Alex Gibbs Dies at Age 80; Won 2 Super Bowls with Broncos as OL Coach

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured Columnist IVJuly 12, 2021

DENVER, CO--BRONCOS vs PATRIOTS--Denver Broncos offensive line coach Alex Gibbs talks to his line, Dan Neil #62 Mark Schlereth #69, and Tony Jones #77 during the Broncos Patriots game at Mile High Stadium. THE DENVER POST/JOHN LEYBA 2000 DIGITAL IMAGE  (Photo By John Leyba/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
Photo By John Leyba/The Denver Post via Getty Images

Former NFL offensive line coach Alex Gibbs died at the age of 80.

Gibbs worked with a number of teams across the league but is recognized mostly for his 14 years with the Denver Broncos. He was on the staff when the franchise won back-to-back Super Bowls in 1997 and 1998 and helped the team reach Super Bowl 48 at the end of the 2013 season.

In a statement, the Broncos said they are "deeply saddened" by Gibbs' death:

Denver Broncos @Broncos

We are deeply saddened by the passing of Alex Gibbs, who had a profound impact on the Denver Broncos &amp; the <a href="https://twitter.com/NFL?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@NFL</a> as an offensive line coach.<br><br>Our hearts go out to Alex’s wife, Trina, and the entire Gibbs family as well as Alex’s many former players and fellow coaches. 🧡💙 <a href="https://t.co/lL0050xdt0">pic.twitter.com/lL0050xdt0</a>

"During his 14 years with the Broncos, Coach Gibbs left a lasting legacy on this league with his innovative blocking schemes and outstanding teaching ability," the team said. "He helped the Broncos to Super Bowls during three different decades—including back-to-back World Championships—while forging a reputation as one of the greatest assistant coaches in NFL history."

Gibbs helped to transform Denver's offense by utilizing a zone blocking scheme, which asked linemen to work more collaboratively than focusing on only one defender as they traditionally do in a man-to-man scheme.

Terrell Davis was by far Gibbs' biggest success story. The Hall of Famer ran for 6,413 yards through his first four seasons before his career was derailed by injuries. Almost as impressive, Denver's staff helped turn Olandis Gary and Mike Anderson into 1,000-yard rusher during their rookie seasons.

Having already worked with the Broncos in the mid-'80s, Gibbs returned following the arrival of Mike Shanahan as head coach in 1995. He remained there until 2003. During that span, the team finished with a top-five rushing offense in seven seasons.

Gibbs also spent time as an assistant or consultant with the Raiders, Chargers, Colts, Chiefs, Falcons, Texans and Seahawks, and began his coaching career in the college ranks.