ENGLEWOOD (CBSMiami/AP) — The NFL season may still be over a month away from ending but teams with head coaching vacancies are already hard at work to fill their void.
Denver GM John Elway has been granted permission to interview three assistants currently in the playoffs for his head coaching position, according to a person with knowledge of the Broncos’ plans.
The person, speaking on condition of anonymity because the team isn’t revealing its interview schedule, told The Associated Press that the Broncos will interview Kyle Shanahan, Vance Joseph and Dave Toub in the next week.
The Broncos are seeking a successor to Gary Kubiak, 55, who stepped down Monday for health reasons with two years remaining on his contract.
The Broncos’ vacancy is the most attractive of the half-dozen head coach openings in the NFL because of their dazzling championship-level defense and ownership’s willingness to spend money in free agency along with two young quarterbacks Elway is very high on.
The team will interview Shanahan, the Falcons offensive coordinator and son of former long-time Broncos coach Mike Shanahan, this weekend because Atlanta has a first-round bye in the NFC playoffs.
The Chiefs have a bye in the AFC playoffs, so Toub can interview this week.
Joseph will have to wait until next week because the Dolphins play at Pittsburgh in the AFC wild-card round Sunday.
Elway said Monday one of his top job qualifications that he’s looking for is the ability to develop his young quarterbacks Trevor Siemian and Paxton Lynch . He also said the ability to relate to today’s player was paramount and twice Elway mentioned he was intrigued by some of the new names out there this time around.
“Obviously there are a lot of young guys out there that have a lot of potential and very bright young guys,” Elway said, “so hopefully we can get one of those.”
This is Elway’s third coaching search in six seasons as Broncos GM. His first two hires had previous experience, John Fox in Carolina and Kubiak in Houston.
Shanahan is 37 and Joseph 44.
Joseph interviewed for the Broncos’ job two years ago when Kubiak was hired and has ties to the Denver area, having played quarterback and running back at the University of Colorado from 1990-95.
Toub is 54, a year younger than Kubiak, who retired after going 24-11 in two seasons in Denver.
Kubiak led the Broncos to a 24-10 win over Carolina in Super Bowl 50, but the Broncos slipped to 9-7 in 2016 and missed the playoffs for the first time since 2010.
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