Sincerely, [Your name]

CBS4 sports anchor Vic Lombardi, a Denver-area native, went berserk, and crossed the line between objective reporting and acting on his passion for his hometown team. Lombardi was recorded on (ever heard of it?) vandalizing Flacco banners along the 16th Street Mall (

He used a Sharpie to draw mustaches on Flacco’s face, and then resorted to masking tape plastered across the offending banners.

“If you’re a Denver native, this is a crock of crap,” Lombardi told former Bronco Alfred “Big Al” Williams and Darren “D-Mac” McKee on The Drive radio show Tuesday afternoon on 104.3 The Fan. “The NFL is pushing us around. The mayor (Michael Hancock) is a big Broncos fan. He can’t be happy about this … come on!”

Lombardi’s boss, CBS4 news director Tim Wieland, said he was well aware of the sports anchor’s antics through posts on Twitter.

“If you know Vic, you know that he likes to get involved in the reporting,” Wieland said. “In this case, Vic’s intent was to have a little fun with a subject that’s clearly irritating to many Broncos fans.” But condoning vandalism? Really?

Even “Big Al” Williams couldn’t get on board with Lombardi’s actions.

“This is a bunch of nothing,” Williams said. “That stadium will be filled with 85 percent Broncos fans.” NBC is televising the season opener at 6:30 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 5 on 9News.

The Joe Flacco banner at Sports Authority Field at Mile High is drawing the ire of Broncos fans. (Sports Authority Field photo)

The Joe Flacco banner at Sports Authority Field at Mile High is drawing the ire of Broncos fans. (Sports Authority Field photo)


Fossil Trace GC gets top 10 nod in Forbes

Fossil Trace Golf Course in Golden is listed among the “10 most unusual U.S. golf courses,” according to “Forbes” magazine contributor Larry Olmsted.

The writer raves about course designer Jim Engh, calling him “one of my favorite golf architects and way underrated by the general public, though the industry holds him in high acclaim.”

Olmstead also notes Fossil Creek’s preservation of rustic mining equipment and the history lesson the course provides with prehistoric dinosaur tracks through holes 11 to 15 left some 64 million years ago. “Triceratops footprints have been well-marked next to the 12th green so golfers can take a look, and more fossils, plaster footprint casts, and ancient history are in the clubhouse,” Olmstead notes.

He forgets the great views the course offers from every direction, especially from holes No. 1 and 10, and the commune next to the 16th tee box.

Read about all 10 courses and Fossil Trace here.

The approach to No. 12 at Fossil Trace Golf Course with an old mining crane in the background. (Fossil Trace photo)

The approach to No. 12 at Fossil Trace Golf Course with an old mining crane in the background. (Fossil Trace photo)


PGA Tour is on the (golf) ball

The PGA Tour is not run by a slew of stooges.

Witness the television commercial already out touting the 2014 BMW Championships, part of the FedEx Cup playoff tournament series that will be played at Cherry Hills Country Club in Cherry Hills Village.

The advertisement features four of Denver’s best-known sports figures, from the Broncos: John Elway, Peyton Manning and John Lynch and ex-Denver Nuggets star Chauncey Billups (now with the Detroit Pistons but a Denver resident and native).

So Todd Helton and Joe Sakic are chopped liver?

The BMW Championship is the next to the last tournament of the FedEx Cup series that narrows the field to the final 30 that play at The TOUR Championship the following week. Next year’s BMW Championship will be played Sept. 4-7 at Cherry Hills. Tickets are already available online for the 2014 BMW Championship.

Check out the video at

Steuben’s has something to crow about

Steuben’s, the feel-good restaurant at 523 E. 17th Ave., was recently selected as one of America’s best chicken and waffles spot by Travel + Leisure magazine.

“Despite being mile-high, there’s a down-home essence at Steuben’s, from the old diner décor to the super-friendly staff,” the article says. “And chicken and waffles don’t get more classic than chef Brandon Biederman’s version. The meat is brined in buttermilk and seasoning for a day, then dredged in seasoned flour and fried to order. The waffles are traditional Belgian, served with a red-eye gravy made from Jim Beam bourbon, coffee and bacon. Afterward, waddle next door to sister restaurant Ace, with plenty of Ping-Pong tables.”

Check out the story at

Now for the rest of the story: Steuben’s only serves the chicken and waffles for brunch on Saturday and Sunday and as the Sunday dinner special. You can order Steuben’s popular fried chicken (with mashed potatoes gravy and a biscuit) any day of the week.

Another 9th Door

The Beauvallon building on Ninth and Lincoln has been a revolving door for restaurants since it opened. But that doesn’t seem to bother Bill Kennedy, owner of The 9th Door, 1808 Blake St., who will open another outpost in the eatery-challenged building.

The Spanish tapas restaurant is slated to open in October, according to a story on Check out the details:

Eavesdropping on a woman discussing the Flacco banners: “What if the Yankees put up a 40- foot picture of Big Papi (Red Sox slugger David Ortiz)? That would never happen.”

Did you hear that I have a new column, “Mile High Life,” in Colorado Community Media’s 17 weekly newspapers circling Denver? Be sure to like my Facebook page! Also, here’s where you go to get my column emailed to you Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. My email: Want to advertise your business here? Contact Trisha at

Comments are closed.

Leave a comment