John Fox, Peyton Manning, and John Gruden spent hours upon hours discussing football in John Lynch’s basement last week. Could you imagine being a fly on that wall?
“Watching Gruden and Peyton go at it just talking ball, I wish I could have had that conversation when I was still playing,” Lynch said. “I learned a lot last night.”
Gruden brought tape for Manning to watch, and the four men who have a long history in the NFL got together to teach each other a few things.
There may be no one outside of the Broncos organization more excited to see Manning and Fox partner up than Gruden.
“I’m excited he hooked up with John Fox, a veteran coach, a defensive coach,” Gruden said. “I think it’s going to allow Peyton to really flourish in a new setting because he’s got an experienced head coach. I know what John Fox’s record is when they’ve scored over 25 points per game. It’s pretty impressive. I know Peyton Manning for 14 years has been slicing people up for about 25 points per game.”
The right elements are in place for an offensive explosion, but a lot of the success that the Broncos have on offense depends on offensive coordinator Mike McCoy.
McCoy has proven to be adaptable, tailoring his playbook to suit the players that he has on the roster. Make no mistake, however. The zone-read is a thing of the past with Manning under center.
“He’s very flexible,” McCoy said of what Manning wants. “He wants some new ideas…There’s a lot of things that he hasn’t done that he’s excited to look at. Get in some two back situations…We’ve had a lot of success with that here.”
When it comes down to it, this is Manning’s show and McCoy is merely the back stage director. That’s how things were in Indianapolis and that’s how things will be in Denver.
“When a guy’s played as long as he has, it’s not going to take him a long time to figure it out,” McCoy said of Manning.”He doesn’t need from week to week all the reps that a younger player needs because he’s seen it…The way Peyton works and the way he wants to work is unbelievable.”