Jump to content

Woody Paige: Kyle Shanahan is the right choice for Denver Broncos coach


fuego
 Share

Recommended Posts

The Denver Gazette

Kyle Shanahan is the Man.

Mastermind 2.0, Son of Shan.

For almost his entire life Kyle Shanahan has been trained for and training for Job No. 1 - head coach of the Broncos.

In 1984, when he was only 4, Kyle accompanied young dad Mike, the new receivers coach, to the Broncos' old, cramped training facility in North Denver. By 1990, at the Broncos' new headquarters south of Denver, Kyle served as ball boy-gofer, trying to learn every X and each 0 from his father and defensive coordinator Wade Phillips, and from quarterbacks John Elway and Gary Kubiak.

As a receiver at Cherry Creek High School, which won the 5A state championship in 1996 and lost the final in '98, the teenage Shanahan would drive to Dove Valley to work out in the Broncos' weight room and study films and the playbook. He has admitted he didn't study his own school subjects enough, and mother Peggy and sister Krystal would order him and his father, by then the head coach of the Broncos, to stop incessantly talking football during dinner.

On Saturdays Kyle would bring teammates to Broncos' practices. While they asked players "how,'' Kyle would ask coaches "why.'' While the others the dreamed of playing in the NFL, Kyle's ambition was to become an NFL head coach.

The Shanahan family was close friends with John Elway and his wife Janet and their four children. In fact, Dan Reeves, the Broncos coach from 1981-93 who had hired Mike to coach John and later rehired him after Mike was fired by Oakland, accused Mike of collaborating with Elway on offensive schemes and scripts without informing him.

After the Broncos' first victory in a Super Bowl (XXII) on Jan. 25, 1998, two moments were engraved in my memory - Pat Bowlen hoisting the trophy and bellowing "This one's for John,'' and Mike Shanahan hugging his 18-year-old son Kyle.

Kyle would earn a football scholarship from Duke, then transferred to Texas, where he played as a reserve receiver for two seasons. Kyle would catch only 14 passes playing with a future five-time Pro Bowler Roy Williams and long-time NFL tight Bo Scaife (from Denver Mullen).

But Kyle was more intent on becoming a coach. After Kyle's 2003 graduation, Mike helped him become a graduate assistant at UCLA under Karl Dorrell, a former Broncos receivers coach. He then joined Jon Gruden's staff in Tampa Bay as a quality control assistant, and, two years later was hired by the new Texans coach, his old mentor Kubiak, as receivers coach. A year later, Kyle was offered a college coordinator's post, but said publicly then that his goal was to be an NFL head coach. He moved a step closer the next two years in Houston - first as quarterbacks coach, then, in 2008, as the youngest offensive coordinator in the league at 29.

Kyle married his high school sweetheart, Mandy O'Donnell, a graduate of Cherry Creek, then Colorado, on July 5, 2005. They have three children.

Mike Shanahan, who had been given the tag "lifetime coach of the Broncos'' by Bowlen, was fired after the 2008 season.

In 2010 Mike and Kyle coached together in Washington - the dad as head coach, the son as offensive coordinator.

In 2013 they were fired together.

In the meantime, the Mike Shanahan-John Elway relationship became strained. After Elway retired as a player, he was somewhat persona non grata at Dove Valley, although he has denied my characterization. After Shanahan was fired, and later, when Elway returned as executive vice president of the franchise, the former coach suffered the same "person unwelcome'' status.

The two former colleagues, chums and companions are cordial and congenial at the same golf tourney or event (as when Washington played in Denver), but haven't been close company for many years - and have their names on dueling steak restaurants in the Denver area. Both always have declined to talk about what happened to the relationship.

Shanahan the elder has been interviewed for and linked to several head-coaching positions, but has been out of football for three years. Shanahan the younger went on to become the Browns' coordinator for a season, then resigned after dealing with the Manziel Mess in Cleveland. He was hired in Atlanta in 2016.

