Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Vic Fangio fired: Broncos part ways with head coach following disappointing finish to 2021 season

Vic Fangio is no longer the head coach of the Denver Broncos. After suffering a loss to the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 18 that could’ve potentially bought him some time had the team held onto an early lead and managed the upset, Fangio has been fired, the team announced on Sunday. They will now begin their search for another head coach, having failed to find one who can deliver them much success — if any — over the past several seasons.

Fangio joined the Broncos as head coach in 2019 on the heels of the organization pulling an abrupt about-face on Van Joseph, firing Joseph who, at the time, took the reins from Gary Kubiak, a revered coach who led the club to a victory in Super Bowl 50 before finishing 9-7 in the 2016 season to follow — retiring at the time in large part due to health concerns. 

Fangio finishes with a record of just 19-30 in Denver.

“I have tremendous respect for Vic and all he’s accomplished in the NFL,” said general manager George Paton. “Over the past year, I appreciate his partnership, friendship and the tireless work ethic he demonstrated as our head coach. Vic will continue to have great success in this league, and I thank him for everything he did for the Broncos, as well as me personally.”

Broncos president and CEO Joe Ellis mirrored the sentiment regarding Fangio.

“This morning, George and I informed Vic of the decision to part ways with him as head coach of the Denver Broncos,” said Ellis. “For the last three seasons, Vic put his heart and soul into coaching the Broncos. I want to thank Coach Fangio for giving his maximum effort to our organization since the day he was hired.”

The Broncos haven’t made the playoffs since Kubiak’s championship run in 2015 — having also finished last in the AFC West in three of the last six seasons and third in two of them. They’ll have no shortage of possible options to replace Fangio, including a look at Dallas Cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, per CBS Sports NFL insider Jason La Canfora, and that search begins now.

“Looking ahead, there’s a lot of work to be done for us to take the next step,” Paton added. “Winning is not easy, and we’re going to embrace the opportunity to improve in every single area of our operation. Our search to find the next head coach of the Broncos will be a comprehensive, collaborative process. We’re approaching it with an open mind and look forward to spending time with some outstanding candidates. 

“With the foundation in place, the progress that’s been made and the resources we have to get better, I’m excited about the future of our team. We will fin an outstanding leader and head coach for the Broncos and our fans.”

Paton’s sentiments regarding the coaching search were echoed by president and CEO Joe Ellis, with the added tidbit that Ellis won’t attempt to sway Paton’s decision toward one candidate or the other.

“George will have full authority to select the next head coach of the Broncos,” Ellis noted. “This is his decision and his program. I have complete confidence in George’s ability to lead an exhaustive and successful head coaching search. We will give George every available resource and fully support him in hiring the very best head coach to to lead the Broncos.”

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