It was an interesting start to the season. Fox had to get accustom to the roster quickly and make decisions about players and the shape of the team that he wanted to run. Many players were not ready and quick decisions had to be made and one of the safest ways to do this is to start the veteran with experience. Fox did this at a number of positions and one of the key ones was Quarterback and starting 'Fainting Goat' Orton. With what Fox saw and the team he envisioned running you can not fault Fox for picking Orton over the other quarterbacks he had at the time. It was probably the right move.
Luckily for us fans Orton was Orton and the fainting goat returned. This lead to one of the biggest decision of the year, changing to your back up Quarterback....Tim Tebow. For me this showed huuuuugggggeeeee balls on Fox's part and major props goes to McCoy and Fox for transforming the offense to suit Tebow's style. Can you just picture for a second if Tebow had gone 0-6 instead of 6-0 during that stretch. If he had we could very well be looking for a new coach. It was a massive call and Fox put a lot of stock into Tebow.
Of course we know what follows. The Broncos rally around Tebow and they make the playoffs. One thing does worry me is how flat the Broncos came out against the Patriots. It is a key part of Fox's job that he gets these players pumped and ready for the game. It has me a little concerned that for the really big games that Fox can't get his message across. But the game the week before was emotionally draining so I will say it was a wash for now.
In summary Fox was a great hire, he showed me that he has learned from his experiences and continues to improve his coaching skills. His effect on the team and positive energy he supplied was evident throughout the year and the Broncos record reflected that. Plus since he had such an impressive year he also finished third in the voting for head coach of the year. Fox could be our coach for a long time and will need something catastrophic to happen before he is removed. Here's to a well coached season Fox.
At the start of this season McCoy was kept on the staff by Fox and was handed the play calling duties. Over the first 5 games he was ok but not great at the position, the team of course struggled mightily but he continued to grow as the year went on. A lot changed when Tebow was named the starter. After trying to run their tradition offense for a few weeks it was obvious to McCoy and Fox that Tebow was not prepared enough through TC and practice to run that offensive efficiently. They decided to add elements to the offense that Tebow knew so well, the read-option stuff he had run in college. This like Fox making the decision to turn to Tebow showed huge balls from the two that they were willing to change the offense to help Tebow succeed. In a way it worked, the Broncos had the number one running attack in the league.
Many people my self included were frustrated with some of his play calling. Things like runs on 3rd and long, no crossing routes, not much of a screen game, only running two or three WRs down field on passing plays and tight ends didn't see much love. These problems persisted as the year went on and annoyed fans. It was difficult to watch some times when you knew what play was coming and the continuous 3 and out series killed fans inside. But whether by design or just purer luck it all sort of my sense in the end. Leading into the playoffs the Broncos had ran something like 28 times from 29 on first down. So on first down in OT against the Steelers, the Steelers secondary were playing the run and moved up into the box. Play action pass, 80 yard run for a touchdown and the Mile High Goodbye was born.
Since the Broncos had such an successful season and that McCoy had been a large part to that, he started getting offers for head coaching positions. But he was not successful and is staying in Denver. Some had wished he had left but I am in different. He is a good coach but he needs to show improvement. Be a little more diverse in your play calling and when you run pass plays set them up to succeed. Use rub and crossing routes. But I think he knows that already. With a full offsesaon of training ahead of him the team should be more familiar with the plays and be able to do a few more things then in recent years. Here's to a good season ahead.
There are a number of reasons why the Broncos defense improved and one of them is Allen. Though he had a better squad of players to coach and more focused input from the big boys upstairs, Allen also demonstrated creative and aggressiveness. His weapon of choice none other than Von Miller. What Allen did to move Miller around to take advantage of his skill set was great to see. Sending him up the A great was a stroke of genius. Allen does deserve credit for helping retool and get the best out of the defense. But there was skill a lot of work to be done....
Unfortunately since Allen had done a such good job and the Raiders are the Raiders they stole Allen away from us to be their Head Coach. Allen went from secondary coach, to defensive coordinate to head coach in two years and that is impressive. But Allen leaves the team with a half completed job to take on an even harder job with the Raiders. Luckily for us we picked up Jack Del Rio and the defense shouldn't skip a beat. To Allen I say I hope you crash and burn and lead the Raiders to failure.
That is the coaching review all done so.....we gone! ~ Aussie.