ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — The late Demaryius Thomas, who earned five Pro Bowl selections and won one Super Bowl with the Broncos, will be posthumously inducted as a member of the Colorado Sports Hall of Fame’s Class of 2023, it was announced Tuesday.
He and the rest of the class will be enshrined on April 26 during the Colorado Sports Hall of Fame’s 58th annual banquet.
Thomas, who died in December of 2021, spent more than nine seasons in Denver with the Broncos and became one of the franchise’s most-beloved figures for his work on and off the field.
After joining the team as a first-round draft choice in 2010, Thomas made a name for himself early in his career during Denver’s upset over the Steelers in the 2011 playoffs. In overtime, Thomas caught a pass over the middle and sprinted down the sideline for an 80-yard touchdown to win the game via what may be the most electric play to ever occur at Empower Field at Mile High.
In the months that followed, the Broncos signed Hall of Fame quarterback Peyton Manning in free agency, which further propelled Thomas’ career. That year, Thomas earned his first of five consecutive Pro Bowl selections, and alongside Manning, he would only improve. In 2013, Manning led Denver to rewrite NFL record books with the most productive offense of all time, and Thomas was a key part of it, as he tied a franchise record for touchdown catches in a single season.
The next year, Thomas set more franchise records, with 226 receiving yards in a single game and 1,619 receiving yards in a season. He also had the honor of catching Manning’s 509th career passing touchdown, which set an NFL record at the time.
In Manning’s final season, Thomas caught 105 passes for more than 1,304 receiving yards en route to the franchise’s third Super Bowl victory. A year later, he still crossed the 1,000-yard mark and made a Pro Bowl as Denver transitioned to the post-Manning era with quarterback Trevor Siemian.
Thomas finished his career in Denver as one of the best receivers in franchise history. In addition to his memorable plays, single-game and single-season records, Thomas is second only to Rod Smith in career receiving yards and career touchdowns.
Thomas is joined by former Nuggets head coach George Karl, former vice president of the U.S. Olympic Committee Evie Dennis, former University of Northern Colorado football star Vincent Jackson and former U.S. Olympic Skier Jimmie Heuga in the Class of 2023.