Broncos hire Bears defensive coordinator Vic Fangio as new head coach


Published 12:39 p.m. ET Jan. 9, 2019 | Updated 1:09 p.m. ET Jan. 9, 2019


With Arizona, Tampa Bay and reportedly Green Bay finding head coaches, there’s one commonality: NFL teams are looking for someone to help their QBs.

It took him 32 years of toiling as an assistant in the NFL, but long-time defensive coordinator Vic Fangio finally landed a head coaching job.

The Denver Broncos have hired Fangio as their next head coach, a person familiar with the situation confirmed to USA TODAY Sports. The person requested anonymity because the Broncos had not made an official announcement.

He replaces Vance Joseph, who had been fired at the end of the season.

Fangio had been the defensive coordinator for the Chicago Bears for the past four seasons, and oversaw a unit that drastically improved in 2018 with the additions of linebacker Khalil Mack and rookie linebacker Roquan Smith.

The Bears ranked third in total defense (299.7 yards a game allowed) and first in scoring defense (17.7 points a game allowed) this season and Fangio had three first-team AP all-pro players selected from his defense — Mack, safety Eddie Jackson, and cornerback Kyle Fuller.

More: Cleveland Browns to name Freddie Kitchens as next head coach

Before joining the Bears staff, Fangio, 60, was the defensive coordinator of the 49ers from 2011-14, and also had experience coordinating the defenses of the Texans (2002-05), Colts (1999-2001), and Panthers (1995-98).

The Broncos underwhelmed in Joseph’s two seasons in Denver, compiling a record of 11-21 with third- and fourth-place finishes in the AFC West. One of Denver’s primary deficiencies was quarterback play, with instability and constant rotation coming at the position before general manager John Elway opted to sign Case Keenum last offseason as a free agent.

Fangio’s contract is good for four seasons, with a fifth-year option, according to NFL Network.


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