Broncos give defensive backs coach Ron Milus the boot

It was the most stunning late-game touchdown pass in the divisional round since Drew Pearson pushed Nate Wright to the ground more than 37 years ago.

Notwithstanding Pearson’s offensive pass interference in the game that coined the phrase “Hail Mary,” the Vikings failed to put safety Paul Krause in position to prevent a long touchdown pass.  On Saturday, the Broncos committed a similar gaffe by not having safety Rahim Moore deep enough to keep Ravens receiver Jacoby Jones from running past the secondary and catching a game-tying touchdown pass.

It didn’t help that Moore grossly misplayed an underthrown ball, jumping too soon and flailing like a blindfolded kid trying to implode a piñata hanging three feet higher than his stick can reach.

Though Moore may eventually take the fall for the failure of the defense, defensive backs coach Ron Milus is the first one to go.  Per multiple reports, Milus has been fired.

Milus re-joined the Broncos in 2011 with head coach John Fox, who had hired Milus in 2009 with the Panthers.  Though it’s unclear whether Milus already was on thin ice, the unprecedented manner in which the Broncos squandered a late lead undoubtedly sealed his fate.

85 responses to “Broncos give defensive backs coach Ron Milus the boot

  1. After Jacoby Jones’ touchdown in the final 30 seconds to tie the game up I couldn’t see how they might not fire him! He’s the reason that manning might not hoist another Lombardi…

  2. Can’t speak of how well he coaches (technique, schemes, fundamentals, etc.) – but judging how Moore played that ball as the article points out, I fail to see how this is on the DB coach… especially since Moore was getting picked on all game.

    Why not turn it around on Fox – if he was getting picked on all game, why not put in a different safety? Especially if he played so badly PRIOR to that failed Interception attempt,if you can call it that.

    not even a bronco fan, but hey, someone’s gotta be a scapegoat

  3. More Moore’s fault. Had his back to the receiver, jumped too soon, poor timing overall. Had he kept his feet he probably knocks the ball down.

  4. My coach here in Boston would never hang a guy out to dry like that.Man is great to have Coach Belichick here

  5. Isn’t Del Rio the one telling the mic linebacker what the play is and what needs to be done?
    Or is this guy also taking the fall for Champ Bailey’s inept performance?

  6. Peyton manning throws the game losing INT, Calls a kneel down with time and timeouts before end of the game and audibles into a 3-7 run (which is mind boggling that alone). He gets a 40 million dollar raise , his OC (whos as much to blame as peyton) gets a new job……………………meanwhile the safety who was most likely told keep the WR in front of you badly misplays a ball and bad play from champ bailey all game , and the coach loses his job . Ironic huh

  7. Plus, the Ravens exposed Champ Bailey as old and slow on a few bombs. Looks like the Broncs need to do more than just fire the coach.

  8. Well theres your scapegoat. Does anyone believe the Dbacks coach said not to bracket their deep coverage? The D cord calls the plays as a whole. The D cord should be screaming before the play to bracket the deep guys.

  9. Last I checked the d coordinator calls the plays why wasn’t he in a prevent defense and also Peyton turned it over I think 4 times and before the starts the arguement of how Peyton put up 35 points let me remind you the 14 his special teams scored sorry broncos fans but you never beat a good team all year Peyton manning went there for the weak ass schedule and the weak division

  10. Its like firing the receivers coach for a dropped td,had rahim stayed deep this wouldn’t even be a story.

  11. That seems unfair to blame the DB coach.

    The thing is C. Bailey was beaten repeatedly by what were largely physical mistakes. Champ is like what, 57 years old, playing a guy who can run? That’s not the DB coach’s fault.

    More importantly, the cataclysmic breakdown from R. Moore was so jaw-droppingly mind-blowingly inexcusable at the most fundamental of levels – that the Broncos would have to fire Moore’s college coach, high school coach, j.v. coach and his pee wee football coach.

    To Moore’s credit, he is owning it – so credit to him for that. But man, that play (Flacco to Jones for 70 yards and the game-tying TD with 31 seconds left and zero timeouts left for the Ravens) had so many things wrong with it that it could demand its own 3 page Wikipedia entry all by itself. By comparison, it instantaneously made Leon Lett’s legendary mistakes look like Lett should be enshrined in Canton.

    Brutal. Just brutal. So pinning the blame on the DB coach seems a bit like scape-goating.

  12. Its in Peyton’s contract that he will never get blamed for a loss, assistant coachs and head coaches absorb the blame…just ask coach Mora SR.

