Broncos Brainless Coaching is an Issue

Who’s at fault for the Broncos struggle this season: Russell Wilson or Nathaniel Hackett?


Zach Segars

Nathaniel Hackett stands on the sidelines calling plays.

Lane Albrecht, Staff Writer

We are now five weeks into the NFL season and it’s pretty evident that the Broncos are not as strong of a force as many had hoped.

They signed Russell Wilson for a five-year, $242,588,236 contract and are simply not seeing the offensive plays that were expected out on the field.

In the Broncos’ last game against the Colts not only did they not score a single touchdown, but there were quite a few questionable coaching decisions.

In their game against the Colts on Thursday night, the Broncos had the ball with 2 minutes and 19 seconds left to play. They were also up by three and it was 3rd and 4. Instead of going for the first down the ball was thrown to the end zone, getting intercepted by the Colts’ cornerback Stephon Gilmore.

The Broncos’ new coach Nathaniel Hackett said, “We wanted to be sure that we were able to get a first down,” in regards to this play post-game. This season they have also been called out on quite a few pretty weird penalties that wouldn’t occur with better coaching.

The question of whose fault all of this is arises.  The two people that are holding most of the blame right now are coach Nathaniel Hackett and quarterback Russell Wilson.

Nathaniel Hackett stands on the sidelines contemplating what plays will and won’t work for the Broncos’ offense. (Steph Chambers/Getty Images) 

At the end of the day, Wilson isn’t one of the calling plays and making game decisions so it’s looking like it could be the fault of Hackett.

Hackett in an interview when asked about their offense. He said “We need to be way more efficient on first down, getting positive yards. So I think those are the things we are focusing on, trying to narrow down the things that we want to be great at and then continually developing those.” It’s been expressed commonly as ‘growing pains with a new quarterback, owner, and head coach there is going to be some time required to figure everything out. However, most people are wishing they used their preseason as that time to figure out the issues.

It’s now looking like a worse and worse decision to not play Wilson in the preseason and get some of that practice as a team under their belt. Hackett, only five weeks into the game, is struggling to make good decisions in tough situations.

Hopefully, there will be an improvement in the upcoming weeks. It is important to remember that this is Hackett’s first time as a head coach and he’s been paired up with a well-known veteran quarterback in the league.

The spotlight and expectations for his coaching are much higher than if he was paired with a lower-level quarterback. It’s most certainly a tough spot for everybody on the roster at the moment.

Now, is Hackett’s coaching bad enough to get him off of the team? Probably not but only time will tell for certain.

We know Hackett is doing quite terribly at coaching and making effective offensive plays but we can’t just ignore that Wilson is also playing subpar to say the very least.

In the Broncos’ last season with Teddy Bridgewater in their first five games, he completed 69.7% of passes, got 920 yards, and 7 touchdowns. In the same timeframe into this season, Russell Wilson has only completed 59.4% of passes, with 1,254 yards, and only 4 touchdowns.

These stats coming from a quarterback with such high expectations from the Broncos fans is truly unfortunate. The Broncos better hope that everything will lock into place and start working out soon for them or their shot at the playoffs this year is not looking great.
Hackett in an interview said, “Russell’s getting to know the team and they’re getting to know him.” Hackett once again is pushing back against any ideas besides that these key issues the Broncos are facing are simply ‘growing pains.

It will be key for the Broncos to pull it together in the upcoming weeks and figure out what they need to work on.

Russell Wilson did play with an injured shoulder in their game against the Colts which has been another explanation for why they were unable to score a single touchdown throughout the course of the game. Hackett has since confirmed that Wilson will be back and ready to play on the field in their upcoming game against the Chargers.

Seemingly enthusiastic in regards to the team and upcoming games Hackett said, “In the end, it’s about all of us executing together. Whether I need to do a better job explaining the play, or whether Russ needs to hit it. Either way, we just need to work together!” Hackett realizes some issues need to be fixed.

Hopefully, he can identify those issues and take the steps needed to solve them. Hopefully, the Broncos will see a significant boost in performance out on the field.

To say the least, all Broncos fans right now are eager to see if the team can get something going and finish out the season stronger than they started.