On Tuesday, Denver Broncos GM George Paton flew to North Texas to interview Dallas Cowboys offensive coordinator Kellen Moore. Paton, along with the Broncos' hiring committee, reportedly took to a local restaurant where a private dining room was used to conduct the interview with Moore.
All this according to CowboysSI.com's Mike Fisher, who also reported that the Broncos will interview Dallas defensive coordinator Dan Quinn later in the afternoon. The most curious thing Fisher reported, however, has to do with Quinn's candidacy and perhaps the true purpose of Paton casting this 'wide net' in search of the Broncos' 18th coach all-time.
We've long heard the buzz that Quinn is the apple of Paton's eye and the odds-on favorite to land the job. But what if I told you the nine other interviews, though not exactly window dressing, were more about finding the right coordinators to work under the already-decided hire, Quinn?
That's what Fisher is reporting this week.
Additionally, we are told, the Broncos — who we reported a week ago are zeroing in on Quinn, to the point where we believe Paton has been interviewing "head coach candidates'' who are actually candidates to become Quinn's coordinators — will turn their attention to the Quinn interview with a "late-afternoon'' meeting, also to be conducted in North Texas.
It's good to get somewhat of confirmation on a subject I have long suspected since all the Quinn-to-Denver rumors began. Paton and Quinn have been pining to work together since their Miami days and the Cowboys' defensive coordinator appears to be this NFL coaching cycle's most coveted name.
On the Huddle Up Podcast, I shared my hunch that all these interviews for Denver's head-coaching vacancy could be more about searching for coordinators to hire under Quinn, or Green Bay offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett. If true, it would be wildly disappointing, however.
If Paton has been single-minded about landing Quinn from the outset, it would mean that the GM's professed objective of conducting a comprehensive search for a head coach was malarkey. And not necessarily in the best interest of the Broncos.
Frankly, such a covert goal smacks of vintage John Elway — not necessarily the Paton Broncos fans have started to get to know over the past year. Elway wanted Gary Kubiak in 2015 and by golly, he got him.
Elway wanted Vance Joseph two years later. While he interviewed Kyle Shanahan and Dave Toub, the job was always going to go to Joseph. That didn't pan out too well, though the Broncos did win a Super Bowl with Kubiak.
What Fisher is being told could simply be the opinion of his source close to the Cowboys and not necessarily the unvarnished truth. In all honesty, Quinn probably has been Paton's favorite but I'd bet that he has approached each interview with the posture of openness to being blown away by that coach's presentation.
If not, and it was always about Quinn from the drop, it doesn't bode well for the Broncos. There's a reason Quinn is so coveted right now but Denver's last two head-coach hires were defensive-minded and neither could get climb above .500 over five years combined.
Follow Chad on Twitter @ChadNJensen.
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