  13. Classless act, but hey it’s the Broncos.

    Fox should be fired for his cowardly late-game strategy.

  14. The only firing should be the special teams coach for the Ravens. If it wasn’t for horrendous lane discipline and extremely poor tackling on those two returns, that game wouldn’t have even been close.

    Keep telling yourself that you should have won that game Donkey fans, blame someone else as you always do…worst fans in the league. The better team clearly won that game…thank goodness.

  15. So … will the next defensive backs coach come with an elixir of youth that can magically turn back the clock on 34-year-old Champ Bailey? You can’t blame the coach for Champ being outplayed all game.

    I have major respect for what Bailey has accomplished in his career, but he’s a 34-year-old corner? Let’s be real. Did the All Pro voters watch that game? Hello?

  16. Last time I checked, it wasn’t the DB coach that could call a timeout when he notices a DB out of position. Anyone watching the game could see that the DB wasn’t lined up deep enough before the ball was snapped. Fox should have seen it and called a timeout and made sure everyone was lined up in the right spot before the snap. That’s on Fox, not on the DB coach.

  17. Ron learned an important lesson. You can coach young men but you can’t keep them from being dumber than stone.

  18. Did the play call for the safety to allow the guy behind him or was it just a terrible effort by the safety? I guess guys should get fired for 1 bad play though. That makes sense.

  19. First tebow, then Milus, who is the next Bronco employee that will lose his job due to Payton Manning? Maybe Elway, if they go 1 and done again. Knowing Payton’s track record, it’s a good possibility. Haha!

  20. Moore is the reason they lost the game. You have to be playing deep at that time and never let a receiver beat you deep. This guy should have been fired after the game not the special teams coach.

  21. DB coach should have been watching how deep the safeties were or weren’t on that play…sure he didn’t get beat but obviously it was his job to notice/yell..also remind the DBs…sounds like he didn’t do that and that is definitely part of his job…not too mention the DBs were getting abused all day so obviously no in game adjustments going on…unfortunate…also you know the player is getting cut after the Super Bowl..and it certainly wouldn’t have been fair to just put it all on the player.

  22. Lol well someone was gonna get fired And since the defense lost the game…. And fox obviously didn’t wanna fire del rio.

    Dude musts been the most expendable of the staff for del rio

  23. It is Moore’s fault. Heck he could have tackled the guy in bounds and it would have probably saved the game. It takes 15 seconds or so to kill the clock on about a 20 yard play.

    Add another 40 yards to that and the Ravens are probably going to have one play max. If an O-lineman was knocked down or tangled up with a defender it would be game over.

    The play kinda reminded me of the Packers losing to the Vikings in the 1990’s when Terrell Buckley decided that Jim McMahon couldn’t throw the ball more than 30 yards and just stopped covering his guy on a last second heave.

  24. According to the Denver Post, This move has been in the works for a while and Milus’ coaching style clashed with several players. But, please, continue to blame a single play on the “firing”

    Also, Bailey should have been covering Boldin, leaving Chris Harris/Tony Carter to cover Smith. This game had a lot of questionable calls/non-calls, such as, the pick 6 that was the result of a blatant pass interference, kneeling with 31 seconds left and 2 timeouts, the pass interference on Bailey in OT that shouldn’t have been called as pass interference.

  25. Seemed to me like Bailey still has an initial burst but gets 10 or 15 yards downfield and loses a couple steps, at which point he just can’t keep up with the faster receivers any more.

    I didn’t see the Donks play earlier in the year so maybe he was able to keep up through part or most of the season, but he was definitely worn out by the playoffs.

  26. Green Bay, you watching? It’s called accountability. At least it gives the impression they are doing something to rectify the situation.

  27. And the nominees for Internet Simile of the Year Award, Michael Florio, com for “flailing like a blindfolded kid trying to implode a piñata hanging three feet higher than his stick can reach.” Bill…

  28. Yeah because it’s his fault two players were in perfect position to make the play and didn’t right?

    Anything to get attention off of Fox and his cowardly decision to not try to get in FG range with 30 secs, 2 time outs, and Peyton Manning.

  29. Unless Milus coached Moore to run slow and jump 5 yards too early for a ball and then told Champ to get beat badly every time he was challenged downfield, I don’t see how the dude’s to blame for an all-round appalling defensive effort. I live in Denver, though, and the mood is nasty: someone’s head had to roll, I guess.

