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#pounditTuesday, January 31, 2023

Broncos down to 2 finalists for head coach job?

Rob Walton smiling

Oct 30, 2022; London, United Kingdom; Denver Broncos owner Rob Walton reacts during an NFL International Series game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at Wembley Stadium. The Broncos defeated the Jaguars 21-17. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

There are five NFL teams looking to fill head coach vacancies, and nobody has made a hire yet. But one NFL reporter believes the Denver Broncos could be close to making a decision.

Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio said late Tuesday night that the Broncos could make a decision on their head coach as early as Wednesday. He mentioned San Francisco 49ers defensive coordinator DeMeco Ryans and former Stanford head coach David Shaw as “perceived finalists.”

Ryans, 38, is a former Pro Bowl linebacker who has been a coach on the 49ers’ staff since 2017. He has served as their defensive coordinator the last two seasons. If the Broncos wanted to hire him, they couldn’t officially do so until the 49ers’ season ends.

Shaw, 50, was the head coach at Stanford from 2011-2022. Several members of the new Broncos’ owners/leadership have ties to Stanford, including Condoleezza Rice. Shaw was recently reported to be a “sleeper” candidate.

Sean Payton could also be in the mix, as he interviewed for the job and there reportedly is mutual interest between the sides.

After one team hires a head coach, the others typically follow pretty quickly to avoid missing out.

Denver is coming off its third 5-win season since 2017.

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