Broncos Interviewed Unexpected Candidate For Defensive Coordinator Role

David Kaestle
Matt Patricia was being considered for the Broncos' DC role.
Matt Patricia was being considered for the Broncos' DC role. / Associated Press

The Denver Broncos brought Sean Payton out of retirement to be their next head coach earlier this offseason and he is still trying to build out his staff. While he's still searching for an offensive coordinator, Payton found a defensive coordinator on Thursday by hiring former Denver head coach Vance Joseph.

Prior to hiring Joseph, however, a surprising name popped up in Payton's DC search -- former Detroit Lions head coach and New England Patriots defensive coordinator Matt Patricia.

Denver Broncos News

Patricia's reputation has taken a huge hit in the last few years. After landing the Lions' head coaching gig because of his work as the Patriots' DC, his time in Detroit went just about as poorly as it could have. From a losing product on the field to reports of disagreements and dysfunctionality behind the scenes, it was a mess for Patricia from top to bottom with Detroit, and he was fired in the middle of his third season.

Bill Belichick brought Patricia back last season to help run the offense, even though Patricia had no offensive coaching experience. That led to predictable struggles and dysfunction within New England's ranks as the team sputtered on offense and missed the playoffs.

Despite those recent woes, Patricia's track record of defensive success speaks for itself. The Patriots' defense was ranked in the top 10 for all six of his seasons as DC from 2012 to 2017. While some may credit Belichick and the roster for some of that success, Patricia also has to be given a good portion of that credit as well.

While Denver didn't pan out for Patricia, the fact that Payton was even considering him for a role proves he still has a potential future in the NFL as a defensive coach.

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David Kaestle is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, David also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username davekaestle. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.