BRONCOS

Report: 49ers DC DeMeco Ryans is now “top candidate” in Broncos search

Jan 26, 2023, 11:01 AM

We might finally have a favorite.

After waiting days for any meaningful updates in the Denver Broncos head-coaching search, 9NEWS and 104.3 The Fan insider Mike Klis has broken some significant news.

Klis reports that 49ers defensive coordinator DeMeco Ryans has emerged as the “top candidate” for the Broncos. Klis stresses that Dan Quinn, Sean Payton and Jim Caldwell “remain in the mix” but that Ryans appears to be Denver’s “top choice.”

The news on the Broncos coaching search has been strangely quiet all week, but this report could explain why. Ryans and the Niners are still alive in the NFC playoffs, facing Philadelphia in the title game on Sunday. Per NFL rules, Denver can’t speak to Ryans again until next week. If the Walton-Penner Family Ownership Group zeroed in on Ryans after their initial chat last Thursday, this is all adding up.

Klis reports that if the Broncos do speak with Ryans again, CEO Greg Penner will be joined by his father-in-law (and majority owner) Robson Walton and wife Carrie Walton-Penner at the interview. In the first round, it was Penner, GM George Paton and part-owner Condoleezza Rice in the room.

The Texans remain interested in Ryans, something Klis also notes. Ryans played for Houston for six seasons after being drafted by them in 2006. So, the Broncos could certainly have competition for his services. Ryans previously canceled interviews with the Colts and Cardinals, a good sign for Denver.

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Report: 49ers DC DeMeco Ryans is now “top candidate” in Broncos search