Broncos anniversary: Top 10 free-agent signings

November 8, 2009

During the Broncos’ 50th season, The Gazette will take a look back at some of the more memorable moments, players, games and plays over the team’s history, counting down a top 10 list every game day during the season.

10. Howard Griffith, FB — Griffith was Mike Shanahan’s best fullback: A good receiver out of the backfield and the lead blocker for Terrell Davis’ 2000-yard season.

9. Neil Smith, DE — He was better with the Chiefs, but added leadership and some pass rush, winning two Super Bowls in his first two seasons in Denver.

8. Brian Dawkins, S — He is only seven games into his Broncos career, but this signing looks like a winner. His leadership is great and the 36-year-old is playing well.

7. Alfred Williams, DE — Williams gave an instant boost to the defense — getting 21.5 sacks his first two seasons — and was a starter on the Broncos’ first championship team.

6. Casey Wiegmann, C — Wiegmann was signed for depth, to a modest contract. Then Tom Nalen was lost for the 2008 season — and subsequently retired — and Wiegmann stepped in and made a Pro Bowl.

5. Jake Plummer, QB — He drove some fans nuts, but he did have a 40-18 record with Denver and led the team to an AFC Championship Game.

4. Bill Romanowski, LB — Love him or hate him, the Broncos got six very good seasons out of Romo. He never missed a game for Denver.

3. Mark Schlereth, G — Denver made a smart signing with Schlereth, a former Pro Bowl player with Washington. He ended up on the team’s 50th anniversary first team.

2. John Lynch, S — Lynch was supposed to be washed up when he came to Denver following neck surgery. He made four Pro Bowls in four years.

1. Ed McCaffrey, WR — The Broncos signed McCaffrey when he had 103 career catches over four seasons. He finished his career with 565 grabs and was a major contributor to two Super Bowl teams.

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