Zach Bye: Why the Broncos could bring back Jerry Rosburg

Jan 24, 2023, 5:31 PM

It’s been all about the big names. The Broncos head coach search has focused on Jim Harbaugh, Sean Payton and Dan Quinn. For three weeks, those are the people who’ve been the topic of conversation.

As the process has drug on, with no announcement looming, other names have gotten attention. DeMeco Ryans is gaining steam, especially after his defense dominated the Cowboys in the playoffs last Sunday. David Shaw seems like a viable option, mostly due to the Stanford connection with the Greg and Carrie Penner, as well as Condoleezza Rice. And Jim Caldwell is in the mix, with the unofficial seal of of approval from Peyton Manning.

Then this week, another name emerged. Suddenly, Jerry Rosburg was back in the mix.

Most dismissed this notion as the Broncos doing the long-time coach a solid. After doing an admirable job as the team’s interim head coach during the final two weeks of the season, righting the ship after a disastrous performance on Christmas Day that ultimately got Nathaniel Hackett fired, Penner and company let him make his pitch for the job. But realistically, no one considered him a serious candidate.

On Tuesday, however, Zach Bye put forth a theory as to why Rosburg might actually be in the mix. He offered an explanation for why that could make some sense.

“The Broncos have a marriage date looming; they have to make a decision,” the co-host of Stokley and Zach on 104.3 The Fan said. “But what if they don’t love anyone? What if the people they loved are no longer in the mix?”

That would explain why the Broncos haven’t made an offer. It would provide a reason as to why they don’t have any round-two interviews scheduled.

“(They) wanted Jim Harbaugh, but he went back to Ann Arbor, and Sean Payton didn’t happen, as there’s a disconnect and bad vibes,” Bye continued. “So they don’t want to make a lifetime commitment to any of the other guys.”

That opens the door for a stopgap option. The Broncos can avoid making a long-term commitment to their third or fourth option if they go another route.

“They decide to make Jerry Rosburg the longest ‘interim’ head coach in the history of professional football,” Bye added. “It’s like a bridge quarterback.”

That would allow the Broncos to find out if the last two weeks of the season were a mirage or if Rosburg really was the solution to Denver’s problems. The team finished the season 1-1, losing to the Chiefs and beating the Chargers. But they kept things close in Kansas City and averaged 27.5 points per game after Rosburg gave Justin Outten the play-calling duties.

If Hackett was truly the problem, then bringing back Rosburg, and conceivably the rest of the coaching staff, would allow the Broncos to build upon those final two games. They could see what Russell Wilson and the offense could do, as well as Ejiro Evero’s defense, if they had a cohesive plan in place.

It makes sense for a lot of reason. But the radio host provided perhaps the most-compelling argument.

“Are you going to get married to someone that you don’t love?” Bye asked.

At this point, the Broncos might not love any of their new options. So perhaps they decide to stick with the head coach they already have in place.



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Zach Bye: Why the Broncos could bring back Jerry Rosburg