  30. The QB who do no wrong commits 2 turnovers, 1 in crunch time, the headcoach is essentially a p***y at the end of both halves yet the person taking the fall is the DB’s coach. Good to see passing the buck in Denver is alive and well.

  31. For all of the Champ Bailey haters, he has only allowed one touchdown all year (when he was the primary target). With Champ being slower than Torrey Smith (which a good amount of defensive backs are) than the defensive strategy should be to put safety help over the top. After Torrey Smith scored 2 long touchdowns, he only had one reception for about 10 yards. Whether or not you like it Champ responded beautifully after getting burned twice. I think all of this was was Champ not getting enough help over the top for one of the fastest (if not the fastest) wide receivers in the game. So yes it has to be mainly be put on the defensive coaches.

  32. You spend your whole career teaching or being taught that “one bad play did not lose the game, the total team effort over 60 minutes was what lost the game” and then Fox pulls this crap.

  33. The Broncos have vastly overspent on starts, leaving gaping holes that should have been filled by capable role players. Their 11-game win streak was largely due to playing in the worst division in the history of football. They were exposed in this game as having terribly overrated personnel on both sides of the ball. If it weren’t for Trindon Holliday’s 2 amazing kick returns, this game would have been a complete blowout.

    Call me when Elway fires himself.

  34. Moore and Champ Bailey were the reason that game was lost, they were both horrible. The coach
    has to take the flak for that mess, so he’s fired today. Maybe send Moore and Bailey packing too.

  35. first of all Peytons first int the pick 6, should have been called PI which was blatant. As for the fumble, that shoulda been rules an incomplete pass, his arm was clearly moving forward. That last int tho, all on him. I believe the DB coach was let go cuz of the problems we had covering tight ends and the overall ineptitude of our safeties all year. Mike Adams made some good plays but neither him Leonhard or Moore made and impact all season. The technique by Moore was deplorable by even middle school standards. He should be cut for that, but maybe it lights a fire under his ass and he comes back stronger. That being said Milus did a hood job with Chris Harris and Tony Carter, which brings me too my next point. Why wasnt Harris or Carter put on Smith? Younger faster DBs and Harris is physical, coulda done a better job jammin Smith at the line. I say move Champ to free safety. Gives us a playmaking safety who can cover tight ends. Put Harris and Tracy Porter on the outside with Carter in the Nickel. And yeah the Broncos just called looks like im the new DB coach haha

  36. Gotta love bronco logic. Last year when they won they gave all the credit to the d and not Tebow. This year they win and it is all because of Peyton but choke in the playoffs and blame the defense and not noodle arm. The ravens dared him to beat them deep and he could not so they were ready for his shory game. But by all means blame the #1 defense. Tebow 1 manning and broncos 0!

  37. Underthrown ball? Flacco threw that ball 60 yards in the air. Not sure if you can throw it too much farther.

  38. What a knee-jerk, heat-of-the-moment, bad decision. Fox is a coward for not accepting responsibility for the defeat himself. That sort of thing is not lost on other coaches and players, who undoubtedly lost any respect they had for him.

  39. If he got fired for the play of the DBs (in that game), that is unfair. However, what we don’t know is what he said to whomever before, during, or after that play…..or after the game. Perhaps it was something the coach said/did after the game. Maybe he called out other coaches. Maybe we will find out…maybe we won’t.

  40. Fire Chump Bailey and Peyton in Orange reminds us all how he could never win the big game in college either. Good news is this is as good as it’s gonna get for Horseteeth Elway!! KARMA from the City of Baltimore!

  41. you said “First tebow, then Milus, who is the next Bronco employee that will lose his job due to Payton Manning? Maybe Elway, if they go 1 and done again. Knowing Payton’s track record, it’s a good possibility. Haha!”

    yes you are soooo right. I could not agree with you more. several people are being axed due to Peyton Manning. That would be like if my dean lost his job because of one of my colleagues (i am a professor). The whole thing makes no sense. How many more people will lose their job because of Peyton. Tebow lost his because Peyton wanted to be KING, and did not want a backup. Milius loses his job because Elway does not want it to look like recruiting Peyton was a bad decision so he fires Milius the secondary coach. maybe next Fox will go. LOL

  42. I love how people say its the Safetys fault or Manning or Bailey’s.bottom line its not one persons fault its the entire teams fault. This team picked the wrong game to have a total meltdown. From the many penalties to Champ getting burned for two touchdowns to Miller & Doom getting zero pressure. Yes even Manning made mistakes. The coaches also made poor decisions as well. Listen the Ravens did what was needed and the Broncos as a team imploded ar the worst possible time. They will all learn from this and make adjustments.
    This is in no way one players fault. This is not the first team to fall apart an it wont be the last. Just about every single team has gone through this even in the playoffs. Changes will be made as other teams have made and they willl learn from it. This team still needs defensive tackles and corners an a middle linebacker as well. The past two year have shown improvement an next year should be the same.

