"As a proud native Coloradoan, Greek loved the Broncos and gave everything he had to the job, arriving most days before 4:30 a.m. and keeping that same passion throughout his entire career. We sincerely thank his wife Susan and the entire Antonopulos family for sharing Greek with us for so many years. From there, we went to Cheers bar and ran into some Denver people and had a couple cold ones. He is the teams 12th man. In Antonopulos' second season, the Broncos reached their first Super Bowl, a loss to the Dallas Cowboys. He took a year off from football, resuming play without an ACL for the remainder of his career. NFL.com keeps you up to date with all of the latest league news from around the NFL. He got $26.4 million without playing a down for the Colts last year 32 percent more than his first-year salary with the Broncos. He treated 983 players who've appeared in at least one playoff and regular-season game for the Denver Broncos. There are team physicians, such as head team physician Martin Boublik of Steadman Hawkins Clinic-Denver. Running back could be a sneaky priority need for the Denver Broncos. Its just a cool place., Oh boy, a couple of those. Tonight, we celebrated head athletic trainer Steve Antonopulos. Gotsis had yet to be treated by the man crucial to his draft selection and his successful knee rehabilitation, head athletic trainerSteve Antonopulos. Like Antonopulos, Garcia got his bachelors degree from Northern Colorado. However, Anthopoulos served as an advance scout for the Greek National Baseball Team for the . Our organization wishes him the very best in his retirement. San Diego: Head Athletic Trainer Steve Antonopulos glances at the Vince Lombardi Trophy in the locker during the post-game celebration. ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- After a career that spanned 45 years with the Denver Broncos, director of sports medicine Steve Antonopulos has retired. The Broncos announced on Monday, June 7, 2021, that Antonopulos will retire after more than three decades as the team's trainer. I am an early person, and I learned years ago I need some time by myself before anyone gets here. We congratulate Greek and thank him for a truly remarkable, special run with the Denver Broncos. Antonopulos called working for the Broncos a lifes dream., A lot of people say that, but it was the reality for me, he said. He is the only individual to be part of all eight Broncos Super Bowl runs. 2 / 24. Please check your email for a confirmation. "Steve has been an institution with the Broncos for the last 45 years and became one of the most respected athletic training professionals in all of sports," said team President and CEO Joe Ellis. 'Defend My Desk' How did Antonopulos survive so many regime changes? Connor McGovern had a hamstring problem. 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Visit NFL.com's transaction hub for a daily breakdown. Mercedes-Benz Stadium. We sincerely thank his wife Susan and the entire Antonopulos family for sharing Greek with us for so many years.. In Antonopulos second season, the Broncos reached their first Super Bowl, a loss to the Dallas Cowboys. We just really hit it off and it was an opportunity that I had always dreamed about.. He was a fixture on our sidelines for the greatest moments in team history, the first person running on the field to care for an injured player and the one who supported them through every step of their recovery. Broncos long time trainer Steve Greek Antonopulos retires, Horse Tracks: Potential Broncos Cap Casualties in 2023, 3 players the Broncos should consider cutting to make more cap room for the 2023 free agent class. Steve Antonopulos will go down as one of the best athletic trainers in the history of the NFL. The Broncos announced on Monday, June 7, 2021, that Antonopulos will retire after more than three decades as the team's trainer. The Broncos will name their training room after Antonopulos in a move CEO Joe Ellis called a no-brainer given his long run with the franchise. Elways competitive drive helped him work through the mental challenges of rehabilitation. Awesome was Antonopulos longevity in the often-unstable world of the NFL. Steve Antonopulos, known as "Greek," has retired from his position as athletic trainer for the Denver Broncos after 45 years with the team. Antonopulos, 72, whom most everyone with the team and in the league knows simply as "Greek," has been with the Broncos since 1976. I was blessed to be a part of the elation of that. During the season, Antonopulos would often arrive at the facility around 4 a.m. and stay as late as required. (Coach) Dan Reeves made the decision to