The San Diego Chargers hired Denver Broncos offensive coordinator Mike McCoy as coach to try to turn around a team coming off its first losing season since 2003.
McCoy, 40, succeeds Norv Turner, who was fired on Dec. 31 after the Chargers went 7-9 and missed the National Football League playoffs for the third straight year. The Chargers had a 56-40 record during Turner’s six-year tenure, including 24-24 the last three seasons.
The Broncos’ offense ranked second in the NFL in scoring this season with quarterback Peyton Manning. McCoy had interviewed for the Miami Dolphins’ coaching vacancy a year ago after helping Denver reach the playoffs with a read-option offense led by quarterback Tim Tebow.
“Mike has shown he has one of the most innovative minds in football,” Chargers President Dean Spanos said in a statement. “He has a track record of building offenses and maximizing the abilities of his players.”
Before joining the Broncos staff in 2009, McCoy was an assistant with the Carolina Panthers from 2000 to 2008.
It’s the second straight year the Broncos have had a coordinator become coach of one of their rivals in the American Football Conference’s Western Division. The Oakland Raiders hired former Broncos defensive coordinator Dennis Allen as coach last offseason.
“He’s going to make an excellent head coach and is certainly qualified for the position,” Broncos coach John Fox said. “Mike understands offenses in this league. Beyond that, he’s got a great football mind. His preparation and detail -- his level of organization -- is very strong. As a play caller, I had a lot of confidence in him and watched him have great success.”
The Chargers dismissed General Manager A.J. Smith following the season and hired former Indianapolis Colts Vice President of Football Operations Tom Telesco last week to replace him. Telesco interviewed McCoy over the past few days, along with former Arizona Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt, Cincinnati Bengals offensive coordinator Jay Gruden and former Chicago Bears coach Lovie Smith.