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Denver enters the defensive coordinator derby

In an offseason that has seen plenty of defensive coordinator jobs open up, another one has become available, in an unexpected location.

Jay Glazer of FOX reports that Broncos coach Josh McDaniels and defensive coordinator Mike Nolan have “mutually decided” to part ways.

The move comes after a season in which Nolan’s presence increased the team’s performance from No. 29 to No. 7 in total defense.

The reason for the separation isn’t known (yet), but the development puts Nolan in play for vacancies in Miami, Buffalo, and Chicago.

Nolan, who uses a base 3-4 scheme, would be a good fit with the Dolphins.

He also could be a fit in Arizona, if coach Ken Whisenhunt decides to dump Bill Davis after the Cardinals surrendered 90 points in two postseason games — and if Whisenhunt opts to embrace the 3-4 approach used by his former team, the Steelers.

In Arizona, Nolan would be returning the the NFC West, where he served as head coach of the 49ers from 2005 through the first seven games of 2008.

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30 Responses to “Denver enters the defensive coordinator derby”
  1. ampats says: Jan 18, 2010 6:04 PM

    I would be interested on why Nolan left. I think this could be a mistake by JM.

  2. BroncFanOr says: Jan 18, 2010 6:07 PM

    It can’t be a mistake buy McDaniels if Nolan said he was resigning. How can he prevent that?

  3. chadp2351 says: Jan 18, 2010 6:08 PM

    Wow! Does anybody actually like McDaniels? It seems like he runs everybody out of Denver.

  4. KingJoe! says: Jan 18, 2010 6:10 PM

    Well maybe because Nolan wants to dump anyone over the age of 28 and Nolan wants experience.

  5. Burritto says: Jan 18, 2010 6:10 PM

    ” …if Whisenhunt opts to embrace the 3-4 approach used by his former team, the Steelers.”
    Let’s use the Wayback Machine to go back to 2007 and see if Ken Whisenhunt is going to use the 3-4 at all.

  6. spliffbunker says: Jan 18, 2010 6:12 PM

    I can picture it now…McDaniels on the phone to Shanahan requesting permission to interveiw Bob Slowic…

  7. Olacfz says: Jan 18, 2010 6:13 PM

    This is . . . odd.

  8. Buschman says: Jan 18, 2010 6:17 PM

    The Eagles should target him. They are well suited to switch to the 3-4 with all of their undersized defensive ends

  9. East Bay Ray says: Jan 18, 2010 6:23 PM

    The one area of the team that you can definitely say improved under McDaniels and he lets the coordinator walk? I wonder if Nolan, former head coach that he is, bristled at reporting to a cocky kid like McDaniels.

  10. The Centurion says: Jan 18, 2010 6:24 PM

    He went from the most hated man in Denver, to maybe we were wrong about him and back to Most hated man in Denver. Please god get rid of this chump call McDoushbag.

  11. Turd Furguson says: Jan 18, 2010 6:27 PM

    why are the broncos shooting themselves in the head over and over?

  12. favres_right_tendon says: Jan 18, 2010 6:29 PM

    picture becoming more clearer why coaches are doing everything they can to get out of Denver…..McDaniels is killing that team…….. t-minus one more year before he is fired.

  13. The Notorious V.I.C. says: Jan 18, 2010 6:30 PM

    If the Bears had ANY kind of vision or balls, they would go after Nolan and have him install his 3-4 defense in Chicago.
    Especially with their decent depth at linebacker and their lack of defensive lineman (the unfortunate death of Gaines Adams, and the mileage on Alex Brown and Ogunleye).
    Turn Mark Anderson into a pass rushing outside linebacker. Turn Tommie Harris into a 3-4 defensive end a la Richard Seymour.
    Of course, this is just a pipe dream for me because as we all know the Bears are happily stuck in mediocrity with Lovie the buffoon and his stupid Cover2 base scheme.

  14. bfreaky says: Jan 18, 2010 6:33 PM

    Possibly Nolan reuniting with Norv Turner per vacancy of Ron Rivera.
    Nolan and Turner were together when Turner was the HC in Washington, and then in San Fran when Nolan was HC with Turner as OC.
    Ron Rivera was basically run out of Chicago because of his desire to become a HC. He then went to SD to learn the 3-4 system along with his experience with a base 4-3, 4-6 (Eagles), and Cover 2 (Chi) systems.
    I believe he again was a HC candidate for some jobs this year. I think he’d be a good fit in Buffalo and would probably take the job. Possibly Carolina should Fox vacant the postition, or even Jacksonville. I think as long as his current team’s season is over, he’d take any HC job that came his way. Or maybe he is entertaining college jobs.
    Either way, should Rivera leave SD, Mike Nolan would be an obvious replacement.

