Denver Makes a Run (and Pass) at Perfection

By Douglas S. Looney, Senior sports columnist of The Christian Science Monitor | The Christian Science Monitor, October 30, 1998 | Go to article overview

Denver Makes a Run (and Pass) at Perfection


Douglas S. Looney, Senior sports columnist of The Christian Science Monitor, The Christian Science Monitor


Perfection is a word too easily thrown about and far too often erroneously said to have been achieved. One diner's perfect chocolate mousse is for another a dessert with not enough chocolate and too much mousse.

Perfection, then, often is in the eye of the beholder. But we have cheapened its meaning by flinging it about too casually to describe a perfect dinner, a perfect wedding, a perfect fishing trip. In truth, each perhaps was good, possibly very good, but perfect? Most likely not. At the very least, it depends on who is applying the descriptive and what the standards are.

A further problem is that perfection is a moving target. A dazzling sunset over the front range of the Rocky Mountains earlier this week was perfect to one viewer but in no way measured up to one seen over Maui in the opinion of another. So, was the Rocky Mountain version in orange and pink and gold brilliance perfect or not? Surfers are in search every day for the perfect wave. Has there been one? Millions spend lifetimes in quest of perfect spouses. Alas, there are only a few of us. Ah, but glory be, there is an example of perfection for which there can be no dispute: a perfect football season, one in which all the games are won and none are lost. The only time this ever was achieved in the National Football League was in 1972 by the Miami Dolphins, 17-0. Bob Griese quarterbacked and the No-Name Defense tackled its way into our memories. But might it come to pass, or possibly to run, of course, that this year's Denver Broncos will scale the heights and plant the flag atop Mt. Perfection? For openers, it's silly to even talk like this about the 7-0 Broncs, who potentially have 12 more games to play, including two with talented Kansas City, one with longtime nemesis Oakland, and season-enders with Miami and Seattle, which might be tests. Then, several playoff games and a Super Bowl. See how silly it is to talk like this? Let's talk. There's no question the defending Super Bowl champ Broncos, with John Elway at quarterback and Terrell Davis at running back and Mike Shanahan at coach, is a team that started the season good, advanced to very good, and is now on the cusp of excellence. Maybe. …

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