For years, the Denver Broncos have been inept offensively, and for years, the fan base has clamored for a smart, exciting, innovative offensive mind. Instead, they’ve been gifted Bill Musgrave, Pat Shurmur, and a gumbo full of malaise and unoriginality.
Now, with another attempt to right the ship offensively, will their prayers be answered by the heavily coveted Kellen Moore, who has one of the fastest rising stocks in the NFL, thanks to his inventive play designs and outstanding success?
It wasn’t long ago that Kellen Moore was floating around the league as a prominent backup quarterback, and it wasn’t long before then that he was starring at Boise State as one of the best field generals in the history of the program.
After a four-year stint as the Cowboys’ backup quarterback behind Dak Prescott and Tony Romo, Moore transitioned into the realm of coaching, and quickly became a superstar in that realm. He only spent one season as the Cowboys’ quarterback coach before he transitioned into the offensive coordinator role under Jason Garrett, the head coach at the time in 2019, though he wasn’t gifted play-calling responsibilities until the 2020 season.
Unfortunately, Moore wasn’t able to fully showcase his play-calling brilliance in his first year with that responsibility as Prescott quickly suffered a season-ending injury, and the offense went down the tubes with Andy Dalton and Ben DiNucci.
In 2021 however, Moore finally had his quarterback, and his offensive brilliance was suddenly on full display. He quickly nabbed early-season headlines with his unique designs that immediately had insane success, and as a result, became one of the hottest prospective head coaches on the market.
What could he potentially bring to the Denver Broncos as their head coach? Let’s look.
The Sean McVay and Kyle Shanahan-types — a young, highly praised, innovative, offensive mind — have become all the rage during the head coach hiring process in recent years, as those types of coaches have found tremendous success all over the league, and are presently the faces of many successful rebuilds.
Kellen Moore is the next iteration of that, but he might be even more ingenuous and inventive than his predecessors in this breed of coaching candidate.
Where McVay, Shanahan and LaFleur were branches off the Mike Shanahan tree and ran his same basic core principles with some creative, modernized concepts and wrinkles mixed in, Moore is drawing stuff that is truly unique, and unlike anything we’ve really seen before at the NFL level.
Take this fake pitch, that is ultimately tossed to the running back for an easy, walk-in touchdown. It’s a twist on a fake on a well-designed running concept.
Kellen Moore with a fantastic wrinkle to the quick dive pitch play. Never seen this before and I love it pic.twitter.com/acnrYqFBka
— Geoff Schwartz (@geoffschwartz) October 10, 2021
Moore doesn’t hit you with the counter punch. He crushes your soul into a pulp with the counter to his counter punch, and he does it the moment you’ve finished gasping your breath after his opening strike.
Kellen Moore is just messing with defenses at this point.
They use a man zone indicator pre-snap motion with a traditional TE HB two-man concept formation to then get to essentially a quads concept.
Easy money for Dak!#DallasCowboys
Quick Breakdown! pic.twitter.com/oVDrvCkbRh
— Tim Jenkins (@TJenkinsElite) December 30, 2021
The Broncos offense hasn’t featured anything other than milk toast for half a decade, and Moore has the most exotic pallate in football to spruce things up considerably.
The big negative with Moore is going to be his overall lack of experience. With just four years of coaching experience, period, only Jerod Mayo has less coaching experience. What he lacks in the length of his tenure, he makes up for with the responsibilities that have been placed on his shoulders and his immediate success in those areas.
With three years spent as a coordinator, and two seasons as the team’s play-caller, only three of the 10 candidates (Eric Bieniemy, Nathaniel Hackett, Dan Quinn) have more coordinating or play-calling experience.
That said, going from ‘never coached before’ to head coach of the Denver Broncos in a mere four seasons is almost too fast a climb, and it’s safe to wonder if Moore is ready for such a heaping of responsibility.
Plus, at age 33, Moore will be having to coach players that are older than him, and it won’t be too infrequent. Is he ready for the complications that could arise from that, and would he be respected as the figurehead and leader of an NFL locker room at his startling young age?
The hiring of Moore would be a massive get for the Denver Broncos. He is one of the most coveted candidates on the market right now, and it presently feels like celebrity owner Jerry Jones will move heaven and earth to ensure that Moore doesn’t leave Dallas.
It would be a massive swing for the fences, and one that could go horribly wrong if it misses, but it also has the potential to be a rousing grand slam on par with the hires of LaFleur and McVay.