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Former Broncos' All-Pro RB Otis Armstrong Passes Away at Age 70

The Broncos announced the loss of one of their all-time great players.
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Otis Armstrong, a first-round pick of the Denver Broncos in 1973, passed away Wednesday, according to the team website.

Armstrong, 70, was one of many players drafted when John Ralston was head coach. The running back would go on to become one of the many key contributors to the Broncos' first Super Bowl appearance the 1978 NFL season.

Armstrong came along when Hall-of-Fame running back Floyd Little was still around and, in his second season with the team, led the NFL in rushing with 1,407 yards and yards-per-carry average of 5.3. In 1976, Armstrong again broke the 1,000-yard rushing mark, finishing with 1,008 for the season.

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For his career, Armstrong rushed for 4,453 yards in 96 games with 25 touchdowns. He also caught 131 passes for 1,302 yards and seven scores. Injuries caused him to miss 10 games in 1975 and four in 1977.

Armstrong was named to two Pro Bowls and was a first-team All-Pro in 1974. He ranks fourth in franchise history in rushing attempts and rushing yards.

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The 1973 first-rounder out of Purdue was like Hall-of-Fame running back Terrell Davis in the sense that he was a dominant running back when healthy. In fact, Armstrong may be one of the more under-appreciated Broncos of all time.

But make no mistake: Armstrong was one of many key players who transformed the Broncos from being a team that struggled to win games to one that posted plus-.500 seasons and made multiple playoff appearances.

Rest in peace to one of the all-time great Broncos, and thanks for the memories, Otis.


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