Raised by his grandparents and later foster parents, Rick Upchurch had his share of ups and downs growing up, however there was no denying the love and support he received from his family and his community in Holland, Ohio. From his grandparents passing away, being held back in the 6th grade, getting his GED and going to junior college hours away from his hometown, Rick learned how to persevere.
The Broncos didn’t even have him on their radar in 1975, but after a Broncos assistant bet a steak dinner with then-Broncos GM & Head Coach John Randal that Rick would be the AFC Offensive Rookie of the Year, they drafted him in the 4th round. John lost the bet. But he won big with Rick, a guy who showed no fear as a return specialist and could also catch and run with the ball. Rick’s list of accolades is long. He’s one of only 29 NFL players on two All Decade Teams (1970 & 1980). A 5-time All Pro. A 4-time Pro Bowler. The Broncos 50th Anniversary Team. Broncos Ring of Famer. University of Minnesota Athletics Hall of Fame. Not to mention, he’s a darn good person with a great story who made countless Broncos fans yell and scream whenever his hands touched the football.