DENVER — Dan Reeves, the second all-time winningest coach in Broncos history, died Saturday after a long battle with dementia.
He was 77.
His family released a statement to NFL Network.
"Legendary NFL player and coach Dan Reeves passed away early this morning, peacefully and surrounded by his loving family at his home in Atlanta, GA. He passed away at age 77 due to complications from a long illness. His legacy will continue through his many friends, players and fans as well as the rest of the NFL community. Arrangements are still to be determined."
Reeves helped the Broncos become the class of the AFC in the 1980s. He led the franchise to three Super Bowls, failing to win any, but creating a brand of excellence along with quarterback John Elway that made the Broncos a national draw.
The football world lost a heckuva coach and man today in Dan Reeves.
Dan was a winner and I owe a lot to him.
My heart goes out to Pam and the entire Reeves family. pic.twitter.com/d3cUk9ZWxT
— John Elway (@johnelway) January 1, 2022
Reeves ranks second among Broncos coaches in wins (110), trailing only Mike Shanahan, his former assistant. Both are Ring of Famers. Reeves entered in 2014.
Reeves returned Denver to its late 1970s glory. He posted 10 wins seven times and was a regular in the postseason, posting only one losing season during his Denver career from 1981-92. Those Broncos were known for tough defenses, and the athleticism and late-game magic of Elway, who arrived in 1983 via trade. With Elway fueling the charge, the Broncos won three AFC Conference titles.
Reeves delivered a 13-7 playoff record with the Broncos.
Reeves later coached the Giants and Falcons. He faced the Broncos in Super Bowl 33 with Atlanta, but fell short as Denver won back-to-back titles. Reeves participated in nine Super Bowls as a player and coach.
It's difficult to put into words how much Dan Reeves meant to me (and so many others). He was not only a great coach and leader, but he was also a great person. We will truly miss you, Dan. Our condolences to his wife Pam, Joe D & Dana, and the rest of the family. RIP Coach!!
— Steve Atwater (@SteveAtwater27) January 1, 2022
Reeves grew up on a farm in Georgia and attended college at South Carolina. He played seven seasons with the Dallas Cowboys, learning from Hall of Fame coach Tom Landry. As a rushing and receiving threat, Reeves led the league in touchdowns with 16 in 1966. He helped the Cowboys win Super Bowl VI in 1972.
An injury ended his NFL career, but launched a successful coaching run. Reeves posted a career record of 201-174-2, making him one of seven coaches with 200 victories.
One of the winningest coaches in NFL history, Coach Reeves set the foundation for the Broncos’ decade of dominance in the 1980s and championship tradition for years to come.
A statement from the Broncos on the passing of Dan Reeves: pic.twitter.com/gHcnqLqppq
— Denver Broncos (@Broncos) January 1, 2022