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Published on 01/03/2009 at Sat Jan 03 08:00.
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As of Friday, the Denver Broncos will interview five candidates for their Head Coach opening through next week – four coaches from other teams and one in-house candidate. Here’s the skinny:

Steve Spagnuolo

  • Current gig: Giants Defensive Coordinator
  • Interview: Saturday
  • Kyle’s Take: Spagnuolo is my #1 guy, and I’d be thrilled with him as our new Head Coach. He’s obviously got a nose for the defense and has done a terrific job getting pressure on opposing quarterbacks. Maybe he’d convince the Giants’ d-line coach, Mike Waufle, to come with him as our defensive coordinator. That, my friends, would be a coup.

Josh McDaniels

  • Current gig: Patriots Offensive Coordinator
  • Interview: Sunday
  • Kyle’s Take: The facts are simple: McDaniels has done as impressive a job as any offensive coach in NFL history. The 2007 Pats broke every record imaginable under McDaniels’ tutelage, and the 2008 squad hardly missed a beat with Matt Cassell playing instead of Tom Brady. A very worthy candidate, in my mind.

Raheem Morris

  • Current gig: Buccaneers Defensive Coordinator
  • Interview: Wednesday
  • Kyle’s Take: Morris is still a bit too green for my tastes. If he blows the Broncos away during his interview, though, don’t be surprised if they jump on hiring him. He’s a young defensive mind who’s reportedly in the same mold as the Steelers’ Mike Tomlin.

Rick Dennison

  • Current gig: Broncos Offensive Coordinator/Offensive Line Coach
  • Interview: Wednesday
  • Kyle’s Take: Thus far, Dennison represents the only in-house candidate, and I’m sure the Broncos wouldn’t mind going the promotion route one bit. Dennison has been on the staff 14 years – remind you of someone? – and could be at risk to leave with that certain someone if he ends up somewhere this year. He’s done a fantastic job for the Broncos offense over the years and is worthy of the next step. I’d be happy with this hire.

Jason Garrett

  • Current gig: Cowboys Offensive Coordinator
  • Interview: TBA Next Week
  • Kyle’s Take: Garrett isn’t exactly my cup of tea. He’s very green – only two years as a coordinator – and only has one “good” year to boot. Do your due diligence, Denver, but please, look elsewhere.

It’s still early, but among other possible candidates is University of Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops (expect an interview after the BCS Championship Bowl next week).

  • Scott

    Spagnuolo. That would be my first and final choice, but I just know if he’s the head coach, we will have to give him a good name. I found this info at NAMELAB Italian: from Neapolitan spagnuolo ‘Spaniard’, a variant of Spagnolo. Though this is really meaningless, I thought we should list a set of names so we don’t butcher his when he is hired. (fingers crossed)

    1. SPAGMAN 2. SPAGS 3. G-MAN (my personal favorite.)

  • steve

    if morris is really of the same mold as tomlin, then i dont see why not him, tomlin is a great coach..also i would be happy with mcdaniels, imagine if our offense became as dominant as the pats..and of course spagnuolo would be good too, he could find us some justin tucks and osi umenioras and antonion pierces through the draft..

  • Bucky

    I really think Morris is still to green, give the guy another couple of years as the D Coordinator out in Tampa and i am guessing he will be ready, I just think he will need that experience before going HC. As far as I am concerned i want noting to do with a HC who is an O Coordinator, I really like Bates and i think we can keep him on bored for a few more years, but not if we bring in an O guy that will want more control over that side of the ball. In the end i have to agree with Scott, and Kerry and a lot of other posts. as far as the guys out there are concerned i want to see us pick up Spagnuolo, he is the guy that can turn around our D and thus our team. I am sure we will run through all of these interviews, but I am really hoping we end up with Spags.

    One question though, do we have to wait to make an offer to these guys who’s teams are in the playoffs, until after the playoffs are over? or can we get the deal done now?

  • Bucky

    Another thing to think about as far as future articles would be about the draft and how a new coach could, this or even next year, affect the teams willingness to draft a first round RB. I think i just got chills!

  • dbroncos

    The Raheem Morris link goes to Spags’ Giants page.

