It’s hard for a coordinator to be thrown into the fire when a head coach has to miss work or loses his job. However, Jack Del Rio had no trouble adjusting.
The defensive coordinator for the Denver Broncos stepped up into the role when John Fox had to have heart surgery. The difficult part for Del Rio was that he had to coach during the team’s toughest part of the schedule, going up against powerhouse teams like the Kansas City Chiefs and the New England Patriots and adding on a surprise team in the San Diego Chargers.
The fact that he went 3-1 in Fox’s absence is simply remarkable. I know he had a lot of weapons in Peyton Manning and the receiving corps behind him and he has head coaching experience, but you have to give credit where credit is due. He was literally a play or two away from being 4-0, but the fact that the Broncos showed no sign of slowing down under a new coach shows that this team is a force no matter who is at the helm.
It would not surprise me if Del Rio is offered a job coaching somewhere in the NFL or if the USC Trojans decide to offer him the job that he interviewed for during the Broncos’ bye week. He deserves every right to be a head coach and proved that in this month alone.
Another thing you have to put into perspective is that despite all the injuries on defense, Del Rio has still given this group a chance to go out there and compete at a high level. Basically, the scheme has not changed despite the injuries to the Broncos’ defense.
Del Rio has passed his test as the interim coach with flying colors. It’ll be interesting to see how this stretch of games determines Del Rio’s future, but one thing is certain — he still has the coaching genius in him.