And Kyle is the coach du jour today after the Falcons became the No. 2 seed in the NFC and the No. 3 overall offense in the league, and quarterback Matt Ryan is "Matty Ice'' again after being "Matty Mud Puddle'' for a couple of years. Ryan is a viable MVP candidate with these statistics (4,944 passing yards, 69.9 percent completion, 38 touchdowns, seven interceptions, 117.1 quarterback rating).

During the bye week, Kyle agreed to interview for head-coach openings with four teams - Jacksonville, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Denver.

Shanahan and Elway, who first met when John was 24 and Kyle was 4, reunite once more this weekend.

Shanahan checks all the boxes of Elway's wish list - bright, brilliant offensive coach, young (37, but a year older than when Mike became a head coach in Oakland), in the playoffs, can communicate with players and develop quarterbacks, operates a hybrid, advanced West Coast offense system that emphasizes zone blocking, running and imaginative passing schemes. His Falcons' offense overwhelmed the Broncos in their first loss of the season - in Denver.

And Shanahan has been preparing for this specific job since he was a kid. He's ready to come home.

Kyle Shanahan is the right man at the right time for the Broncos.

http://gazette.com/woody-paige-kyle-shanahan-is-the-right-choice-for-denver-broncos-coach/article/1593595

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just now, Jpowers said:

Does old Woody ever appear on any of ESPN's shows anymore?  I didn't always agree with him but he was one of the few who actually looked like he was having fun on those shows. I always liked him.

He's still on Around the Horn regularly. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 minute ago, Jpowers said:

Does old Woody ever appear on any of ESPN's shows anymore?  I didn't always agree with him but he was one of the few who actually looked like he was having fun on those shows. I always liked him.

Interesting story, at least to me. I was vacationing in Venice FL several years ago at Thanksgiving and was walking out of the bathroom when Woody comes in. I say 'Woody, what are you doing down here?' And he says, "Going to the bathroom." lol.

Anyway when he came out, asked him to come over to my family. My wife is the only one who knew who he was because I watched around the Horn. Chatted with us a few minutes. Nice guy. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

6 minutes ago, fuego said:

Interesting story, at least to me. I was vacationing in Venice FL several years ago at Thanksgiving and was walking out of the bathroom when Woody comes in. I say 'Woody, what are you doing down here?' And he says, "Going to the bathroom." lol.

Anyway when he came out, asked him to come over to my family. My wife is the only one who knew who he was because I watched around the Horn. Chatted with us a few minutes. Nice guy. 

He really does come off as that type of guy. It's a shame were stuck with D-led. At least Woody can be funny.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Denver:

http://www.denverpost.com/2017/01/07/kiszla-dave-toub-better-fit-for-broncos/

Kiszla: Why Dave Toub is better fit for Broncos coaching gig than Kyle Shanahan or Vance Joseph

While Vance Joseph and Kyle Shanahan are the sexy picks to be the Broncos’ next coach, if Denver is serious about an ASAP return to theSuper Bowl, the best choice for coach is Dave Toub.

When Gary Kubiak quit the job, Broncos president Joe Ellis said: “This is a big-boy business, and we have to strap it on and find a new head coach, and get somebody to come in here that will help us win another championship.”

The megawatt stars of this team are linebacker Von Miller, cornerback Chris Harris Jr. and front-office boss John Elway. The Broncos don’t need flash in a coach. They need a steady hand. That’s why Denver should hire Toub, the 54-year-old special teams coordinator for the Kansas City Chiefs.

I know what you’re thinking: Boring. Toub coaches the punter. And the kick returner. In Kansas City. For crying out loud.

Here’s how I respond: Bill Belichick and John Harbaugh both worked extensively as the coordinator of special teams prior to landing a gig as an NFL head coach. During the past 15 Super Bowls, Belichick and Harbaugh have worked the sideline eight times. Is that any good?

Dave Toub
Andrew Carpenean, The St. Joseph News-Press via AP
In this Aug. 2, 2015, file photo, Kansas City Chiefs special teams coach Dave Toub talks with receiver DaRon Brown during NFL football training camp in St. Joseph, Mo.

