Broncos general manager John Elway and ex-head coach John Fox have released a statement in the wake of the news that the two parties would be parting ways. “John Fox and I met for more than an hour on Monday afternoon to discuss the 2014 season and our goals for the future,” said Elway, via Mike Klis of the Denver Post. “During our open and candid conversation, it became clear that it was best for both the Denver Broncos and Coach Fox to move on and make this change.” Like Elway, Fox was thankful and complementary, but also gave a hint about his plans for the future. “I am eager to continue my coaching career and look forward to the opportunities that lie ahead,” said Fox, indicating that he’s open to other jobs.
Let’s take a look at the fallout from and reaction to the shakeup, and how it affects the Broncos, Fox, and the rest of the team’s coaching staff.
- The Broncos had not considered moving on from Fox until a report surfaced yesterday from Jay Glazer of FOX Sports, a friend of Fox’s, indicating that Fox could be out, per Klis. The club worried that Fox was “keeping his options open” with regard to other coaching vacancies, which led to today’s meeting.
- Elway was reportedly unhappy with the Broncos’ mental toughness, and was especially disappointed with how the club performed in the postseason, writes Klis. For his part, Fox wanted more control over personnel, and preferred to have a say over the draft and the roster.
- Fox could be an option to replace Marc Trestman with the Bears, a source tells Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk (Twitter link). The link between Fox and Chicago is clear, as Fox has a close relationship with Ernie Accorsi, who is advising the Bears’ head coaching search, tweets Greg Gabriel of the National Football Post. Additionally, Fox’s best friend in the NFL is Saints head coach Sean Payton, who worked with new Chicago GM Ryan Pace, meaning Fox should be well-informed about where the Bears stand, per Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (via Twitter).
- Appearing on The Michael Kay Show, Jets advisor Charley Casserly declined to speak on whether Gang Green would be interested in Fox, according to Kimberley Martin of Newsday (Twitter link).
- On the Broncos side, Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com doesn’t expect the club to hire a big-name coach, noting that Denver’s coaching budget “is far from expansive” (Twitter link).
- Gary Kubiak was the Broncos offensive coordinator from 2003-05, and Ed Werder of ESPN speculates (via Twitter) that the club could be interested in a reunion. However, in response to a report that the Bears were pursuing him, Kubiak released a statement yesterday saying he would remain with the Ravens, and a Baltimore source tells Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun (on Twitter) that he’d be shocked if Kubiak now reversed course.
- The most obvious candidate for the Broncos job could be offensive coordinator Adam Gase, whom the 49ers will meet with tonight in an effort to hire him as their head coach. There are conflicting reports on whether Gase will be a candidate for Denver’s top job, however, as Florio tweets that Gase will in fact be an option, while Klis writes that the OC is not considered likely to be promoted.
- Given Mike Shanahan’s relationship with Elway, it would’ve been fair to wonder if a reunion was in order. However, Klis reports that Shanahan is not a candidate for the Broncos vacancy.
- Meanwhile, one candidate who probably will garner an interview is Broncos running backs coach Eric Studesville, who was the club’s interim head coach in 2010 following Josh McDaniels’ firing, per La Canfora (Twitter link).