The Denver Broncos started their mandatory mini-camp on Tuesday and it will run through Thursday. Once it concludes, the players and the coaches will take some time off before training camp begins in late July. The Broncos have been in the news as much as any team during the off-season, especially with the free agent signing of Peyton Manning.
Everyone has dissected every move made by Denver but there is one man who has been overlooked, John Fox.
The truth is that’s the way Fox probably prefers it, he is not your typical NFL head coach. Most head coaches, today, are armed with big egos and need to be in control of everything but Fox is different and he is perfect for the Broncos. Don’t get me wrong, Fox is confident in his abilities but he doesn’t have to shove it down everyone’s throats to prove it. When John Elway took over the Broncos in January of 2011, he knew he had to find a guy who could unite a divided locker room and change the attitude. He found his guy in John Fox. It seems like a long time ago now but when Josh McDaniels left under the cover of darkness in December 2010, the Broncos were at rock bottom and the road back looked long and hard. The next coach had to be the right mix of positive energy and football knowledge to turn Denver around. Fox handled a delicate situation perfectly and had the Broncos headed in the right direction quicker than anyone could have imagined.
Fox understands that it’s the players that win, not the system. It was Fox who scrapped his offense to fit Tim Tebow knowing that was the only way they were going to win football games. Too many coaches are so tied to “their” system that they would never think about changing systems in mid-season. The result was a team that went from 1-4 to AFC West Champions and a thrilling playoff win over the Pittsburgh Steelers. Tebow and many others have been given credit for the turn around and rightfully so, but none of it happens without the leadership of Fox.
Manning chose the Broncos for a lot of reasons that we have outlined but make no mistake, Fox is a big reason that #18 is in orange and blue. He provides the Broncos with stability, a winning track record and unquestioned leadership. Fox doesn’t have the big personality of a Bill Parcells or a Mike Shanahan but he is exactly what the Broncos needed.
The stories about the Denver Broncos as we get ready for training camp will continue to focus on Manning, Jack Del Rio, the defense and the revamped offense but there’s one story that won’t get told enough. That’s the story of John Fox; he is the perfect coach for the perfect team at the perfect time!