The Denver Broncos need a coach like John Fox. And, given his record in 2010 coupled with the absence of a demand for his services outside of Denver, Fox needs the Broncos, too.
Fox, who spent nine seasons as head coach in Carolina, interviewed with the team on Wednesday. Executive V.P. of football operations John Elway called it a “good meeting” on Twitter, which may or may not be a step down from his assessment of the “great presentations” made by Texans offensive coordinator Rick Dennison and Jaguars offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter.
So what separates Fox from Dennison and Koetter?
“I’ve been doing it,” Fox told the Associated Press. “I have a plan, whether it’s a bye week schedule, a training camp schedule. It’s not my first rodeo, so to speak,” Fox said. “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 for success.”
He probably should have stopped there, before anyone became tempted to point out that a “blueprint for success” shouldn’t result in the construction of a dilapidated house.
“When I went into the Panthers we were 1-15 and it was very similar, a second [overall] pick, much the same situation,” Fox said. Technically, Fox can say that he left the Panthers in better shape than how he found them, given that the team was 1-15 when he arrived, and it’s 2-14 when he’s leaving.
The mere fact that Fox provided fairly extensive remarks to the media about his candidacy could be viewed as a red flag by the Broncos. Then again, the standing of G.M. Brian Xanders apparently wasn’t affected by his decision to make a public pitch for his job via an interview with the AP.
For the Broncos, experience as a head coach may not be as important as Fox thinks it should be. Whether he’ll admit it or not, Elway wants someone who’ll know his place in an organization that the Hall of Fame quarterback is running like an offense. If Elway senses that Fox won’t accept the fact that he’d be second fiddle in the signal-caller’s latest two-minute drill, that two-win record in his final season on the job in Carolina will take on great significance when it’s time to sift through the candidates.