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Old 01-19-2010, 02:19 AM   #1
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Default First reasonable report on Nolan's leaving

good read


http://www.denverpost.com/premium/broncos/ci_14219106

As the Broncos' confusing 2009 season wore on, Josh McDaniels and Mike Nolan began to realize that aside from their agent, they didn't have much in common.

In large part because of differences in coaching styles, philosophies and game-day play calling, McDaniels, the Broncos' head coach, and Nolan, the team's defensive coordinator, decided at the conclusion of their meeting Monday to end their business relationship after just one season.

"I definitely was surprised," Broncos inside linebacker Andra Davis said. "Didn't see this coming at all. It seemed like everything was good, everything is OK. I guess it's best if it was mutually agreed upon."

McDaniels and Nolan moved quickly to fill their voids. Nolan will interview with the Miami Dolphins for their defensive coordinator position this week, while the Broncos are likely to soon name former New England assistant Dean Pees as their fifth defensive coordinator in five years.

"I can't say anything other than Josh and I mutually agreed to part ways," said Nolan, who added he hadn't yet had time to contact his children when reached by The Denver Post.

Even from the start, McDaniels and Nolan seemed like a curious partnership. McDaniels was 32 when hired to be the Broncos' head coach last year. He is the son of a legendary high school coach from Canton, Ohio, and owed his entire NFL coaching background to the Patriots and their head coach, Bill Belichick.

McDaniels is system specific in the way he puts together his roster and game plan.

Nolan, 50, is an NFL lifer. His dad, Dick Nolan, was an NFL head coach from 1968-80. Mike Nolan coached for six NFL teams over 23 seasons, 11 as a defensive coordinator, six from 1987-92 in an earlier stint with Denver and four as head coach for the San Francisco 49ers.

"I have great respect for Mike and wish him success in the future," McDaniels said in a team media release.

Although McDaniels and Nolan never previously worked together, they were introduced through their mutual agent, Bob LaMonte. By all accounts, McDaniels and Nolan got along fine through the good times of their 6-0 start and during the rough period of their miserable 2-8 finish. They did not argue or butt heads.

According to an NFL source, the relationship between McDaniels and Nolan, while not contentious, began to gradually develop an irritant, like a scratch that wouldn't stop itching. Nolan believed he would have more autonomous control of the defense. And McDaniels, like Belichick, is a head coach who oversees all phases of a football operation.

During their 6-0 start, the Broncos allowed just 11.0 points per game. The defense was trampled down the stretch, allowing 25.8 points in the final 10 games.

Soon after the Broncos' abrupt end to their 8-8 season, McDaniels started receiving requests from other teams seeking permission to interview Nolan. Besides the Dolphins, the Bills also expressed interest. The Bears are possible too.

It appeared Nolan, who had just one year remaining on his contract, may have concluded his second coaching stint with the Broncos wasn't a good fit.


McDaniels agreed. After the Broncos' coaches took time off last week, they reconvened Monday. McDaniels met with Nolan and, at the end of their discussion, each agreed it would be best to separate.

McDaniels believes in the offensive and defensive systems he helped coach in New England. Pees worked with him on the Patriots' staff from 2004-08. When Pees, who had been the Pats' defensive coordinator since 2006, and Belichick agreed to part ways last week, McDaniels had the man to carry out his defensive beliefs.

.................................................. ........................................ continued at DPost.com
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Old 01-19-2010, 02:27 AM   #2
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It seems like this was mostly a mutual football decision. Both Josh and Mike seem to like and respect each other but Nolan wanted more autonomy over the D and Josh has a vision and style that works as a total system including the O and D as two sides of the same coin.

After two weeks to review the year, and no doubt with some lucrative back room carrots from Miami and others for Nolan's services .. ones that likely give him a better shot at taking over said team at some point and with perhaps less rebuilding on miami's D required .. they agreed to part ways.

Josh works best when everyone is on the same page. Nolan is a excellent defensive coach but so is Pees. As surprising as this change is, it doesn't at all necessarily mean disaster or a step back on the defense.

And at least now Josh will have all his pegs in a row and has a D coordinator who knows the system inside and out and has bought in 100%.

