Prior to joining the Miami Dolphins as defensive coordinator last season, Vance Joseph was a defensive backs coach. Now the head coach of the Denver Broncos, he elevated Joe Woods from defensive backs coach to replace Wade Phillips as defensive coordinator.

Obviously, Joseph knows the importance of the secondary.

“It’s a passing league and having a coordinator with a secondary mindset , to me, is the way to go moving forward in this league,” Joseph said on Tuesday.

A secondary mindset is exactly what Woods has. From the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, to the Minnesota Vikings, to the Oakland Raiders, to the Broncos, he has coached the position in the NFL every year since 2004. Now, after directing the “No Fly Zone” and the league’s best passing defense in each of the last two years, he will be taking over the whole defense.

“Keeping Joe Woods as a coordinator was vital,” Joseph said. “Joe’s been a secondary coach here for two years. They’ve been first in pass defense for the last two years. All four guys made [at least] one Pro Bowl under Joe. Keeping Joe, keeping that system intact, was very, very important.”

Taking Woods’ place as defensive backs coach for the Broncos will be former All-Pro safety Marcus Robertson. Coincidentally, after serving as his assistant for one season, Robertson also replaced Woods in the same position for the Oakland Raiders when he left to join Wade Phillips’ staff.

Interestingly, with over two decades of experience coaching secondaries or as a defensive coordinator (not to mention seven seasons as a player) assistant defensive backs coach Johnnie Lynn has more NFL experience than Joseph, Woods or Robertson.

“Johnnie was my mentor in San Fran., he was Joe’s mentor his entire career and also Marcus Robertson’s mentor,” Joseph said. “He’s a guy that’s forgotten more football than we all know [put] together.”

Needless to say, if you think the “No Fly Zone” is going to take a step back next season, you should probably think again.