John Elway was known for coming in the clutch during his NFL career and he had to do it again in crunch time when he was trying to court Peyton Manning to the Denver Broncos in 2012.
Manning recalled to The Athletic on Tuesday that he and Elway, the Broncos’ president of football operations, traveled to Cherry Hills Country Club in Colorado to get a drink. Manning said he wasn’t wearing the proper attire to enter and it was Elway who took the hit.
“We pulled into Cherry Hills [Country Club] and I remember Elway said, ‘You can’t wear jeans here. Do you have any other pants?’ I said, ‘No. This all happened so fast. I just packed one little overnight bag. All I got is jeans.’ And he said, ‘That’s OK. It’s a $50 fine. I’ll pay the $50 fine.’ And all [director of playing personnel] Russell had on was like an athletic sweatsuit. So it cost John $100 to take us over to have a beer,” Manning told the outlet.
Manning said that he called his friend, wide receiver Brandon Stokley, to join him, Elway and coach John Fox at the club. Stokley said he was told that it was a no-jeans place and after first having apprehension about going, he decided to join them.
“I was at my house and I got a call, ‘Hey, come join us.’ I was like, ‘Eh.’ I didn’t know John [Elway], I didn’t know John Fox. But I said, ‘OK.’ I didn’t know what to wear. I was panicking and rushing to put something on. Cherry Hills Country Club, that’s a pretty fancy place.”
Stokley said he showed up in a suit, and Fox and Manning had jeans on.
Manning said: “He goes, ‘I thought you said no jeans.’ I said, ‘Yeah, we’re not supposed to, but I didn’t tell you to wear a suit.’”
Manning would eventually sign with the Broncos, and he would win one more Super Bowl with them before calling it quits for good.