The Denver Broncos have requested permission to interview two candidates for their open head coaching position. According to Adam Schefter of ESPN, they requested permission to interview New England Patriots linebackers coach Jerod Mayo.
In addition, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reported that they requested permission to interview Dallas Cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, as well.
The Broncos are searching for a new head coach after they officially fired Vic Fangio on Sunday, January 9.
Under Fangio, the Broncos had a 19-30 record over three seasons. This season, they finished with a 7-10 record, which was last in the AFC West.
Despite Fangio’s flaws, the Broncos’ defense was among the league’s best this season. Their defense allowed the third-fewest points per game in the NFL this season. The team’s issues stem from their lack of offensive production.
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So, it is interesting that the organization is interested in two defensive coaches. Nevertheless, both candidates have appealing qualities.
Jerod Mayo is a recognizable name for many NFL fans. Mayo played inside linebacker for the Patriots for eight seasons (2008 to 2015). Mayo was a very impactful player for the Patriots. He was named a First-Team All-Pro in 2010, as he led the league in total tackles with 174.
In addition, Mayo was selected to the Pro Bowl in 2012, and he was a member of the Patriots’ Super Bowl team in 2014.
Mayo officially retired in 2016 at the age of 29.
Mayo did not stay away from the Patriots’ organization for long. He was hired as a linebackers coach in 2019.
This season, the Patriots defense has been outstanding. They are allowing only 17.8 points per game, which is the second-fewest in the NFL.
If Mayo was hired as the Broncos’ head coach, he would become the youngest active head coach in the league right now at 35 years old. Los Angeles Rams head coach Sean McVay is approximately one month older than Mayo.
Dan Quinn served as the head coach of the Atlanta Falcons for six seasons from 2015 to 2020. Early in his tenure, the Falcons enjoyed some success. They went 11-5 and made a Super Bowl appearance during the 2016 season, but the team’s performance slowly declined over the next few years.
Interestingly, Quinn’s Falcons were very productive on offense but struggled on defense. Under Quinn, the Falcons had the number one scoring offense in the NFL in 2016.
Quinn was fired after the Falcons got off to an 0-5 start to the 2020 season. He was hired as the Cowboys’ defensive coordinator over the offseason.
Quinn has been impressive in his first year with the Cowboys. This season, the Cowboys are leading the league in takeaways with 34.
In his past stints, Quinn has been the leader of elite defensive units. He was the defensive coordinator for the Seattle Seahawks in 2013 and 2014. Under Quinn, the Seahawks defense gave up the fewest points per game in the NFL during both of those seasons.
Quinn’s resume as a defensive coordinator is remarkable, but his history with the Falcons leaves some concerns. Nevertheless, he does have a 43-42 overall record as a head coach.