have him drive to San Diego for the game. On August 3, the Broncos organization came together to celebrate 40 years of service by Greek. A motto for Antonopulos was Defend My Desk., When a new owner or coach was hired, he said: They come in and have 100 things going on and what they dont need is somebody trying to make an appointment and promote themselves. I never worked a day in my life because I loved what I was doing so much and the organization was so classy. He was the team's head trainer for 37 seasons and spent the past four seasons as the director of sports medicine. I woke him up. Kentucky's Will Levis, a likely top-10 pick in the 2023 NFL Draft, spoke Friday at the NFL Scouting Combine and -- in under 15 minutes -- presented himself as arguably the most self-assured QB in this year's class. Ill always be a Bronco.. He researched the previous seasons hamstring injury sustained by running back Otis Armstrong and put together a treatment/rehabilitation plan to present to Hurst. How did Antonopulos survive so many regime changes? I loved the job, loved the place and there would be only one position I would leave there for the Denver Broncos.. He told me after the fact he was going to take a half-hour (for the interview) and be on his way, Antonopulos said. The Raiders plan to place the franchise tag on running back Josh Jacobs if the sides cannot come to a deal on a long-term extension by Tuesday's deadline, NFL Network Insider Tom Pelissero reported Friday. We thought it would be (quick). He is believed to be the longest-tenured trainer with one team in NFL history, and Greek is the. In my mind -- like I told him the other day -- I don't think he's retired. And then Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City has always been one of my favorites. Once I get up to Denver and visit with the team doctors, they can check out my knee and do all of that, and then we can go from there. https://broncoswire.usatoday.com/2021/06/08/denver-broncos-news-steve-greek-antonopulos-retires-as-trainer/, 17 Broncos players set to become unrestricted free agents, 5 players Broncos might consider trading this offseason, 8 players Broncos should let walk during NFL free agency, 5 Broncos players who could become cap casualties this offseason, Broncos want to re-sign free agent LB Alex Singleton, Every time the Broncos have used a franchise tag in the past, Your California Privacy Rights/Privacy Policy. He was a fixture on our sidelines for the greatest moments in team history, the first person running on the field to care for an injured player and the one who supported them through every step of their recovery. After the 1980 season, he was elevated to head trainer and split his old salary in half to hire two assistants. He was a fixture on our sidelines for the greatest moments in team history, the first person running on the field to care for an injured player and the one who supported them through every step of their recovery. What is your favorite memory of the Broncos long-time head trainer? (photos via Broncos photo archive, unless noted) 1 / 24. Toward the end Elways ripped bicep. I thought I would be (at Fort Hays) my whole career, Antonopulos said. In this job, Ive always tried to give all I can as a father and grandfather, but its hard because your time is so confined, he said. Watch the Broncos tribute video to Greek, especially Gary Kubiaks words on how much Greek personally means to him: Steve 'Greek' Antonopulos celebrates 40 years of service with the Denver Broncos https://t.co/whCCXn6cFk. There is another player meeting from 3 to 4 p.m. Post practice treatments follow until we are done at approximately 6 p.m. On game day, Greek arrives very early as well. The Denver Post caught up with Steve Antonopulos, and during the interview, Antonopulos explained his reasoning behind his retirement. As a proud native Coloradoan, Greek loved the Broncos and gave everything he had to the job, arriving most days before 4:30 a.m. and keeping that same passion throughout his entire career. For 45 years, athletic trainer Steve Greek Antonopulos has been the epitome of what the Denver Broncos are all about.Greek, there arent words to describe the impact youve had on our organization, and we wish you nothing but the very best in retirement!