Denver Broncos case for an offensive-minded head coach
It’s time for change in the Mile High City, to truly move out of this losing era in Denver Broncos History, the team needs fresh offensive ideas at the top.
This is probably one of the more repeated takes on Denver Broncos Twitter these days alongside Drew Lock, Aaron Rodgers, Russell Wilson, Tom McMahon, on and on into another offseason. However, I do feel the Broncos should strongly consider a head coach with experience leading an offense, and it’s due to the landscape of the modern NFL as it is to the needs of the team.
My main assertion is that the glaring weakness of the Denver Broncos for the past six seasons has obviously been the quarterback, and to develop a quarterback you need stability on offense.
High-end veteran QB’s can be held back by bad playcalling too, just ask Russell Wilson about the last time he went to the Super Bowl. Even if the Broncos were to bring in a Dan Quinn, or a Brian Flores, they’d need to find a quality OC to run the other side of the ball. And the simple fact of the NFL this day in age is that if you have success on offense, someone is going to hire your Offensive Coordinator. It’s only a matter of time.
Josh McDaniels’ tenure in New England is a clear outlier, in almost every other case offensive coordinators are a hot commodity in the head coaching market and there is a good amount of turnover at this position.
This hasn’t been a problem in Denver Broncos country because the most recent OC’s have been Pat Shurmur, Rich Scangarello, Bill Musgrave, Mike McCoy, Rick Dennison, and Adam Gase. Only Gase went on to become a head coach, and Rich Scangarello is the only one still coaching (as Kyle Shanahan’s QB coach). My concern is that if the team goes defense with this head coaching hire, we’d wind up between a rock and a hard place.
If the OC does well, gets the next QB playing at a high level, and gets all the young weapons into a rhythm, they’d be at the top of prospective HC lists and gone too soon. Yet if they do poorly, we’re stuck in the same boat we’ve been in since Gary Kubiak hung up the cans.
Better to be Sean McVay, who keeps his system in place despite his offensive coaches being hired away from under him left and right, than to be Dan Quinn post-Super Bowl. Everyone saw what Kyle Shanahan’s offense could do after Matt Ryan’s MVP season, and he was immediately hired as San Francisco’s head coach.
Quinn was able to recapture some of that magic the next season with Steve Sarkisian, but that team was never the same after they lost Shanahan and he cycled through two OC’s before exiting Atlanta.
This is not to say that defensive hires are obsolete in the modern NFL, but given the state of the franchise, we need an offensive mind at the center of the room. As it stands, George Paton and the Denver Broncos are in the process of interviewing 10 candidates so far, and they’re split 6-4 between guys with offensive and defensive backgrounds in coaching.