Vic Fangio
refer to caption
Fangio with the Denver Broncos in 2021
Personal information
Born: (1958-08-22) August 22, 1958 (age 63)
Dunmore, Pennsylvania
Career information
High school:Dunmore (PA)
College:East Stroudsburg
Career history
As a coach:
Career highlights and awards
Head coaching record
Regular season:19–30 (.388)
Coaching stats at PFR

Victor Mick Fangio (born August 22, 1958) is an American football coach. Fangio most recently served as the head coach of the Denver Broncos of the National Football League (NFL). A 41-year coaching veteran with 33 seasons of NFL experience, Fangio was a defensive coordinator for 20 of the last 24 seasons at the NFL or college level before becoming the Broncos’ head coach. He served as the Chicago Bears' defensive coordinator after leading the defenses for the San Francisco 49ers, Stanford University, Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts and Carolina Panthers.

Fangio’s defenses have consistently been among the most productive in the NFL in a number of categories, including scoring defense, total yards allowed and fewest penalties. His defenses have ranked in the league’s top-five in yards allowed in eight of the last 13 years while placing in the NFL’s top-5 in fewest points allowed seven times over that span.[1]

Coaching career

Early career

In 1975, Fangio played the defensive position of safety at Dunmore High School in northeast Pennsylvania.[2] From 1979 to 1981, he returned to his high school as the linebackers coach and defensive coordinator. In 1982, he was the defensive coordinator at Milford Academy, and in 1984 he became a defensive assistant coach for the Philadelphia/Baltimore Stars of the United States Football League (USFL).

New Orleans Saints

Fangio began his NFL career with New Orleans as the team’s linebackers coach from 1986-1994 during which time he coached the famed “Dome Patrol”, one of the greatest defensive groups of all-time. During Fangio’s nine seasons in New Orleans, the Saints ranked among the NFL’s Top 5 in total defense (300.0 ypg – 5th), scoring defense (18.1 ppg – 4th), sacks (408 – 3rd) and takeaways (336 – T-3rd).

Carolina Panthers

Fangio joined the Carolina Panthers in 1995, the inaugural season for the Panthers. He was the defensive coordinator from 1995-98 under head coach Dom Capers and helped the franchise advance to the NFC Championship Game in just its second season.[3]

Indianapolis Colts

Fangio coached the defense for the Colts from 1999-2001 under head coach Jim Mora Sr.

Houston Texans

Fangio joined another first-year team in the Houston Texans in 2002. He was Dom Capers' defensive coordinator in Houston from 2002-05.[4][5]

Baltimore Ravens

Fangio with Baltimore Ravens in 2009
Fangio with Baltimore Ravens in 2009

Fangio joined the Baltimore Ravens in 2006 and worked as a special assistant to the head coach/defensive assistant for his first three years with the Ravens and later coached a linebackers group in 2009 that featured All-Pro Ray Lewis.[6]

Stanford and San Francisco 49ers

In 2010, he was the defensive coordinator for the Stanford Cardinal under head coach Jim Harbaugh, and in 2011 he followed Harbaugh to the San Francisco 49ers when Harbaugh was hired as the 49ers' head coach.[7] Along with Harbaugh, he was credited with turning around the 49ers defense, producing a league-high 35 turnovers in 2011. Fangio was released from his contract by the 49ers on January 15, 2015 after Harbaugh was let go.[8]

Chicago Bears

On January 19, 2015, Fangio agreed in principle to become the defensive coordinator for the Chicago Bears.[9] After the departure of outside linebackers coach Clint Hurtt in 2017, Fangio assumed that position in addition to his role as defensive coordinator.[10] During Fangio's first three seasons in Chicago, the Bears defense improved from a 30th-ranked unit in 2014 to being 14th, 15th, and 10th in total defense.[11]