#ThankYouGreek pic.twitter.com/HAKN6t7S7P. I just think Pat trusted Greek more than any other employee he ever had working for him, Ellis said. During the past four years, Antonopulos oversaw the Broncos training and medical treatment from on high, leaving Vince Garcia in charge of the day-to-day responsibilities. What a run. Their grandparents often move better in that instant. In addition to praising fifth-year veteran Jarek Crick, Kubiak also said that the team expectsa lot of Adam Gotsis, who is less than ten months away from tearing his anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in his left knee. When I see a player incurring a major injury withering in pain on the field, I am seeing most the emotional agony and fear of uncertainty. He had the fingernail on his thumb totally torn off and was bleeding all over the place. The following browsers are supported: Chrome, Edge (v80 and later), Firefox and Safari. Steve Greek Antonopulos, the only person to work for the Broncos during each of their eight Super Bowl appearances, announced Monday he is retiring after 45 seasons of service. Antonopulos and his wife, Susan, have a blended family of five kids and seven grandkids and will split their time between homes in Limon., and Tucson, Ariz., and driving their RV to visit family. At the moment, Im just completely thrilled to be a Denver Bronco and I cant wait to get up there. Antonopulos, whose office was routinely owner Pat Bowlen's first stop each morning when Bowlen arrived to work, is the longest-tenured employee in the franchise's history and is the only employee to have been with the Broncos for each of the team's eight Super Bowl trips. The doctor that gave him the physical was Arthur Pappas, one of the Red Sox owners, and he took us over to Fenway Park and I still have the picture of John and myself at home plate. pic.twitter.com/QngbUDNhEI. Their bones, cartilage, and ligaments bear theburden of these familial expectations. Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott's cap hit might be rising in 2023, but owner Jerry Jones believes his quarterback has the ability to bridge the gap in any talent the roster might lose because of it. His 43 years with the Broncos is believed to be the longest tenure by an athletic trainer with one NFL team. Or does the salary serve as a salve to those wounds? The fans are incredible and it was the first of the modern stadiums in the old days. Antonopulos, 72, has worked with the Broncos for nearly 50 years, making his the longest career with one team in NFL history. Sign up for our newsletter and get every update delivered to your inbox! Call 1-800-GAMBLER. It is highly recommended that you use the latest versions of a supported browser in order to receive an optimal viewing experience. Antonopulos joined the Broncos as an assistant trainer in 1976, became head athletic trainer in 1981 and was promoted to the role of director of sports medicine in 2016. My wife deserves this and we need to move on, Antonopulos said in a phone interview Sunday with The Denver Post. Denver Broncos trainer Steve "Greek" Antonopulos has retired after 45 years with the franchise, the team announced Monday. Your login session has expired. He was obviously an astute trainer, but also an arrive-early, leave-late, stay-in-his-lane employee. NFL+ gives you the freedom to watch LIVE out-of-market preseason games, LIVE local and primetime regular season and postseason games on your phone or tablet, the best NFL programming on-demand, and MORE! Their athletic body movements express their identity. More Videos The 2023 NFL Combine is underway. Six of Pat Bowlen's children and presenter Steve Antonopulos at the longtime Broncos owner's inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2019. We always worked with Craig Hospital and the concussion experts and developed our protocols, which are similar to some that are used today. You'll now receive the top Broncos Wire stories each day directly in your inbox. Trainer Antonopulos, a Broncos' 'fixture,' retires, The future of the NFL combine: Is there really a chance it could end forever? And he played the whole game. After the 1980 season, he was elevated to head trainer and split his old salary in half to hire two assistants. One moment they move with extraordinary grace, quickness, and power. Alabama quarterback Bryce Young, whose size has been a matter of conjecture in the run-up to the 2023 NFL Scouting Combine, officially measured in at 5-foot-10 1/8 and 204 pounds on Saturday. Commanders wide receiver Jahan Dotson is "fired up" to work with Washington's new offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy. With unmatched dedication and loyalty to the Broncos, Greek became a trusted confidant for so many coaches, staff members and especially Pat Bowlen. Athletic trainers have one of the more important jobs on a professional sports team, especially in the NFL. Another option for Fire TV is to have the app delivered directly to your Fire TV through Amazon. He arrived