ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) — The Denver Broncos completed their U-turn on offense Tuesday by hiring veteran NFL assistant Mike Shula as their quarterbacks coach.
Shula and new offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur bring more than four decades of combined NFL coaching experience to Denver, where they’ll shepherd QB Drew Lock into his second season in 2020.
Shula and Shurmur, who are both 54 years old, replaced T.C. McCartney, 29, and Rich Scangarello, 47, respectively.
Scangarello and McCartney both brought zero experience into their roles a year ago as the Broncos tried to modernize their long-languishing offense. The Broncos (7-9) averaged 17.6 points and didn’t display the innovation that was expected but they did finish on a high note with Lock starting the final five weeks and going 4-1 in those starts.
Head coach Vic Fangio fired Scangarello a couple of weeks ago after initially saying he planned no staff shakeups. That thinking changed after Shurmur became available following his ouster as head coach of the New York Giants.
Shula has been a QB coach or offensive coordinator in the NFL for the past 20 years, including the past two seasons in New York where he served as Shurmur’s offensive coordinator.
“Mike is a well-respected coach around the league, especially when it comes to developing quarterbacks. The familiarity he has with Pat is an added bonus, but what’s most impressive is Mike’s proven track record coaching quarterbacks at many different stages of their careers,” Fangio said in a statement. “We’re fortunate to add someone with his depth of experience, coaching ability and unique perspective to our staff.”
Under Shula’s tutelage last season, Daniel Jones became the second rookie in league history to throw for two dozen touchdowns with 12 or fewer interceptions.
A year earlier, Eli Manning, who retired last week, completed a career-high 66 percent of his passes and registered the lowest interception percentage (1.9) of his career.
Before joining the Giants, Shula worked with Cam Newton for seven season as Carolina’s QBs coach (2011-12) and offensive coordinator (2013-17).