The list of candidates for the vacant Broncos’ head coaching role continues to grow. Denver has formally requested an interview with Cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, reports Ian Rapoport of NFL Network (Twitter link). In addition, Mike Klis of 9News tweets that the Broncos have reached out for permission to speak with Rams DC Raheem Morris and 49ers DC DeMeco Ryans.
The Quinn news comes as no surprise, given the degree to which he has been linked to Denver this offseason and last. The former Falcons HC was one of the top candidates in the 2022 coaching cycle, taking part in interviews with the Broncos but also the Bears, Dolphins, Vikings, and Giants.
Choosing to remain in Dallas for one more year proved to be a fruitful one for Quinn. The 52-year-old led Dallas to a solid showing in most defensive categories, including the fifth-fewest points allowed per game (20.1) and the league’s third-highest sack (54) and seventh-highest interception (16) totals. He has experience as a head coach (something widely thought to be a top priority for the Broncos after their disappointing results in recent years with rookie HCs), and has familiarity with Russell Wilson given their shared time in Seattle.
Morris, likewise, has a lengthy NFL resume including a three-year stint as head coach of the Buccaneers and time spent alongside Quinn in Atlanta. He has held his current role in Los Angeles for the past two years, and helped guide the team’s defense during their Super Bowl win last year. The 46-year-old has been named as a candidate to replace Sean McVay should he step away from the Rams, but he is also a likely to be highly sought-after from outside teams as well.
The same is expected to hold true of Ryans, 38. He has been a member of San Francisco’s staff since 2017, working his way up to the DC role last year. Over the course of the past two campaigns, the 49ers have boasted an elite unit on that side of the ball, making Ryans a serious head coaching candidate in short order. With San Francisco being playoff-bound, he, like Quinn, will not be eligible to interview with the Broncos until next week at the earliest, should Denver be granted permission to do so.
The Broncos already have their first set of interviews lined up, with current DC Ejiro Evero and, virtually, Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh. The addition of Quinn, Morris and Ryans to their list of candidates – which also includes, of course, Sean Payton – will make the Denver search one to watch in the coming weeks.