most days at 4:30 a.m. and was often the last to leave team headquarters at night. Even before taking his first snap with the Broncos, he tore his left knees ACL in high school. A motto for Antonopulos was Defend My Desk., When a new owner or coach was hired, he said: They come in and have 100 things going on and what they dont need is somebody trying to make an appointment and promote themselves. ", Broncos coach Vic Fangio said following Monday's OTA practice: "45 years of service to one organization is unheard of in the NFL, and that speaks volumes to his competency and the value he brought to this organization over such a long period of time.". A good trainers room is filled with the mundane, bathed in the light of here-and-now reality. The best thing is stay in your domain, stay at your desk and work your rear end off.. It is their livelihood, and it hurts to see them be injured and not be able to perform. Adhesive bandages, electrodes, ice bags, and kinesiology tape. Greek is ever present when scary injuries occur, such as the incident with defensive end Derek Wolfe in the preseason game against the Seattle Seahawks at CenturyLink Field on August 17, 2013. A look at Steve "Greek" Antonopulos' 41 years as the Broncos' head athletic trainer. Included in the Broncos' draft room is trainer Steve "Greek" Antonopulos, who is working his 41st NFL Draft. I told him that, and he said. The award is given annually to a NFL trainer who best exemplifies a long-term commitment to the NFL, as well as exemplary performance. I always thought that might zing me one day.. We certainly wouldnt have gone to Cheers had we known it would take that long. It's spanned 900. According to the organization, Antonopulos' 45-year tenure is. The fans are incredible and it was the first of the modern stadiums in the old days. The Drive was so special. Ill see you in the morning. And that morning, we went in and he looked at me, and we just lost it. Aftersigning his $24.5 million contract with the Chicago Bears during the offseason,the NFL tweeted this about Trevathan: Knee injury.Knee injury.Knee injury.Big contract? "the Greek" and considered by many of his peers as tops in his profession, has worked for coaches Red Miller, Dan Reeves, Wade Phillips and Mike Shanahan as the Bronco. "It didn't matter if they were a Hall of Famer or an undrafted rookie -- his standard never changed. Former Broncos coach Gary Kubiak, who arrived to the Broncos as a rookie . We had to put him on injured reserve because he couldnt travel. His career is still going as the team's director of sports medicine. "Steve has been an institution with the Broncos for the last 45 years and became one of the most respected athletic training professionals in all of sports," Broncos president and CEO Joe Ellis said in a statement. 2023 NFL Scouting Combine results: Defensive linemen and linebackers. It was one of the hardest decisions I ever had to make. Antonopulos applied for the job and Hurst reached out to have breakfast in Denver when Fort Hays was coming through town between basketball games at Northern Colorado and Southern Colorado (now CSU-Pueblo). Whether movers in Fort Collins are helping you Broncos trainer Steve Greek Antonopulos, Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window), Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window), Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window), Broncos trainer Steve Greek Antonopulos retires after 45 seasons with franchise, As Broncos wrap up stay at NFL Combine, busy offseason of change churns toward free agency, draft, Broncos check in No. Those things are unbelievable and the number of great people and great minds of technology was phenomenal with what you can do for the medical care of football players., Without question, it was our second year here (1984) and he had to go in the offseason to Boston for a Lloyds of London insurance policy. All three are full training camp participants. Repeated selections of injured players shows the teams confidence in Greeks abilityto assess and treat injured players. Antonopulos graduated from Northern Colorado with bachelors and masters degrees and was working as the head trainer and a physical education teacher at Fort Hays (Kan.) State in 1976 when a Johnson & Johnson representative told him about an opening to be Hursts only assistant. He leaves big shoes to fill at the organization. Antonopulos spent 45 years with the Denver Broncos and was the athletic trainer to over 1,500 NFL players. Antonopulos started with the Broncos as an assistant athletic trainer in 1976, became the team's director of rehabilitation in 1979 and was