The Broncos are out of the playoffs for the second consecutive year, and head coach Vance Joseph is on the hot seat. And now a very surprising name has been floated as a potential replacement: Mike Shanahan.
Shanahan, of course, won two Super Bowls with the Broncos, when Broncos General Manager John Elway was his quarterback. And Elway reportedly considered firing Joseph after last season, and hiring Shanahan to replace him.
Longtime Denver sports columnist Woody Paige reported that Elway and Shanahan met a year ago to discuss the possibility of Shanahan returning to the sideline. Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reported that he heard the same.
Standing in the way was Broncos CEO Joe Ellis, who said if Elway was going to move on from Joseph, he needed to conduct a full coaching search, and not just hand the job to Shanahan. (Elway would have to interview a minority before hiring Shanahan to comply with the Rooney Rule.) Elway eventually came around to giving Joseph a second year in Denver.
But now that Joseph’s second year has ended out of the playoffs, the Broncos may be ready for a new head coach. Could Shanahan be the guy? It’s entirely possible. The 66-year-old Shanahan has said he would like to coach again, if he finds the right situation.
Elway is likely to begin conducting another coaching search in two weeks. Shanahan may be on his list of candidates.