ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — The Denver Broncos on Thursday announced that John Fox has agreed to terms to be the 14th head coach in the club’s history.
“Coach Fox is a great fit for us not only with his coaching ability but also with his personality. He’s a dynamic and proven leader,” Broncos Executive Vice President of Football Operations John Elway said. “He’s coached great defenses, turned teams around and been to Super Bowls. We couldn’t be more excited to have him lead our football team.”
Fox spent the last nine seasons as head coach of the Carolina Panthers (2002-10) and has 22 years of NFL experience to his credit.
“I am very thankful to Pat Bowlen and John Elway for giving me the opportunity to coach a football team with such a proud tradition, Fox said. “The Broncos have a culture of winning, and I am excited to continue that legacy.
“I can’t wait to get to work, pushing our players to be the best they can be and representing this community as head coach of the Denver Broncos.”
Fox compiled a 73-71 (.507) regular-season record with the Panthers that included three 11-win campaigns, two NFC South Division titles and three playoff appearances. Carolina went 5-3 in the postseason under Fox, appearing in two NFC Championship Games and one Super Bowl (2003).
He took over a Panthers team in 2002 that had gone 1-15 the previous season and led the club to a 7-9 record in his first year to record the third-best turnaround by a first-year coach in NFL history. He also was instrumental in improving Carolina’s defense from a last-place ranking in 2001 to the NFL’s No. 2 unit in his initial campaign—the only defense since the 1970 merger to accomplish that feat.
His 2003 squad finished 11-5 and captured the NFC South crown en route to Super Bowl XXXVIII, where Carolina lost to New England. In doing so, he joined Vince Lombardi and Bill Parcells as the only coaches in NFL history to inherit a one-win team and lead it to the postseason two years later.
Prior to his head coaching tenure with Carolina, he spent five seasons as the defensive coordinator for the New York Giants (1997-2001). New York allowed the seventh-fewest points per game (18.7) in the NFL during that span, while also finishing fourth in the league with a plus-25 turnover differential. The Giants totaled 230 sacks in five seasons under Fox, including Michael Strahan’s NFL-record 22.5 sacks in 2001.
The pinnacle of Fox’s stretch with the Giants came during the 2000 season in which the Giants advanced to Super Bowl XXXV by shutting out the high-scoring Minnesota Vikings in the NFC Championship Game.
Before serving as a consultant for the Rams in 1996, he was the defensive coordinator for the Oakland Raiders for two seasons (1994-95).
He got his start in the NFL as the secondary coach for Pittsburgh, where he spent three seasons (1989-91) and helped lead the Steelers’ top-ranked pass defense during the 1990 season. He also spent two years as the secondary coach for the San Diego Chargers under Bobby Ross (1992-93).
Prior to his three-year stint as defensive coordinator and secondary coach at the University of Pittsburgh from 1986-88, he spent seven seasons as an assistant coach at various stops at the collegiate and USFL levels.
Fox started his coaching career as a graduate assistant at San Diego State University in 1978, after playing two seasons as a defensive back for the Aztecs and graduating from the school with a bachelor’s degree in physical education and a secondary education teaching credential.
Born on Feb. 8, 1955, in Virginia Beach, Va., Fox and his wife, Robin, have three sons: Matthew, Mark and Cody, and a daughter, Halle.
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