ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- In a letter posted on the team's website Tuesday morning, Denver Broncos president/CEO Joe Ellis thanked the team’s fans for their support this past season and said, in part, "there are no excuses for what went wrong."
In the letter, Ellis offered, “Make no mistake. We share your disappointment for not reaching our goals after a promising start to the season. There are no excuses for what went wrong, and all of us take full responsibility for our first losing record in seven years.’’
After a 3-1 start that included a dominant 41-17 victory over the Dallas Cowboys in Week 2, the Broncos crumbled following a Week 5 bye. They lost eight consecutive games -- the first eight-game losing streak since 1967 -- and finished 5-11, including Sunday's 27-24 home loss to the Kansas City Chiefs.
In his letter, Ellis noted the team will “continue to have the highest expectations on and off the field. That’s the standard created by Pat Bowlen, and our commitment is to protect the winning tradition that he’s established during his ownership of the Broncos.’’
The Broncos have now missed the playoffs in back to back seasons for the first time since 2009-2010. That was Josh McDaniels’ two seasons as head coach, and McDaniels was fired with four games remaining in the 2010 season.
John Elway was hired as the Broncos’ top football decision-maker after the 2010 season. The Broncos retained coach Vance Joseph, who just completed his first season on the job, but Joseph and Elway fired six assistant coaches Monday, including the team’s two longest-tenured assistants in assistant head coach/running backs Eric Studesville and wide receivers coach Tyke Tolbert.
"Personally, it’s important to note we cannot fall back on our past success. While expectations will not be lowered, there can never be assumptions or an entitled mentality from our organization," Ellis wrote.
The Broncos also announced Tuesday they would not raise ticket prices for the second consecutive season.