Forget Jim Harbaugh. The Denver Broncos don't need him.
That's because Jim Harbaugh is really only an exciting candidate because it could mean he was bringing along Andrew Luck. Some fans in the Mile High City would like to see them in town to join John Elway and complete the Stanford trio.
I'm ready to call that a pipe dream.
Based on the position the Carolina Panthers are taking, Andrew Luck is going to be out of reach for the Denver Broncos. The Panthers have already said if he comes out, they're taking him and they aren't interested in trading.
That would mean acquiring Luck as a franchise QB would require far more than a talentless Broncos squad can afford to give up. John Elway is smart enough to see that.
Further, I'm prepared to back pedal on my endorsement of Luck. The kid is very good, but on a yearly basis there is some new quarterback who as praised as the NFL draft's "once-in-a-generation" player. I'm not buying into it anymore.
Luck is very good right now, but there are too many factors that play into a quarterback's development within the professional game to accurately predict how the player will pan out for the team that drafts them. So as far as I'm concerned, the Panthers can have him.
I have to admit, I think he has a very good chance of being a hell of a player.
Without Luck, Harbaugh isn't as interesting. Though he still would be a thrilling choice at coach, I think the Broncos could do far better with Mike Mularkey.
Bringing in the Atlanta Falcons' offensive coordinator (and Florida product) would provide the Broncos with a very interesting Gator tandem.
Mularkey is known for very creative offenses that utilize non-traditional players in exciting ways. He has also done an excellent job developing Matt Ryan from the time he was a rookie. So who on the Broncos' roster might his skill set compliment very well?
None other than Tim Tebow, who has Denver fans swooning.
I've never made it a secret that I dislike Tim Tebow. I won't back off of that view now. I don't think that, as a quarterback, he can pass impressively.
For every pass he throws that is beautiful, there are two more that are cringe-worthy. But the guy is a better rusher than Knowshon Moreno and he certainly has a non-traditional skill set.
In the right offensive scheme, with the type of creative physicality that Mike Mularkey would bring, Tebow could find a lot of success. But he will never, ever be John Elway or Peyton Manning, and that is the type of quarterback Broncos' fans are still longing for.
However, with the situation the franchise finds itself in now, the team is going to have to do a heck of a lot with only a few draft choices and a lot of undesirable players on the roster. The team is going to have to squeeze Josh McDaniels' lemons to make lemonade.
Trading Kyle Orton for a second round pick would probably be a great start to help bring in a young defensive player during the draft. And further, trading any other old players on the roster for picks would probably be good as well (though the team ought to keep Champ Bailey, if at all possible).
But past that, the front office is going to have to find a coach willing to take minimal personnel control who can maximize a rather untalented roster led by a controversial young quarterback with better legs for running than an arm for passing.
They need a non-traditional, physically focused coach.
That makes the Mike Mularkey-Tim Tebow tandem very intriguing. But the Broncos still might be missing the boat by ignoring the need for a defensive minded architect.
Lets see if Pat Bowlen, or rather John Elway, gets it right this time.
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