Fox takes over; case for McCoy Lard 1-14-11

Good Morning, Broncos fans! John Fox will be introduced as Denver's 14th head coach today at 2PM ET at Dove Valley, just two days after his interview with the team trainer Broncos' executive committee. Fox will turn 56 in a few weeks and carries with him a 73-71 record over nine years as Carolina's head coach, along with a reputation for tough, physical teams that thrive at running the ball on offense and keeping opponents out of the end zone. Fox has worked in the NFL as defensive backs coach with Pittsburgh and San Diego, defensive coordinator for the Raiders and Giants, and head coach of the Panthers.

Over his 21 years in those capacities, Fox's pass defenses have ranked on average 10th-best in the NFL in passing TDs allowed, leading the league three times, and ranking 8th or better ten times. His pass defenses have ranked in the league's ten best in interceptions 11 times in 21 years. In Fox's 16 seasons as a DC or HC, his defenses have ranked on average 12th in both points and yards allowed, including nine top-10 rankings in scoring defense and seven top-10 yardage rankings. In those same years, Fox's defenses have ranked on average 15th in rushing scores allowed and 13th in rushing yardage. In 8 out of 16 seasons, Fox's defenses have ranked among the league's top 12 in takeaways.

During Fox's time running the Panthers, his offenses ranked on average 20th in points and 22nd in yards. Rushing the ball, they ranked on average 15th in yardage and 19th in scores, while his passing offenses ranked on average 22nd in yards and 19th in touchdowns. Yes, there are a lot of clumsy numbers here, but there's a point...

Where Fox's teams have struggled is on offense, more specifically with regards passing the ball. Now, if there's one thing even the most ardent Josh McDaniels haters can admit, it's that the guy knows how to direct a prolific passing attack. And while he certainly won't be John Fox's offensive coordinator, perhaps the next-best thing would be for Mike McCoy to stay with the Broncos in that capacity. It's likely to happen, as McCoy worked under Fox in Carolina for one year as an offensive assistant and six as the QB coach, and nobody on the Broncos' staff knows the offensive personnel better than McCoy. But beyond familiarity as a selling point, McCoy has been with the Broncos for two seasons now - and while the passing attack never quite achieved the consistency hoped for, undoubtedly more was extracted from Kyle Orton and Company's talents than most expected.

Perhaps even more crucial for Denver's future prospects is that McCoy has worked with Tim Tebow for the past year, and despite the recent tempered comments from John Elway, Tebow is very clearly the future. We can reasonably expect that QB coach Ben McDaniels will follow his brother to his next position (likely St. Louis), but hopefully the Broncos will see to it that he remains. After all, they did keep him on board after firing Josh, and Ben helped Tebow look a lot more like a legitimate NFL quarterback than most had ever expected to see in his first season. Folks can scoff that Ben is in Denver thanks to nepotism, or that he never coached in the NFL prior to 2010. But his work in turning a player who was widely called a multiyear project into a quarterback who accounted for 7 touchdowns in 3 games should speak for itself.

Broncos


Chris Hall speaks to Fox about his new gig. Notably, Fox mentions his hope that the Broncos will be "explosive on offense."

Ted Bartlett does that thing he does so well - translating the complexity of football schemes into plain English for those of us who don't study countless hours of film. Okay, so his point is actually that Fox's defenses are generally not very complex, but you probably wouldn't know that if Ted didn't tell you. Ted explains why Fox's brand of defense is a good fit for the personnel Denver already has, plus the changes he expects we may see to the defensive lineup.

Andrew Mason's two most recent NFL gigs have involved working for the Broncos and the Panthers, so he'll be the perfect guy to guide us through the transition to a John Fox-led team. First, he tells us what to expect out of Fox. Next, he explains that we all probably should have seen the Fox hiring coming from a mile away.

Tom Sorensen, who covers the Panthers for the Charlotte Observer, says that players love Fox and had only praise for their coach even in the depths of a two-win season. Sorensen also says that Fox is a charismatic guy, although we can expect him to say as little as possible in his pressers.

Fox has already offered jobs to four of his assistants in Carolina, including OL coach Dave Magazu, who teaches a zone-blocking scheme.

Legwold says that McCoy is, in fact expected to stick around.

LJ heads all the way back to Fox's playing days to tell us what he's about. Plus, some interesting tidbits on Fox.

Woody calls Fox an exceptional hire.

Legwold thinks Elvis Dumervil will thrive under Fox.

Legwold says the headhunter the team utilized is also a psychologist and had assisted in the Chiefs and Falcons' most recent coaching hires. Plus, he lays out the team's new power structure.

Bob LaMonte is basically the agent for everyone mentioned above.

Terry Frei shares the reaction of some Broncos legends to the hire.

Here's the team's official press release announcing Fox's hiring.

Fox is the opposite of McDaniels columns


Think we'll get much of these? Here's Klis batting leadoff. Klis says Fox spent 11 hours speaking with Elway and Brian Xanders on Wednesday, and Pat Bowlen called with a job offer yesterday morning. Fox will reportedly make between $3 million and $3.5 million annually over the next four years.

Batting in the two hole, Dave Krieger.

Enemies


It looks like Greg Manusky will replace Ron Rivera in San Diego.

Acee assesses the Chargers' roster by position.

Plus, he says San Diego has talked about bringing in Nnamdi Asomugha. YIKES.

As usual, the Raiders are the last team without a head coach.

Trimmings


Cleveland made it official with Pat Shurmur.

The Cowboys are interested in Rob Ryan for their DC position.

Brad Childress will interview for Miami's OC job.

Former Denver assistant Jedd Fisch is headed to the Hurricanes.

Cam Newton has declared for the draft.

Brian Burke's game probabilities for the divisional round.

Doug is IAOFM’s resident newsman and spelling czar. Follow him on Twitter @IAOFM

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