Yes, the craziest dreamers among us dream Elway will expand his coaching search beyond the usual suspects of the hot NFL assistants of the moment. The problem?

RELATED ARTICLES

Sean Payton isn’t leaving New Orleans, and if the Broncos are going to make a trade for a proven veteran, I would rather see them surrender draft choices for Dallas quarterback Tony Romo than a coach. While Stanford coach David Shaw is going to be a big deal in pro ranks one of these years, there’s little motivation to leave a college he loves unless some NFL team grants him more power than Elway would allow in Denver.

My advocacy for Toub is not to suggest either Shanahan or Joseph would be a bad choice. Elway believes coaching is as much about building relationships with the 21st century athlete as X’s and O’s. Both Joseph and Shanahan check that box. But if all it took for a coach to relate with players was to be young, then Josh McDaniels would not have been a joke in the Denver locker room.

If the Broncos are convinced Trevor Siemian and Paxton Lynch are all the quarterbacks this team needs to get back to the Super Bowl, then Shanahan has the resume that suggests he can maximize their abilities. But, for a franchise steeped in tradition, an awkward question lingers around Dove Valley: Who was more important to those back-to-back championships in the 1990s? The Hall of Fame quarterback? Or the mastermind coach? The emotional baggage remains heavy after all these years.

While I get Kyle Shanahan is not Mike Shanahan, there’s no denying every move the son made with the Broncos would be shadowed by his father’s legend. Is this dusty old cow town big enough for Elway and two Shanahans?

Well aware the 24/7 nature of being a head coach in the NFL can become an unhealthy obsession, Kubiak would not have returned to the relentless grind and unforgiving responsibility of the lead role on the Denver sideline if an old friend had not called with an offer impossible to refuse. Had Kubiak told the Broncos no in January 2015, Elway did have a Plan B. It was Joseph.

So it makes sense to cast the former Colorado Buffaloes quarterback and current Miami Dolphins defensive coordinator as the leading candidate in this interview process. The second Joseph is introduced as head coach, however, you can bet defensive coordinator Wade Phillips would be out the door. Is that what the Broncos really want?

Toub seems like the candidate who best mirrors the football-world experience and players-first demeanor Elway sought when hiring John Fox and Kubiak to coach the Broncos. Neither Kubiak nor Fox was flashy. Both could be painfully conservative. But they both had a steady hand which guided Denver to the Super Bowl.

Maybe Elway takes a different path with this hire, opting for a football wunderkind.  Shanahan (37 years old) and Joseph (44), however, would both require coaching to grow into the job. Does Elway really have the patience for that chore? Toub is a teacher, and Elway demands rapid development of his draft choices. Born in 1962, Toub is a baby boomer, from Elway’s generation. As Kubiak and Fox could tell you, a key challenge of coaching the Broncos is the ability to manage the team’s demanding boss.

Maybe Joseph and Shanahan are smarter at football than Toub.

We all know who runs the Broncos, though. Elway needs a sidekick, and if Toub’s the best man for that job, he’s your coach.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 hours ago, fuego said:

The Denver Gazette

Kyle Shanahan is the Man.

Mastermind 2.0, Son of Shan.

For almost his entire life Kyle Shanahan has been trained for and training for Job No. 1 - head coach of the Broncos.

In 1984, when he was only 4, Kyle accompanied young dad Mike, the new receivers coach, to the Broncos' old, cramped training facility in North Denver. By 1990, at the Broncos' new headquarters south of Denver, Kyle served as ball boy-gofer, trying to learn every X and each 0 from his father and defensive coordinator Wade Phillips, and from quarterbacks John Elway and Gary Kubiak.

As a receiver at Cherry Creek High School, which won the 5A state championship in 1996 and lost the final in '98, the teenage Shanahan would drive to Dove Valley to work out in the Broncos' weight room and study films and the playbook. He has admitted he didn't study his own school subjects enough, and mother Peggy and sister Krystal would order him and his father, by then the head coach of the Broncos, to stop incessantly talking football during dinner.

