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Xanders goes public to save his job

Brian Xanders AP

Several weeks ago, while we were trying to sort out the division of authority in Denver, team spokesman Patrick Smyth told PFT that coach Josh McDaniels and G.M. Brian Xanders are expected to reach a consensus as to all personnel moves.

We asked Smyth who had the ability to break any ties, and Smyth said he didn’t know, and that it hadn’t happened.

With McDaniels now gone, Xanders is taking a different approach.  He recently told the Associated Press that McDaniels had the ultimate power.

“The dynamics were he had final say on player personnel issues,” Xanders said.  “I was respectful of that, and I was going to work under those parameters.  We did our best to build our draft board and free-agency ranking lists and match the player personnel fits with scheme requirements we have.”

In other words, blame for the mess that is the team’s current roster falls directly on the fired coach’s shoulders.  And in case you didn’t get the point the first time, Xanders made it again.

“We have a 17-person personnel staff that had been going through all those processes,” Xanders said.  “But he had final say.  I’ll just say I was respectful of the organizational setup.”

It’s possible that Xanders and McDaniels technically had shared responsibilities, but that McDaniels dominated the relationship in the same way many believe Browns coach Eric Mangini dominated the relationship with former G.M. George Kokinis.  Thus, even if McDaniels didn’t actually have final say, as a practical matter he did.

Still, the fact that Xanders had gone on the record to distances himself from the bad moves that have been made over the past two years shows that Xanders realizes that he’s in grave danger.  (Is there another kind?)

“Right now, everything’s uncertain until the end of the year,” Xanders said. “The organization’s going through a lot of change, and I hope I can be here.  I love being with the Broncos, and we’ll see how it ends up.”

Unless the team already has decided to keep Xanders and deliberately devised this approach as a way to get the fans and the media to accept it, Xanders’ decision to publicly push for his position probably wasn’t prudent.  It comes off as desperate, and perhaps even naive, for Xanders to think that an intermercial will make a difference.

Then again, given some of the decisions lately being made and contemplated by the organization, maybe it will.

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12 Responses to “Xanders goes public to save his job”
  1. pondbridge says: Dec 19, 2010 8:51 AM

    Interesting timing, coming just before Tebow’s debut. So just what season-saving superstars would Xanders have drafted (or traded for) instead? ‘Tis the season for gerbil-like bureaucrats to try CYA tactics. Had Josh’s moves worked out, this turkey would have taken credit.

  2. coloradobucsfan says: Dec 19, 2010 9:04 AM

    Denver needs John Gruden, end of story!

  3. ralphwilsonsucks says: Dec 19, 2010 9:09 AM

    Bowlen must be rolling in his sleep how far the franchise has fallen.

  4. dryheaveone says: Dec 19, 2010 9:21 AM

    The most amazing thing about this item?…..That there is somebody out there with a name that begins with an X….must have been a bitch when they had him lineup in alphabetical order.

  5. nesuperfan says: Dec 19, 2010 9:34 AM

    It has been widely reported that McDaniels had control, whether official or not. They should evaluate Xanders on what he actually did.

  6. grogansheroes says: Dec 19, 2010 9:44 AM

    Beep, Beep, Beep, don’t let that truck backing up hit you Xanders.

  7. silkyjohnson937 says: Dec 19, 2010 10:06 AM

    someone inside the broncos organization need to find out who was responsible for giving detroit alphonso smith who gave a draft pick for maroney and who traded peyton hillis for brady quinn haha and fire the people respoonsible for those roster moves because not one went in favor for the broncos haha

  8. realitypolice says: Dec 19, 2010 10:19 AM

    A classless and unnecessary move.

    If it’s true, the people in the organization who will decide his fate already know it and probably won’t appreciate being reminded of it in the media.

    And if they are on the fence, this lapse in judgement of running to the press won’t help his cause.

  9. garyln7 says: Dec 19, 2010 11:08 AM

    So if his public statements won’t make a difference one way or the other so what difference does it make for him to go ahead and make those statements? What then would he really have to lose? I would distance myself from that bone-head McDaniels too!

  10. moneymike23 says: Dec 19, 2010 11:21 AM

    I read somewhere that he was the guy who threw in Peyton Hillis in that Brady Quinn trade but I’m sure he wouldn’t be stupid enough to draft Tebow in the 1st round.

  11. gigity says: Dec 19, 2010 11:26 AM

    Coaching for Belichick doesn’t make you Belichick. How much more evidence does the league need?

  12. footballgeek11 says: Dec 19, 2010 11:33 AM

    Brian Xanders helped push out a competent man who was serving as GM. What comes around goes around.

    Pat Bowlen has to fire anyone who had their fingerprints on hiring McDaniels and allowing the surge of power after firing Mike Shanahan for having and using that same power.

    I bet Mike is smiling thinking, I wonder if they miss me yet?

    Pat: Please clean house!

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