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Vance Joseph makes his final case to return as head coach of the Broncos

Zac Stevens Avatar
December 31, 2018

DENVER — On Sunday night, the Denver Broncos officially closed the books on a forgettable two seasons.

Denver followed up an incredibly disappointing 5-11 season in 2017 with a nearly-as-disappointing season in 2018.

Not only did Denver finish 2018 with a 6-10 record, they ended on a four-game losing streak.

As the offseason quickly begins, John Elway will need to decide whether or not to bring back the man who has been at the helm for these two seasons as head coach.

While Elway mulls the decision, Vance Joseph stated his case one final time for all of the world, including his boss, to hear.

“We’ve put a lot of work in. It’s a foundation that’s been laid here that should pay off in the future, and I think we have to honestly just look at where we are and find a way to improve,” Joseph stated following his team’s 23 to 9 loss on Sunday night.

“I think how we work and how this team has played all year and where we are has to be considered.”

Joseph, while hired for his “leader of men” abilities, works significantly closer with the defense than the offense.

During his defense of his standing with the organization on Sunday, Joseph pointed to his top-10 scoring defense, but called Denver’s disappointing season a “team deal” and wouldn’t pin the blame on one specific area.

Joseph didn’t turn to the book of excuses — i.e. injuries, bad bounces or a tough schedule — to get him off the hook, even though there could be a strong case for all three.

The first-time head coach understood that his 11-21 career record in Denver isn’t up to the Broncos’ standard of excellence set by Pat Bowlen.

“The first year winning five and winning six this year, by the Broncos’ standard, is not good enough. I totally get that,” an even-keeled Joseph said, while taking questions about his job status.

While he didn’t shy away from making a case for himself, he knows at this point there’s only so much he can do.

“It’s not my decision. I want to be here, obviously,” he said, leaving no doubt about his intentions. “The players, they’ve played hard all year, we have a great staff, a locker room that cares and really good coaches. We have a bunch of good young players. We’ll see. Again, it’s not my decision, but I do want to be here.”

As of Sunday evening, Joseph had not been informed of Elway’s decision on whether or not Joseph will be back for a third season.

“John has been fair with me. We talk everyday about where we are,” Joseph said about his relationship with Elway. “Again, six wins is not good enough. We had a chance to really finish this thing strong with four opponents that we thought we had a chance to beat and we didn’t do that. We had a nice run in the middle of the season, we won three straight, and that felt good, but it wasn’t enough.”

Joseph wasn’t sure when he would be informed of his boss’ decision, but the two are expected to meet Monday morning.

“The easy part would be to walk away and say, ‘Hey, good. I’ve coached a long time in this league. I work.’ But the hard part would be to come back and try to finish this thing. I want the hard part,” the 46-year old stated. “I want to come back and make this thing right.”

John Elway will get to decide which road Joseph takes in a matter of hours.


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