Josh now either sinks or swims in the next two years, but that was always the case and he know s with Pees he gets a system guy from the same system running the 3-4 as he learned it as well.

Perhaps the defensive failure the last half of the year to adapt and get better after teams started figuring out what Nolan was doing, particularly with the big break downs the last four games, played a big part in this 'mutual' parting?

While the D play significantly better the whole year over all and was the key cog in many of our early wins, its big failures in the Chokeland, Philly and KC games, and even the Indy game at the end where Orton had directed a near comeback, were more responsible for us missing the playoffs than the offense.

I'm not at all saying that is all on Nolan by any means, only that in the coaches year end review, it would have been hard not to notice the big decline in scoring D, going from 11 points allowed in the first six games to 23.5 points allowed in the last six games on D versus the offense which in the first 6 games averaged 22.2 points with a fully intact starting o-line but showed some improvement in the last 6 averaging 26 points a game with a significantly impaired o-line that trashed the run game and thus put a lot more pressure on the passing game as well.

The defense didn't have major injuries, but the weakness of the personnel in the front seven that had been masked a lot by the new schemes early on got more exposed as the season wore on and team figured out how to exploit them. Nolan wasn't able to adjust and compensate again for the talent gap up front. It not all his fault by any means, but his leaving doesn't mean fire and brimstone here either.

Though it does provide significant fodder fro the Nervous Nellies to start up the Fire Josh campaign. Why not wait and see and at least learn to look a little more deeply before assuming the worst.

You are going to have to wait anyway .... :-)

Last edited by Hulamau; 01-19-2010 at 02:33 AM..
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Old 01-19-2010, 02:29 AM   #3
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Back at square zero.
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Old 01-19-2010, 02:29 AM   #4
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Excellent post. Good information!
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Old 01-19-2010, 02:44 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bpc View Post
Back at square zero.
BS Chris, it is not square zero.

This sounds like a deliberate mutual decision after a careful review .. what Josh promised that every areas would be looked at thoroughly for any square pegs and round holes that causes this team to not be able to rebound well.

The break down in o-line play on offense and the big drop in defensive consistency, with them having major mental and/or coaching errors at the worst time in the last half of the year .. particularly the last four games where their inability to close the deal prevented us from winning all four games.

Yes the D helped at times too but the were not ready to play the first half of the Indy game and the last quarter of the Fader and Philly games either.

The last KC game the front 7 didn't show up at all!

We still have a 3-4 and are building on what strides they did make this year. In Pees, if he is the guy, we have a proven expert in the 3-4 and specifically in working within the same total system philosophy as Josh.

So you're crying about its starting over from 'square zero' again is ludicrous and comes just from your hate hard-on for all things McD.

None of us know how Josh will work out long term. He's made his share of mistakes, as well as down a ton of good things too. This parting of Nolan may not be one of the mistakes and sounds like it was truly a mutual recognition that it might be in everyone's best interest for him to move on.

Time will tell.

You used to be more thoughtful Chris, why not wait until the dust settles a little before proclaiming this a disaster?

Last edited by Hulamau; 01-20-2010 at 01:55 AM..
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Old 01-19-2010, 02:45 AM   #6
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Nice write-up. Doesn't sound that bad, really.

Look, folks... McDaniels has a way he wants things done. You can hate him for it, but it is what it is. He's not in the business of diluting his systems/coaching beliefs.

Maybe he's an intolerable a-hole, and maybe he's just a guy who is going to build the kind of franchise he wants. Either way, I'm fine with giving this time to find out.

Felt like we made some progress in year one, as bumpy as it was. Next year will be telling, and we'll have a lot more info to go on. If we regress in a major way, then sure... you have to wonder if McD is just pushing too hard.

But, if things start to come together, as they did for Shanahan in year two... then I think we'll be in for something pretty cool.

It's tough for fans to accept. We all want to know right now. But the truth is, only time will tell if McD is a great coach. Personally... I DO think he'll end up a winner in this league. I just hope it's with us.
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Old 01-19-2010, 02:52 AM   #7
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We simply lost the coach who improved our defense beyond our wildest dreams in one amazing season to unreconcilable "philisophical differences." What's the fuss?
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Old 01-19-2010, 03:19 AM   #8
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Quote:
It seems like this was mostly a mutual football decision. Both Josh and Mike seem to like and respect each other but Nolan wanted more autonomy over the D and Josh has a vision and style that works as a total system including the O and D as two sides of the same coin.