  43. Wait a minute, Milus gets canned because Champ Baily got SMOKED all day long???!!! Last I checked Milus can’t backpedal “for” him ! Milus doesn’t call the coverages that’s up to the DC, hell why not just fire him instead. LOL

  44. Yep, it’s all the secondary coaches fault not John Fox’s horrible coaching decisions… what a joke.

  45. Nah, the cowardly decision to take a knee with a Hall of Fame QB and two timeouts left had NOTHING to do with the loss whatsoever.

  46. if you recall,opening day,steelers mike wallace was getting behind the other corner,bailey wouldnt even take him,and wallace was a finger tip on an underthrown bomb away from toasting denvers other corner in denver too.and one or two other shots down field on bailey and the other guy were overthrown and off target,otherwise everyone wouldve known sooner denvers corners could be beat with just straight 9 routes.

  47. Briang123 you stupid ignorant dush.

    I blame the man who “grossly misplayed an underthrown ball, jumping too soon and flailing like a blindfolded kid trying to implode a piñata hanging three feet higher than his stick can reach” a little more, regardless of color.

    I love Obama, but can’t stand idiots like you who pull out a race card most likely to explain why you fail at life.

    There are plenty of successful individuals of every color in this world, and hey, white chicks in eastern europe in the sex slave trade have it as bad as anybody.

    Equality is here. The world is full of idiots. Quit making colorful excuses dummy.

  48. Sure Manning made some mistakes. However I dont put the blame on him.

    The offense with some help from special teams put up 35 points.
    The defense failed numerous times to stop a mediocre offense. Other then Ray Rice Baltimore isnt an offensive power house.

    Also have to blame Fox for not going for the first down late in the fourth quarter when they had a lead.

  49. What a mess in Denver. They should fire the head coach. The reason that the Broncos didn’t try with 31 seconds left is cause Manning can’t throw deep when it’s cold. Again, though, fire the head coach.

  50. Why is the cornerback not getting any criticism? I get that he had the underneath coverage, but he shouldn’t have let Jones get so far behind him that he wasn’t even able to tackle him after jones had to stop for the ball.

  51. Peyton manning throws the game losing INT, Calls a kneel down with time and timeouts before end of the game and audibles into a 3-7 run (which is mind boggling that alone). He gets a 40 million dollar raise , his OC (whos as much to blame as peyton) gets a new job……………………meanwhile the safety who was most likely told keep the WR in front of you badly misplays a ball and bad play from champ bailey all game , and the coach loses his job . Ironic huh

    Losing int wouldn’t have happened without moore, definitely wasn’t his kneel down call (that would b the coach), and the 3 an7 also wasn’t his call according to Denver. Don’t get me wrong Peyton gets his fare share of the blame but at least get it right. Ive seen playoff games that Peyton blew but this was more on the so called top 5 D

  52. I thought I was watching the Cowboys Safeties play the ball like tha. Out of position all the damn time!

  53. When Manning left the field, the Broncos had the lead, what else can he do?? Horrible defensive mistakes, Champ Bailey was getting killed all night, Rahim Moore with the most un-athletic play a safety could make. This is just like in Indy, last playoff loss to the Jets, Manning drives the offense down field, kick a field goal to take the lead and the special teams allow a 60 yd run back and then the defense plays prevent to allow the great Marc Sanchez to complete 3 or 4 passes to get them into field goal range to win the game.

  54. Keep the Racism out of it. There were alot of things done wrong by the broncos. Peytons int’s, Bailey getting beat constantly, and coaching to go to overtime. P.S.- the guy who caught the winning touchdown is African-American and was thrown to by a white guy.

  55. The NFL salary cap is $120 million. Peyton Manning makes an average of $19 million per season. Champ Bailey makes an average of $11 million per season. How are you supposed to afford a safety better than Rahim Moore when you have two players combining to make $30 million which leaves you $90 million to pay the other 50+ players on your roster? When you make $30 million, you have to play better than the players who make $1 million or less and carry the team.

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