Mike McCoy is one of this offseason’s hottest names, with the Broncos offensive coordinator in the mix for head coaching jobs in Buffalo, Arizona and Chicago, and perhaps more.
While the opinion of potential employers remains more important, he got a strong endorsement from someone who knows a thing or two about offense and winning — Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning.
“I think he’s ready; I think he’s paid his dues,” Manning said, via Tom Kensler of the Denver Post. “Mike’s a good leader. He’s had some good coaches that have been mentors to him, different coaches that he’s worked with in his years in the NFL that I think he’s incorporated some of their leadership philosophies and his own philosophy.
“I tell you, he’s a worker. We spend a lot of hours together — early mornings, late nights — trying to get kind of our plan in place for what kind of offense we were going to be. There is no substitute for work ethic, and Mike certainly has that. . . .
“In my opinion, he deserves a shot at one of these head coaching jobs.”
Manning’s point about McCoy drawing from different backgrounds is a valid one.
McCoy grew up in the West Coast Offense, both as a player and a coach. But in working under Coryell-style coordinator Dan Henning in Carolina, McCoy said he saw benefits to that approach that challenged many of his preconceived notions about what worked in the NFL and what didn’t.
Then being able to adapt a pro offense to Tim Tebow, and being able to win a playoff game, showed even more versatility.
Being able to adjust to problems without falling back into a dogmatic routine is more essential for any head coach than Xs and Os, and if Manning says McCoy has that part figured out, that means something.