    I really think that Spags has to be our #1 pursuit. I just dont think that a coach can jump from a position coach (defensive backs) to head coach.

  • Shawn

    Steve Spagnuolo is my first choice as well. Next woud be Jason Garrett. Both have at least a few years of being responsible for their side of the ball. Nothing against Raheem Morris, but if he was a defensive backs coach up until a few months ago than he is totally unqualifed. Bringing up a college coach is like trusting your retirement to 7 digits and a power ball. When you win, you win big, but there are lots more loosers than jackpot tickets. Patriot assistants that go elsewhere flop and nothing ever changes in Foxboro. As much as I hate Belicheck that tells me that his assistants are just warm bodies.

  • Kyle

    Thanks dbroncos, the link is fixed.

  • Kyle

    Oh, and as for nickname wars, it’s all about the Spags.

  • Patrick


  • broncoNM

    1st choice: spags or mcdaniels: Spags could build a D and hopefully keep bates on offense and we are set to start taking over the afc west. Mcdaniels is young and can continue to develop cutler. He can create a balanced offense and can enhance cutlers skill sets which includes has arm going down field and underneath passes and screens to relieve pressure. This would be great for our young talented offense. His choice for DC would be crucial.
    2nd Choice: Morris- He is young and green. But a young defensive mind is hard to find. He is a risk but it could be really rewarding to have a young defensive coach with fresh ideas. I think he is a long shot but if he nails the interview and has the right stuff i dont see why not? Since spags is a bit more proven i would be surprised. Again if we could team him up w/ bates we could be set for awhile.

    Everyone else shouldnt even bother flying into denver:
    Garrett is over rated and could not control the drama in dallas and had a talented team that didnt even get to the playoffs. Unporven too risky!
    Dennison has been fantastic but too much of the same. I just think there are other canidates that could offer positive change.
    Stoops please no! college coaches dont work and it is too risky. Even if he did work out eventually i feel there would be brutal growing pains. Other canidates could make an immediate impact with proven draft records. This young talent should avoid growing pains. We could be good now.

  • OC Bronco

    Bucky- That is correct we would have to wait until their season is over to make an offer.

  • DepressedSF

    Aren’t Morris and McDaniels both 32. They might be very bright guys, but that is just too young. I mean, the same age as Champ right? Head coaches need to be authority figures, not colleagues.

  • Andy

    I wonder what they will have for dinner tonight.

  • Andy

    In all seriousness, we need this decision ASAP becuase it looks as if Dungy is going to retire. If that does happen, they will be the premiere job. So, we need to get this locked up now.

  • rcsodak

    Indy already HAS a “HC in waiting”, just like Seattle.

  • BroncoinVA9986

    We need a Defensive Coach in Denver. Josh Mcdaniels is great, but our offense is alread one of the top offenses in the league. We ranked second in the league in offensive yards oh and almost dead last in turnovers. I like Spags, Raheem Morris catches my attention..also If we can get a defensive coach and keep most of the offensive staff than we should be okay. ONE issue though If you keep the whole offensive staff there might be some resentment for the Firing of Shannahan..

  • AtomicLeo

    What about Cowher? I’m kind of bummed that Bowlen hasn’t at least made an overture to him.

  • East

    Cowher is like an Acura TL and Spagnuolu is like an Accord. They’re the same car but the Accord is a whole lot cheaper.

  • Andy

    rcsodak Indy already HAS a “HC in waiting”, just like Seattle.

    Good point, didn’t think about that. Makes me feel better.

  • flyeaglefly

    Spag#1,Cowher #2, We need a coach that puts some discipline back into the program, Shanny was soft on his players,#2 must be a defense oriented coach. Who ever fits that bill is the pick. Broncos fan since 82. Go Broncs

  • Boisebroncoguy

    How about Spagnanomous?!

  • Bob W

    And after all this time I didn’t even know Dennison was the Offensive Cord for Denver. Interview all these coaches and at the end it should be Spagnuolu and his D Line coach as the DC , plus bring in Vilma at MLB draft Mays out of USC for SS and if not Franshised go after Nnamdi Asomugha and dump Bly. Leave our offensive coaches alone.

  • paty

    Spags #1 choice