BRONCOS

Report: Broncos’ pursuit of new coach will be ‘ultra aggressive’

Jan 1, 2023, 7:58 AM | Updated: 8:01 am
Carrie Walton Penner, Greg Penner and Rob Walton...
(Photo by AAron Ontiveroz/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
(Photo by AAron Ontiveroz/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images)

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Broncos’ search for their next head coach will apparently not be a timid one.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter, citing sources, reported Sunday morning that Broncos ownership will be “ultra aggressive” in its search for a replacement for Nathaniel Hackett.

Writes Schefter:

While there is a salary cap on players, there is no salary cap on what owners can spend on a head coach, their staff and the rest of the organization — and the Walton-Penner group that purchased the Broncos last summer is not expected to spare any expense or cut any corners in its effort to upgrade the franchise.

And that is the key thing: that coaching is one area in which the largesse of the NFL’s wealthiest ownership group makes an impact.

The Walton-Penner group cannot do what, for example, New York Mets owner Steve Cohen did in baseball. There, Cohen spared no expense in recent free-agency cycles. His outlay gave the Mets a payroll so far about the luxury-tax threshold that Cohen will pay a reported $111 million in luxury-tax fees.

But in coaching, in facilities, in staff — the Walton-Penner group has no limits.

Schefter specifically mentions a potential pursuit of ex-Saints coach Sean Payton. Landing Payton would require some form of compensation to the New Orleans Saints, as they own his rights, and a trade would be necessary.

It would not be unprecedented; in 2002, the Buccaneers acquired the rights to Jon Gruden for a haul that included two first-round picks and two second-rounders. Two years earlier, the Patriots nabbed Bill Belichick for a deal that included a first-round choice. Of course, the Broncos’ draft stock is depleted because of the Russell Wilson trade. However, they replenished part of it with the trade-deadline swap of Bradley Chubb to Miami.

The Broncos dismissed Hackett last Monday, ending his tenure after just 15 games.

That decision was in and of itself aggressive, as it was the second-quickest coach firing since 1978. Only Urban Meyer’s departure from Jacksonville was faster in that span.

But now, it looks like Greg Penner, Carrie Walton Penner and Rob Walton are taking it up a notch.

***

Broncos

Sean Desai...
Andrew Mason

With Brian Flores out of mix, Broncos’ focus turns to Sean Desai

With Brian Flores taking the Vikings’ defensive-coordinator job, current Seahawks assistant Sean Desai appears to be set to join Sean Payton’s staff.
22 hours ago
Sean Payton...
Cecil Lammey

Orange and Blue Today – February 6, 2023

In This Episode: Cecil Lammey and Andrew Mason break down the latest news and notes for the Denver Broncos. Follow @CecilLammey
22 hours ago
Greg Penner...
Will Petersen

Both Greg Penner and George Paton deny Broncos wanted DeMeco Ryans

Sean Payton joked he was talking with Penner and Paton all along, and Ryans must've been communicating with Broncos part-owner Sir Lewis Hamilton
22 hours ago
Sean Payton...
Andrew Mason

Details, toning down social media and hating your rivals: Sean Payton said exactly what Broncos Country needed to hear

Sean Payton vowed to focus on the details -- including getting the plays in on time. "I don’t anticipate having the crowd count down a play clock," he said.
22 hours ago
Sean Payton...
Will Petersen

Payton speaks on how he’ll use Wilson’s strengths, brings up a karaoke bar

Nathaniel Hackett was perhaps making Russell Wilson run plays he didn't want to or wasn't prepared for; Sean Payton won't be doing that
22 hours ago
Drew Brees and Zach Strief...
Jake Shapiro

Broncos to hire longtime Sean Payton player to coach offensive line

Denver has their man to rebuild the Broncos upfront, Sean Payton is expected to bring in Zach Strief to coach the offensive line
22 hours ago
Report: Broncos’ pursuit of new coach will be ‘ultra aggressive’