  15. gweetarman says: Jan 18, 2010 6:51 PM

    Seriously. Josh McDestroys everything he touches.

  16. Tikkanen says: Jan 18, 2010 6:56 PM

    Josh McDaniels and Mike Nolan reportedly have the same agent, so a “mutual understanding to part ways” = firing.

  17. LarryFitzgerald4MVP says: Jan 18, 2010 7:01 PM

    Interesting, he may be a good fit in AZ. Not sure though…

  18. Drafty says: Jan 18, 2010 7:02 PM

    McDips**t hires him, he improves a talent-starved defense, then he’s gone in a year.
    Unless he’s angling for a promotion, how many strikes does McDips**t get, Bowlen?
    Is this part of the Grand Plan? Hire a DC who has success and either let him go or jettison him a year later?
    This ridiculous excuse for a coach/front office is taking the Broncos to depths they haven’t seen since the early ’70s.

  19. Al Davis is my Christ says: Jan 18, 2010 7:11 PM

    why not NE as a destination? already set up for a 3-4 and Belichick wants a guy he can work with, but has the stones to stick to his own.

  20. SATAN says: Jan 18, 2010 7:17 PM

    Nolan fired Bill Davis in his first crack at being a DC @SF. It would be rather ironic if Davis was replaced by Nolan wouldn’t it?

  21. Borg30 says: Jan 18, 2010 7:17 PM

    sure, the giants hired their new dc and mike nolan is now available.
    maybe offer him the job as asst. head coach.

  22. culturalelite says: Jan 18, 2010 7:18 PM

    How much more bleeding has to occur before Bowlen pulls the plug on Gosh McGranules?

  23. william a says: Jan 18, 2010 8:03 PM

    “the development puts Nolan in play for vacancies in Miami, Buffalo, and Chicago.”
    I believe they have a vacancy in New England as well.

  24. Philtration says: Jan 18, 2010 8:20 PM

    # The Notorious V.I.C. says: January 18, 2010 6:30 PM
    If the Bears had ANY kind of vision or balls, they would go after Nolan and have him install his 3-4 defense in Chicago.
    Especially with their decent depth at linebacker and their lack of defensive lineman (the unfortunate death of Gaines Adams, and the mileage on Alex Brown and Ogunleye).
    Turn Mark Anderson into a pass rushing outside linebacker. Turn Tommie Harris into a 3-4 defensive end a la Richard Seymour.
    Of course, this is just a pipe dream for me because as we all know the Bears are happily stuck in mediocrity with Lovie the buffoon and his stupid Cover2 base scheme.
    ————————————————–
    I cannot disagree with a single word of that.

  25. Howie Handles says: Jan 18, 2010 8:36 PM

    “If the Bears had ANY kind of vision or balls, they would go after Nolan and have him install his 3-4 defense in Chicago.
    Especially with their decent depth at linebacker and their lack of defensive lineman (the unfortunate death of Gaines Adams, and the mileage on Alex Brown and Ogunleye).
    Turn Mark Anderson into a pass rushing outside linebacker. Turn Tommie Harris into a 3-4 defensive end a la Richard Seymour.
    Of course, this is just a pipe dream for me because as we all know the Bears are happily stuck in mediocrity with Lovie the buffoon and his stupid Cover2 base scheme.”
    ____________-
    Amen there V.I.C.
    No one, other than Tice, wants to work for dead man coaching. I don’t know what annoys me more, Lovie’s performance, or his arrogance for failing to acknowledge what everyone else sees.

  26. golfrules says: Jan 18, 2010 9:29 PM

    Mc Daniels, I would say has a young mans ego. Absolutely can not admit when he is wrong. Doesn’t even understand the concept. Way way way over his head. Eyes that don’t see, ears that don’t hear. Lifes a bitch when you are like that. You create your own little hell and don’t even know you are in it.

  27. vbedford says: Jan 18, 2010 9:31 PM

    Ha! Suit Nolan.
    1 and done,if only the 49ers were smart
    enough to do that.
    Nice pants there fella.

  28. Klytus says: Jan 18, 2010 10:11 PM

    Nolan leaving is Denver’s loss. Nolan took the defense from #29 to #7. I hope Nolan lands on a team where he is appreciated. He is an excellent coach. Is McDonalds also going to coach the defense? Denver didn’t need to change coaches. Denver needed new defensive players. One step backward for Denver. Will someone smack McDonalds just once!
    GO STEELERS!

  29. Bronco Bern says: Jan 18, 2010 11:01 PM

    This is McD’s waterloo. What an idiot. This seals his fate and he will be gone after next season’t losing record. What an insecure, immature CLOWN.

  30. UncleTuna says: Jan 18, 2010 11:48 PM

    Florio, you have got to get to the bottom of this damnit…
    This has got Lifetime Real Life Movie event written all over it…

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