hired as Denver's head athletic trainer in 1980. Not a member? They required him to go there for a physical. Jiminy Christmas, Im humbled; what an awesome thing, he said. Antonopulos was the longest-tenured employee at the franchise. Few peoplenoticed that Smyth also tweeted this on the first day of the NFL draft: https://broncoswire.usatoday.com/2016/08/17/steve-greek-antonopulos-is-the-broncos-12th-man/, Greek is nothing short of a consummate professional, reconstructive techniques were not available for Elway, 17 Broncos players set to become unrestricted free agents, 5 players Broncos might consider trading this offseason, 8 players Broncos should let walk during NFL free agency, 5 Broncos players who could become cap casualties this offseason, Broncos want to re-sign free agent LB Alex Singleton, Every time the Broncos have used a franchise tag in the past, Your California Privacy Rights/Privacy Policy. Greeks retirement is effective immediately. Greeks success there was evident as TD would go on to dominate the second half and lead Denver to its first Super Bowl championship. You won't want to miss a moment of the 2022 season! #NGWSD. https://t.co/2uuh4JmP6H#ThankYouGreek pic.twitter.com/VljaBUgaTn, Probably the most loyal employee the team has had and will ever have, Broncos president/CEO Joe Ellis told Ryan OHalloran of The Denver Post. In the playoffs after the 1986 season, the Broncos traveled to Cleveland to win the AFC championship game in overtime, highlighted by The Drive to end regulation. Antonopulos applied for the job and Hurst reached out to have breakfast in Denver when Fort Hays was coming through town between basketball games at Northern Colorado and Southern Colorado (now CSU-Pueblo). The Denver Broncos have leaned toward acquiring injured players during the offseason.Three of the top five draft picks had injuries that prevent them for full athletic participation in the rookie mini camp on May 6-8. Antonopulos, 72, whom most everyone with the team and in the league knows simply as "Greek," has been with the Broncos since 1976. Veteran free agentRussell Okung, the starting left tackle, was signed during the offseason while recovering from shoulder surgery. Five hours later, he was driving me 80 miles an hour down I-25 so I could get to the basketball game that night. I was making good money on the highway and going to college. Of . Vince Garcia, Denvers head athletic trainer, will presumably be a strong candidate to replace Greek. Greek does sustained hard work with players that benefits in indirect ways. "Greek" is in his 41st year with the #Broncos! As a proud native Coloradoan, Greek loved the Broncos and gave everything he had to the job, arriving most days before 4:30 a.m. and keeping that same passion throughout his entire career. Sign up for the Broncos Wire newsletter to get our top stories in your inbox every morning. 13655 Broncos Parkway Englewood, CO 80112. Before the 2020 season, Steve told John Elway that the 2020-2021 season would be his final one as an athletic trainer. A fellow trainer at Fort Hays was Jim Gillen, who later became the head athletic trainer for the Denver Nuggets. But athletic trainers, as well as strength and conditioning coaches, also seem to be the first staff members to be blamed when an NFL team suffers numerous injuries. And these team doctors, for licensed medical doctors they are, can earn in the range of $200,000 and $512,500 per year. The elation and what historically happened there for the Broncos was unbelievable., The old Kingdome in Seattle was a great place because of the crowd noise and it was a good place to travel. Antonopulos, 72, was a constant factor in the Broncos long run of success over the last 4+ decades treating and working with every single player Denver employed over those years. On April 28, moments after the selection of Gotsis, the Broncos draft headquarters was ecstatic, as tweeted by public relations vice president Patrick Smyth: Broncos GM John Elway, HC Gary Kubiak & DL coach Bill Kollar celebrate selection of DT Adam Gotsis in 2nd rd. His physical was first thing in the morning. Of course, Greek does not do this single-handedly. Greek in his own words,as told to the Board of Certification for Athletic Trainers: The worst part of the job is seeing players devastated by being injured. My wife deserves this and we need to move on, Antonopulos said in a phone interview Sunday with The Denver Post. He is believed to be the longest-tenured trainer with one team in NFL history, and Greek is the only person to be a part of all eight Broncos Super Bowl appearances. I dont have an exact set deadline on when Im coming