On Saturdays Kyle would bring teammates to Broncos' practices. While they asked players "how,'' Kyle would ask coaches "why.'' While the others the dreamed of playing in the NFL, Kyle's ambition was to become an NFL head coach.

The Shanahan family was close friends with John Elway and his wife Janet and their four children. In fact, Dan Reeves, the Broncos coach from 1981-93 who had hired Mike to coach John and later rehired him after Mike was fired by Oakland, accused Mike of collaborating with Elway on offensive schemes and scripts without informing him.

After the Broncos' first victory in a Super Bowl (XXII) on Jan. 25, 1998, two moments were engraved in my memory - Pat Bowlen hoisting the trophy and bellowing "This one's for John,'' and Mike Shanahan hugging his 18-year-old son Kyle.

Kyle would earn a football scholarship from Duke, then transferred to Texas, where he played as a reserve receiver for two seasons. Kyle would catch only 14 passes playing with a future five-time Pro Bowler Roy Williams and long-time NFL tight Bo Scaife (from Denver Mullen).

But Kyle was more intent on becoming a coach. After Kyle's 2003 graduation, Mike helped him become a graduate assistant at UCLA under Karl Dorrell, a former Broncos receivers coach. He then joined Jon Gruden's staff in Tampa Bay as a quality control assistant, and, two years later was hired by the new Texans coach, his old mentor Kubiak, as receivers coach. A year later, Kyle was offered a college coordinator's post, but said publicly then that his goal was to be an NFL head coach. He moved a step closer the next two years in Houston - first as quarterbacks coach, then, in 2008, as the youngest offensive coordinator in the league at 29.

Kyle married his high school sweetheart, Mandy O'Donnell, a graduate of Cherry Creek, then Colorado, on July 5, 2005. They have three children.

Mike Shanahan, who had been given the tag "lifetime coach of the Broncos'' by Bowlen, was fired after the 2008 season.

In 2010 Mike and Kyle coached together in Washington - the dad as head coach, the son as offensive coordinator.

In 2013 they were fired together.

In the meantime, the Mike Shanahan-John Elway relationship became strained. After Elway retired as a player, he was somewhat persona non grata at Dove Valley, although he has denied my characterization. After Shanahan was fired, and later, when Elway returned as executive vice president of the franchise, the former coach suffered the same "person unwelcome'' status.

The two former colleagues, chums and companions are cordial and congenial at the same golf tourney or event (as when Washington played in Denver), but haven't been close company for many years - and have their names on dueling steak restaurants in the Denver area. Both always have declined to talk about what happened to the relationship.

Shanahan the elder has been interviewed for and linked to several head-coaching positions, but has been out of football for three years. Shanahan the younger went on to become the Browns' coordinator for a season, then resigned after dealing with the Manziel Mess in Cleveland. 

And Kyle is the coach du jour today after the Falcons became the No. 2 seed in the NFC and the No. 3 overall offense in the league, and quarterback Matt Ryan is "Matty Ice'' again after being "Matty Mud

How did we drop from #1 to #3 did I miss something?

 

 

7 hours ago, fuego said:

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 hours ago, Jpowers said:

Does old Woody ever appear on any of ESPN's shows anymore?  I didn't always agree with him but he was one of the few who actually looked like he was having fun on those shows. I always liked him.

Never watched him on ESPN...I refuse to watch anything on ESPN :bang:....but I have enjoyed reading his written work (such as this) from time to time. His roots are from here in the south. 

Edited by Vandy
Link to comment
Share on other sites

11 hours ago, tactician said:

He seems like a real person. Unlike Bayless, Stephen A. and the other shock jocks, peddling their contrived attention grabbing hot takes.

Random fact.. years ago(probably early 2000's), I e-mailed him asking for advice as I wanted to get into sports journalism.  Not only did I get a response, it was an incredibly well thought out, lengthy e-mail offering insight.  I wish I still had that e-mail, but the two things I really remember is how he gushed over Bill Plashke.  How incredibly intelligent he was(despite the way they act on TV).  And the second was to read anything and everything.  The most successful of his peers are absolute sponges.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...