After two weeks to review the year, and no doubt with some lucrative back room carrots from Miami and others for Nolan's services .. ones that likely give him a better shot at taking over said team at some point and with perhaps less rebuilding on miami's D required .. they agreed to part ways.

Josh works best when everyone is on the same page. Nolan is a excellent defensive coach but so is Pees. As surprising as this change is, it doesn't at all necessarily mean disaster or a step back on the defense.

And at least now Josh will have all his pegs in a row and has a D coordinator who knows the system inside and out and has bought in 100%.

Josh now either sinks or swims in the next two years, but that was always the case and he know s with Pees he gets a system guy from the same system running the 3-4 as he learned it as well.

Perhaps the defensive failure the last half of the year to adapt and get better after teams started figuring out what Nolan was doing, particularly with the big break downs the last four games, played a big part in this 'mutual' parting?

While the D play significantly better the whole year over all and was the key cog in many of our early wins, its big failures in the Chokeland, Philly and KC games, and even the Indy game at the end where Orton had directed a near comeback, were more responsible for us missing the playoffs than the offense.

I'm not at all saying that is all on Nolan by any means, only that in the coaches year end review, it would have been hard not to notice the big decline in scoring D, going from 11 points allowed in the first six games to 23.5 points allowed in the last six games on D versus the offense which in the first 6 games averaged 22.2 points with a fully intact starting o-line but showed some improvement in the last 6 averaging 26 points a game with a significantly impaired o-line that trashed the run game and thus put a lot more pressure on the passing game as well.

The defense didn't have major injuries, but the weakness of the personnel in the front seven that had been masked a lot by the new schemes early on got more exposed as the season wore on and team figured out how to exploit them. Nolan wasn't able to adjust and compensate again for the talent gap up front. It not all his fault by any means, but his leaving doesn't mean fire and brimstone here either.

Though it does provide significant fodder fro the Nervous Nellies to start up the Fire Josh campaign. Why not wait and see and at least learn to look a little more deeply before assuming the worst.
The Nervous Nellies should wait and see?

Dip sHIAT.
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Old 01-19-2010, 04:02 AM   #9
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Denver Patriots. Yay!
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Old 01-19-2010, 04:04 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Taco John View Post
We simply lost the coach who improved our defense beyond our wildest dreams in one amazing season to unreconcilable "philisophical differences." What's the fuss?
Well, if you put it that way...
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Old 01-19-2010, 04:10 AM   #11
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We still have a great defensive staff IMO and I don't see why Dean Pees can't be just as good as Nolan was for us.
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Old 01-19-2010, 04:45 AM   #12
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Quote:
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We simply lost the coach who improved our defense beyond our wildest dreams in one amazing season to unreconcilable "philisophical differences." What's the fuss?
By coaching completely counter culture to his previous styles, and instead adopting a style much more like what McDaniels was involved with and observed in New England.

Nolan didn't coach an attacking style of defense in Baltimore or San Fran. In both stop he aimed for a read and react defense. Here suddenly we where running an attack heavy scheme with multiple personnel fully committing to the blitz on many plays.

McDaniels obviously was involved in the D. Hell, Dumervil said McDaniels gave him one on one coaching during camp and pre-season.

Seems like an amicable split from both sides to me. Nolan wants a better path to a head coaching job, which he won't get if he's viewed as McDaniels' lieutenant, and McDaniels wants someone who is more intimately familiar with what he looks for in a defense.

When Pees got released I thought there was a good chance we'd find a role for him here.
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Old 01-19-2010, 05:03 AM   #13
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Back at square zero.
I guess we will become the NE Broncos of the AFC West. My how things have changed.
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Old 01-19-2010, 05:18 AM   #14
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I guess we will become the NE Broncos of the AFC West. My how things have changed.
The Chiefs look more like that than us.

Still, this is some stupid ****.

I'm going to miss blitzing.

On the WHOLE this defense had an immense improvement, even with the bad final 10 games.

