25 Jan Stromme’s Offseason Takes: Broncos Replace Kubiak with Familiar Face
By: Mike Stromme
SportsCrew NFL Analyst
It’s never too early to talk about next season, is it?
Yes, we still have the Super Bowl left to be played, a game that shall be (as the kids say) epic AF! But for 30 other teams, the offseason has begun. 30 NFL teams have already started their journey towards Super Bowl LII (which is in Minneapolis of all places), and as should we!
The immediate reaction of any team that has under-performed, underwhelmed and under-achieved is to evaluate the men calling the plays, setting the lineups and firing-up his men. The coaching staff. Well, Black Monday (the first Monday after Week 17, for the uninitiated) is well beyond us, the dust has settled on much of the coaching vacancies and teams will now move-on to evaluating their current team personnel. #foreshadowing
Up until free agency gets hot, I will be breaking-down the coaching changes in the NFL. Today, we begin with the Super Bowl 50 Champions, the Denver Broncos.
Due to some unfortunate health issues, former Head Coach Gary Kubiak had to tell the man he formally backed-up in the 90s, Broncos Executive VP of Football Operations John Elway, that he needed to retire from his coaching post in the Mile High city.
Damn shame. In Kubiak’s final five seasons as a head coach with Denver and Houston, he posted a record of 45-32 and made two Super Bowl appearances in Denver. Much like his mentor Mike Shannahan, he brought a Super Bowl victory back to Denver. Needless to say, Kubiak’s retirement was a rather sombre occasion for the Bronco faithful.
While Kubiak will be missed, newcomer Vance Joesph will fit this system (as Ace Ventura and my boy, Lou Landers would say), LIKE A GLOVE! He comes from Miami, where he spent last season as the team’s defensive coordinator.
What makes Joesph a great fit for this team is, his familiarity with the defensive scheme; the team’s bread and butter. Before Joesph was in Miami, he was the DB coach in Houston from 2011-2013. Who else was in Houston during those years? Yep, that’s right… Gary Kubiak and former defensive coordinator Wade Phillips. Hell, Wade even gave his blessing via Twitter:
“Congrats to my friend Vance Great hire by John Elway.Don’t worry about the D. Vance knows what I know ,Plus what he knows about Defense !” -Wade Phillips (@sonofbum). Jan. 13, 2017.
The team also promoted last year’s DB coach, Joe Woods, to DC; essentially maintaining the status quo.
While the Broncos made the smart decision on the defensive side of the ball, they made some sneaky-savvy moves on the offensive side of coaching. Moves that would resemble some low-key, sneak-dissin’ towards the rest of the AFC West. Specifically, the Chargers and Raiders.
The Broncos have not only re-hired former Chargers Head Coach Mike McCoy as offensive coordinator, they also hired former Oakland Raiders OC Bill Musgrave to be their QBs coach. Two coaches that have worked closely with the two best QBs in the division are now on the same side as one of the league’s premier defenses.
Look out, AFC West!
For more football talk, follow me on Twitter @stromme_93