Broncos Update Insider - 1/19

John Fox faces a big turnaround project with the Denver Broncos, but he's maintaining a lot of continuity in announcing eight coaching positions.

Among those staying with the franchise are offensive coordinator Mike McCoy, who had been rumored to be potentially going to Kansas City, and running backs coach Eric Studesville, who was the interim coach after Josh McDaniels was fired.

Others joining Fox's staff include tight ends coach Clancy Barone, quality control-offense coach Brian Callahan, offensive line coach Dave Magazu, defensive line coach Wayne Nunnely, quality control-defense coach Jay Rodgers and wide receivers coach Tyke Tolbert. While Tolbert and Magazu come with Fox from Carolina, the other six are holdovers.

Fox inherited a 1-15 team with the Carolina Panthers in 2002 and guided them into the Super Bowl two years later. He left the Panthers following a 2-14 campaign in 2010, but the Denver Broncos believe Fox has what it takes to turn another franchise around.

After completing his staff, which includes naming a defensive coordinator, the second task facing Fox is answering the question of whether Tim Tebow is the quarterback of the future.

A former defensive coordinator with the New York Giants, Fox hasn't decided whether to scrap the Broncos' 3-4 scheme and return to a 4-3.

"What is exciting is that you get to change and adjust and recruit and all the fun things that are a part of this competitive thing called the National Football League," Fox said during his introductory press conference.

As for Tebow, Fox said he was interested in the quarterback during last year's draft and he's impressed with Tebow's intangibles. That said, he didn't commit to him as the 2011 starter, either.

"I think (Tebow's) intangibles make that progress accelerate and that's the thing I was most impressed about him," Fox said. "The thing that's impressive about Tim Tebow is he's not afraid to be great."

Kyle Orton and Brady Quinn are also still on the roster, leading Fox to say, "The quarterback situation is better than the one - some of the ones - that I've been at."

Denver also interviewed Houston Texans offensive coordinator and former longtime Broncos assistant Rick Dennison, Jaguars offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter, Giants defensive coordinator Perry Fewell and interim coach Eric Studesville.

"I am very thankful to (owner) Pat Bowlen and (Executive Vice President of Football Operations) John Elway for giving me the opportunity to coach a football team with such a proud tradition," Fox said. "The Broncos have a culture of winning, and I am excited to continue that legacy.

"I can't wait to get to work, pushing our players to be the best they can be and representing this community as head coach of the Denver Broncos."

Fox's hiring came after three names publicly linked to the job pulled themselves out of consideration or never made it to Dove Valley for face time with the organization. Jim Harbaugh went to the 49ers. Gregg Williams opted to remain the Saints defensive coordinator. And Mike Mularkey chose to focus on Atlanta's ongoing Super Bowl chase rather than clutter his schedule.

There's no question that the experience edge heavily favored Fox, who's spent 21 years in the pros and until early January was the fourth-longest tenured coach in the league with Carolina. Fox also has experience turning around a dormant franchise, after the Panthers went 1-15 in 2001. That franchise improved to 7-9 his first season and reached Super Bowl XXXVIII the following year.

"You know, I've been doing it," Fox said before he was hired. "I have a plan, whether it's a bye-week schedule, a training-camp schedule. This isn't my first rodeo, so to speak. So I think I do have a blueprint to do it. We've had success -- some years more than others. But, you know, the full body of work, I think, holds a blueprint of success."


--The first move Denver made after hiring John Elway to run player personnel was retaining Brian Xanders as general manager.

Since that time, the team has gone to great lengths distancing Xanders' decisions from those of Josh McDaniels. Elway even went so far as to call it a "one-man show" with the former head coach around.

Xanders would only say that as far as being inhibited in the decision-making process under the old structure, it "was on a case-by-case basis." "We worked together, but some things didn't work out as planned in the way the decisions were made. But I respected the organization and the way it was structured," he added.

The spotlight is squarely on Xanders now.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "It's tough to hear 4-12. Somebody told me that and it's hard to hear that being our record because that's not us. We can't accept that. And it just makes you anxious for next year to come out and work that much harder in the offseason, that much more, because it's not a good feeling being on this side of it at all." -- WR Eddie Royal, on Denver completing 2010 with a franchise-worst 12 losses.

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