According to NFLN's Mike Lombardi and Jason La Canfora, the Broncos are working toward hiring Sean McDermott to coordinate their defense. McDermott was fired yesterday by the Eagles, for whom he had coached thirteen seasons as an assistant, the last two as defensive coordinator. McDermott had trained under legendary Eagles DC Jim Johnson before taking over following Johnson's passing in 2009.
Under McDermott's direction, the Eagles' defense struggled to keep opponents off the scoreboard in 2010 - they allowed 377 points in (21st in the NFL), although they ranked 12th in yardage, 5th in takeaways with 34, and tied for 10th in sacks with 39. During McDermott's first season directing the defense, the Eagles allowed 337 points (19th), ranked 12th in yardage and 3rd in takeaways with 38 while tying for the league's third-best in sacks with 44.
For comparison's sake, the Broncos in 2010 allowed 471 points (32nd), were also last in yardage, 30th in takeaways with 18, and last in sacks with 23.
Philly Sports Daily has some insightful quotes regarding the 36-year old McDermott, including the following from safety Quintin Mikell:
There is a lot of stuff in the red zone that we do. It’s not easy. I think our red zone defense is tougher than our blitzes. It’s not easy to pick up. Here’s the problem I think we’ve had with the red zone all year: It’s a difficult defense that we run down there. And you don’t get enough time to work on certain things.”
As expected, former Panthers LB coach Richard Smith has reportedly agreed to join John Fox's new staff with the Broncos.