No team has underperformed this season the way the Denver Broncos have. First-year head coach Nathaniel Hackett appears to be sitting on a boiling-hot seat. 

The 3-9 Denver Broncos last won a game in October. They currently rank last in the NFL in scoring (13.8 PPG) and 27th in yards (315.2 YPG). And the Broncos have only scored 17 or more points in two games. 

While nothing is set in stone, according to Jason La Canfora of The Washington Post, “There is a mounting consensus that [head coach Nathaniel Hackett] will not be back—’ They can’t sell that to their fans in 2023,’ one GM said—and three executives I spoke to all believe that front office changes are more likely than not in Denver.”

If Hackett is fired, here are some candidates who could replace him. 

Dan Quinn, Dallas Cowboys defensive coordinator

Quinn was the frontrunner choice for many fans last season. George Paton’s decision came down to Quinn and Hackett. 

Some may argue that the Broncos should be focused on an offensive-minded coach to solve their scoring problems. However, Quinn is a veteran coach who’s loved his players in the locker room and has proven he knows how to hire the right coordinators. He also has the experience of helping a veteran quarterback in Matt Ryan perform the best stint of his career during their Super Bowl 51 run. Quinn should and will be at the top of general managers’ ideal candidate lists.

Ben Johnson, Detroit Lions offensive coordinator

The Detroit Lions have become the anti-Broncos this season. They currently rank sixth in scoring (26.3 PPG) but last in defensive points (27 PPG). 

Johnson has managed to make Jared Goff look like a top-tier quarterback again after many years of struggling. Goff is currently in the top 10 among quarterbacks for passing yards, touchdowns, and yards per attempt. Despite trading away one of their top offensive weapons in tight end TJ Hockenson, they’ve won four out of their last five games and have a legitimate chance to make the playoffs. 

Ken Dorsey, Buffalo Bills offensive coordinator

Dorsey replaced Brian Daboll as the Bills’ offensive coordinator when he became the New York Giants’ head coach. 

Dorsey was promoted after three years as the team’s quarterbacks coach. Before the Bills, Dorsey was the quarterbacks coach for the Carolina Panthers, where he helped develop Cam Newton during his MVP run. In order to find success, the Broncos will need a head coach who can work with Russell Wilson to help him re-find his winning ways.

Kellen Moore, Dallas Cowboys offensive coordinator

When quarterback Dak Prescott went down in Week 1, many thought the Dallas Cowboys’ chances of making the playoffs were doomed. 

On the contrary, Moore’s play-calling made Cooper Rush look like an adequate starting quarterback. In Rush’s seven starts, the Cowboys managed to go 4-1 and scored at least 20 points in each of those wins. Since Prescott has returned, the Cowboys have yet to score less than 24 points and have scored at least 40 three times. With a defense in Denver averaging only 17 PPG allowed, Moore could be the perfect ingredient to help the team find success.

DeMeco Ryans, San Francisco 49ers defensive coordinator

The only team with a defense allowing fewer points than the Broncos is the San Francisco 49ers (15.8 PPG). 

Ryans’ creative play style made him a hot-name last coaching cycle. The Minnesota Vikings were reportedly very impressed and invited him for a second interview. He declined the offer, stating he needed more time to develop as a coach conveying his mentality and maturity. The Broncos have struggled to remain disciplined, and Ryans’ coaching style might be exactly what they need.