After only one season, the Broncos have fired Offensive Coordinator Rich Scangarello, according to an official press release from the team and head coach Vic Fangio. Earlier today, NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero was the first to report the news of the firing.
According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, the Broncos are expected to target an experienced play-caller with their next choice to take over the offense. Rapoport opines that recently fired head coach Pat Shurmur is a strong candidate, as he fits the bill as a veteran play caller and the deal would make sense for both parties. NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo stated that Shurmur has a lot of different opportunities right now, but the “best educated guess is to watch the Broncos closely. ” Other candidates for the job could also be long-time play-caller Hue Jackson, Jason Garrett, and Freddie Kitchens.
In a statement, Fangio said: “After a lot of consideration and discussion after the season, I determined that a change at offensive coordinator ultimately would be best for our team. We need to do everything we can to get better–in all areas—as we start working toward next year. Rich is a bright coach with a great future ahead of him. I appreciate all of his hard work and thank him for his contributions to the Broncos.”
After going 7-9, the Broncos started three different quarterbacks throughout the year, and finished 28th in yards (298.6) and scoring (17.6), 30th on third down (31.7%), and 29th in red zone touchdown rate (45.3%). The Broncos were only NFL team to finish in bottom five in all four key offensive metrics: points, yards, third down percentage, and red zone percentage.
The new coordinator will inherit a promising cast of young offensive players headlined by quarterback Drew Lock, wide receiver Courtland Sutton, running back Phillip Lindsay, tight end Noah Fant, and left guard Dalton Risner.
In a press conference on December 30th, Fangio said he expected Scangarello, Defensive Coordinator Ed Donatell, and Special Teams Coordinator Tom McMahon to remain with the team. Obviously, it seems Fangio and General Manager/Head of Football Operations John Elway had a change of heart with the offense, as the team will now go in a different direction.