4 ways the Broncos could talk themselves into keeping Nathaniel Hackett

Sayre Bedinger
Dec 4, 2022; Baltimore, Maryland, USA; Denver Broncos head coach Nathaniel Hackett looks onto the field during the first half against the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 4, 2022; Baltimore, Maryland, USA; Denver Broncos head coach Nathaniel Hackett looks onto the field during the first half against the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports /
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Denver Broncos, Nathaniel Hackett
Dec 18, 2022; Denver, Colorado, USA; Denver Broncos head coach Nathaniel Hackett before the game against the Arizona Cardinals at Empower Field at Mile High. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports /

3. Firing a HC after one year is certainly not preferable

Whether you’re talking about the financial impact or the message it sends to future head coaches, firing a head coach after one season is certainly not a preferable outcome no matter what way you slice it.

There are two sides to that argument, of course.

In the NFL, winning is all that matters and you’ve got to make sure you get things right. As a franchise, the Denver Broncos have one of the richest and proudest traditions of winning and there is also plenty of loyalty dating back to the entire Pat Bowlen era.

It wasn’t until recently that the Broncos started having a quicker trigger on letting coaches go, which is certainly now something the fan base has grown accustomed to. At this point, everyone is looking not just for the quickest fix but for someone — anyone — to get this team back to winning.

Back in 2011, John Fox came in and helped stabilize the team from one of the worst in the NFL to 8-8 and somehow division champions. After the luster of Fox and his staff had worn off, Gary Kubiak came in and took one of the best teams in the NFL and helped make them a Super Bowl champion.

The Broncos’ greatest success in recent years has seemingly come from retread head coaching options, so Broncos fans are tired of the first-time head coach thing and are ready for someone proven to come into the building.

But if you only give a guy one season, what kind of shot does he really have? If the Broncos brought in Nathaniel Hackett with the idea that he was the best leader for the team, you’d have to think that they still — to some degree — feel that way.

Again, there is a lot of “bad” that falls on Hackett’s plate this year, but he’s been dealt a tough hand in many respects as well from Russell Wilson not playing as well as many had hoped to the fact that this roster is one of the most injured and battered in the league.

If you’re George Paton, you’re looking at the guy you picked to lead the franchise and you can’t help but ask yourself if you made the wrong call. Do the Broncos need a fresh start or does Hackett need more time to gel with Russell Wilson? Are the primary issues plaguing this Broncos team solvable with Hackett still at the helm of it all?

These are tough but valid questions at this point in the year and the more breadcrumbs you find, the more it seems to lead back to Hackett potentially getting a second season in Denver.

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