A persistent theory/idea/whatever has lingered in league circles over the past few weeks regarding the potential fate of the coaching staff in Denver if the Broncos lose on Sunday.
Some think defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio could be in trouble. Others wonder whether coach John Fox would take the fall for a pair of one-and-out playoff appearances in the last three seasons.
The organization invested millions last March in the defense, with the addition of linebacker DeMarcus Ware, cornerback Aqib Talib, and safety T.J. Ward. Rarely if ever has a conference champion done so much to punch through to the next level. Failing to get back to the conference championship game would have consequences.
If one of those consequences is indeed a termination, resignation, or “mutual parting” with Fox, Fox may not be unemployed for long.
“Keep an eye on the Denver Broncos,” said Jay Glazer on FOX NFL Sunday. “That’s what a lot of these teams with openings are doing. There is a thought that, hey, if they lose today, could John Fox become available? If he is, he’ll shoot to the top of many of these lists.”
Five teams still have coaching vacancies: the Jets, Falcons, Bears, 49ers, and Raiders.
Four years ago, Fox wasn’t retained by the Panthers after his contract expired. The Broncos swooped in, and he has taken them to the playoffs in each of his four seasons.