back. Broncos' Athletic Trainer Steve "Greek" Antonopulos is retiring after 45 seasons with the team. Georgia quarterback Stetson Bennett spoke with media members on Friday for the first time since his arrest for public intoxication in late January. Broncos director of sports medicine Steve Antonopulos has been selected by the family of owner Pat Bowlen to present him at the Pro Football Hall of Fame induction ceremony Aug. 3 in Canton, Ohio. In Antonopulos second season, the Broncos reached their first Super Bowl, a loss to the Dallas Cowboys. From Left to Right: Dustin Little, Josh Hartman, Steve Antonopulos, Michael Sundeen, and Billy-Joe Voltaire. Its just a cool place., Oh boy, a couple of those. Genuine compassiondoes not stokepipe dreams but conveys the everyday dignity owed to any man, especially for the players attempting to secure a livelihood for their families to leap from ongoing poverty to sustained prosperity. During his tenure, Antonopulos picked up the following accolades: NATA Most Distinguished Athletic Trainer Award, The National Athletic Trainers Association Athletic Trainer Service Award and the NFL Athletic Training Staff of the Year Award. We certainly wouldnt have gone to Cheers had we known it would take that long. I was blessed to be a part of the elation of that. He was special the way he handled it., The continued advancement of therapeutic exercises and the concussion protocols and the NFL hiring medical liaisons has been crucial in advancement of doing things the right way. The Broncos will name their training room after Antonopulos. Greeks relationship with him was very personal he helped Pat on a lot of different matters, but he was very helpful giving Pat help throughout the season on where his team was at and it was an honest assessment at all times, which was important to Pat.. After the 1980 season, he was elevated to head trainer and split his old salary in half to hire two assistants. In the playoffs after the 1986 season, the Broncos traveled to Cleveland to win the AFC championship game in overtime, highlighted by The Drive to end regulation. but it can also be stressful. Jaguars won't spend big, but here are five players they could target in free agency, The most memorable pre-NFL draft workouts ever: Coaches, scouts, execs make their picks, 2023 NFL franchise tag tracker: Raiders tag Josh Jacobs, the NFL's rushing leader. I never worked a day in my life because I loved what I was doing so much and the organization was so classy. pic.twitter.com/uwM5i7YAAm. It didn't matter if they were a Hall of Famer or an undrafted rookie -- his standard never changed. Athletic trainers are the first on the field when an NFL player is injured, and in the case of a serious injury, they have to use quick decision-making to treat the player immediately. I have always respected the fact that Steve is the kind of person that will look you in the eye and tell you what he is thinking and commit to his word. What a run. > Above video: Steve Antonopulos introduces Pat Bowlen at NFL Hall of Fame induction ceremony. Scissors, tape remover, whirlpools, ultrasound gel, and treatment tables. Notifications can be turned off anytime in the browser settings. My philosophy was if you do your job and do a good job, theyll get to you. He worked under three owners and 10 head coaches and was a part of 22 playoff teams and three Super Bowl champions. Ryan OHalloran covered the Broncos for The Post from 2018-22 and has covered the NFL since 2004. Broncos trainer Steve "Greek" Antonopulos retires after 45 seasons with franchise - The Denver Post Sports NFL Denver Broncos News News Based on facts, either observed and verified directly by. Please also read our Privacy Notice and Terms of Use, which became effective December 20, 2019. After Greeks retirement was announced, team president/CEO Joe Ellis released the following statement: Steve has been an institution with the Broncos for the last 45 years and became one of the most respected athletic training professionals in all of sports. @Broncos celebrating head trainer Steve "Greek" Antonopulos tonight. The one other was (running back) Rob Lytle back in the day. There are a hundred athletic trainers currently employed in the NFL and the average salary for those trainers is about $75,000, a figure that can rise to $100,000 depending on experience. Former Broncos coach Gary Kubiak, who arrived to the Broncos as a rookie quarterback in 1983 and spent well over two decades with the franchise himself, has joked that Antonopulos was with the Broncos before the orange and blue in the uniforms.

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