New Defensive Line Coach Jay Rodgers talks with DenverBroncos.com about his new position in the coaching staff, his thoughts on the club’s defensive tackles and what to expect from Defensive Coordinator Jack Del Rio’s defense.
ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — On May 14, the Broncos’ coaching staff was suddenly in flux.
Defensive Line Coach Wayne Nunnely retired, leaving an open spot at the position. But Head Coach John Fox wasted little time in promoting former defensive assistant Jay Rodgers to that position.
“He’s a young, bright coach,” Elvis Dumervil said of Rodgers at the time. “He knows a lot — he’s been around. I think he’s extremely smart. He’s learned a lot from Coach Nunnely as well and I think his future is bright. It was very fortunate to be able to have Coach Rodgers on staff and get him in.”
Rodgers worked closely with Nunnely and the defensive line during the 2011 season, which Rodgers said helped the transition. With OTAs and minicamp in the rearview mirror, Rodgers — a former college quarterback — sat down with DenverBroncos.com to discuss his new role, his coaching philosophy and what he expects from the defensive line in 2012.
How exciting is this new opportunity for you?
“Very. The reason why you get into this business is to coach football. Obviously this opportunity presented itself to me. (Head) Coach (John) Fox felt like I was a good fit for what (Defensive Coordinator Jack) Del Rio wanted to do with the defense. I accepted that and accepted the challenge to coach these guys up to another level of football, improve these guys to get us to the level we want to get to, which is obviously to compete for a world championship.”
How helpful was former Defensive Line Coach Wayne Nunnely in helping you step into your new role?
“It was huge. Obviously, Coach Nunnely is arguably one of the best D-line coaches in the National Football League and has been for a long time. Having him as a mentor over the past couple years has been tremendous for me in my learning process. I look to grow beyond these years and hopefully for a lot of years to come.”