Now once again, no stability on the D side of the ball and everyone has to learn their **** all over again.
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Old 01-19-2010, 05:18 AM   #15
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We simply lost the coach who improved our defense beyond our wildest dreams in one amazing season to unreconcilable "philisophical differences." What's the fuss?
If the season lasted only 6 games, then I'd agree with this. Sadly, it lasts 16 games and, by the end, it was evident that it was hardly improved very much at all.
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Old 01-19-2010, 05:24 AM   #16
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If the season lasted only 6 games, then I'd agree with this. Sadly, it lasts 16 games and, by the end, it was evident that it was hardly improved very much at all.
Part of the problem could be that Nolan wasn't allowed to adapt is gameplan everyweek to tweek the strategy due to McDouche's hand holding control over everything. Everything that went wrong last year was McD's fault. He's the George Bush (The Decider) & Dick Cheney of the Denver Broncos.
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Old 01-19-2010, 05:42 AM   #17
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Whoops, looks like the Broncos missed out on the Romeo Crennel sweepstakes!


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Old 01-19-2010, 05:47 AM   #18
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Part of the problem could be that Nolan wasn't allowed to adapt is gameplan everyweek to tweek the strategy due to McDouche's hand holding control over everything. Everything that went wrong last year was McD's fault. He's the George Bush (The Decider) & Dick Cheney of the Denver Broncos.
Please don't tell me you actually believe this.
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Old 01-19-2010, 06:05 AM   #19
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Before the split, Miami sent in a request for permission to interview Nolan, sources close to the situation told ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter. The parting was friendly and gave Nolan a chance to move on and talk to the Dolphins, the source told Clayton.
lkjh
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Old 01-19-2010, 06:18 AM   #20
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Old 01-19-2010, 06:52 AM   #21
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This worries me, it took 1 year for Mcdaniels to alienate Nolan, it is not going to be easy to get good coaches like this - we are going to end up with a staff full of cronies.
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Old 01-19-2010, 07:04 AM   #22
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At the end of the season, the lack of talent on defense came up. Sad to see Nolan go, but coaches come and go. Rare for any team to keep all its coaches for a long period of time, especially if seen as doing a great job since other teams want them.

We already had people bad mouthing McDaniels(some do it 24/7 on any issue) for supposedly not letting Turner talk to the Skins, and then turn around and be upset once he does let him. The same would be for Nolan. How dare he let him talk to another team. No, he should let him talk.

It's like they wait to see what McDaniels does first and then b**** no matter what is decided. You can't reason with people who are only wanting to see the bad in somebody. Heck, whenever you see the "kid" remark in reference to him by some around here, who do it all the time, it's not meant as a compliment. Heck, even Shanahan had to go through some of that with the "mastermind" nonsense.
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Old 01-19-2010, 07:04 AM   #23
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This worries me, it took 1 year for Mcdaniels to alienate Nolan, it is not going to be easy to get good coaches like this - we are going to end up with a staff full of cronies.
So is Shanahan. Sad to see Nolan go. Now let's get some more good players in here.
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Old 01-19-2010, 07:09 AM   #24
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We already had people bad mouthing McDaniels(some do it 24/7 on any issue) for supposedly not letting Turner talk to the Skins, and then turn around and be upset once he does let him. The same would be for Nolan. How dare he let him talk to another team. No, he should let him talk.
I don't think many were AS upset about Turner and Dennison leaving because their departures were forgone conclusions. Especially when it was apparent their "style" was no longer wanted and after Shanahan got his new job.
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Old 01-19-2010, 07:11 AM   #25
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We simply lost the coach who improved our defense beyond our wildest dreams in one amazing season to unreconcilable "philisophical differences." What's the fuss?
Well,the beyond our wildest dreams for the first six games, anyway. Also, your statement indicates you give all the credit for the turnaround to Nolan. As the article indicates, one of the issues between the two was that Nolan wanted more autonomy with his defense, while Josh likes to have his hands in everything. Also, Josh brought in the players who were key to the turnaround. So maybe Josh had more to do with the turnaround than many want to give him credit for.

If Pees is the replacement, he'll be a good choice. He was scapegoated this season despite producing the 5th best scoring D in the league after Belichek sent his veteran talent and leadership packing and left him with a young, inexperienced group.
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