Fangio's contract expired following the 2017 season and he interviewed for the Bears' head coaching position on January 3, 2018.[12] The head coaching position ultimately went to Matt Nagy. Nine days later, Fangio signed a three-year extension with the Bears to continue as their defensive coordinator,[13] making him the first Bears defensive coordinator to stay under a new head coach since Buddy Ryan with newly-arriving head Mike Ditka in 1982.[14] Fangio was also granted complete control of the defense.[15] Under Fangio, the 2018 Bears defense excelled as it led the NFL in turnovers forced (36) and interceptions (27). Chicago was also ranked third in total defense, second in yards per play allowed, and first in scoring defense.[16] On January 17, 2019, Fangio was named Assistant Coach of the Year by the Pro Football Writers Association.[17] A month later, he received the same honor from the Associated Press at the 8th Annual NFL Honors.[18]

Denver Broncos

On January 10, 2019, Fangio was hired to become the 17th head coach of the Denver Broncos.[19]

2019 season

See also: 2019 Denver Broncos season

As Fangio assembled his staff, defensive backs coach Ed Donatell followed him from Chicago to serve as his defensive coordinator,[20] as did outside linebackers coach Brandon Staley for the same position.[21] On September 9, 2019, Fangio lost his regular season head coaching debut against the Oakland Raiders by a score of 16–24. On October 6, 2019, Fangio recorded his first career win as head coach in a 20–13 win against the Los Angeles Chargers. In Fangio's first season as head coach, he led the Broncos to a 7–9 record, finishing 2nd in the AFC West.[22]

2020 season

See also: 2020 Denver Broncos season

In Fangio's second season as head coach, the Broncos lost their star defensive player in Von Miller for the season after he sustained an injury. The Broncos began the 2020 season with a 16–14 loss to the Tennessee Titans on September 14, 2020.[23] On September 21, 2020, Fangio was fined US$100,000 by the NFL for not properly wearing a face mask, as required for coaches during the COVID-19 pandemic, during a Week 2 game.[24] On November 28, 2020, Broncos' backup quarterback Jeff Driskel had tested positive for COVID-19, and starting quarterback Drew Lock, as well as third and fourth quarterbacks Brett Rypien and Blake Bortles, had been in physical contact with Driskel without wearing protective masks. Accordingly, all four were placed in league-mandated quarantine and were deemed ineligible to play in the Week 12 game against the New Orleans Saints on November 29, 2020. Undrafted wide receiver Kendall Hinton, who played quarterback at Wake Forest and was promoted from the practice squad, served as the emergency starter, with running back Royce Freeman as the backup.[25] The Broncos would go on to lose against the Saints by a score of 31–3. Lock, Rypien and Bortles were activated from the Reserve/COVID-19 list on December 1, 2020 and returned to the active roster in preparation for the team's Week 13 game at the Kansas City Chiefs,[26] while Driskel returned to the active roster on December 16, 2020.[27] On December 2, 2020, Fangio announced that the team had fined all four of its quarterbacks for violating COVID-19 protocols and not wearing masks while in close contact of each other.[28] In his second season, Fangio led the Broncos to a 5–11 record, finishing 4th in the AFC West.

2021 season

See also: 2021 Denver Broncos season

Fangio led the Broncos to a 3–0 start before going 4–10 the rest of the way. After the Broncos lost to the Kansas City Chiefs in the regular season finale, the Broncos parted ways with Fangio.[29] Fangio finished his tenure with the Broncos with a 19–30 (.388) record in three seasons.

On February 12, 2022, following his departure from Denver, Fangio announced that he would not coach with a team during the 2022 season.[30]

Head coaching record

Team Year Regular season Post season
Won Lost Ties Win % Finish Won Lost Win % Result
DEN 2019 7 9 0 .438 2nd in AFC West
DEN 2020 5 11 0 .313 4th in AFC West
DEN 2021 7 10 0 .412 4th in AFC West
Total 19 30 0 .388 0 0 .000

References

  1. ^ "Vic Fangio". www.denverbroncos.com. Denver Broncos.
  2. ^ "Vic Fangio Senior on Dunmore High football team". The News-Item. December 2, 1975. p. 11. Retrieved January 9, 2019.
  3. ^ "NFC Championship - Carolina Panthers at Green Bay Packers - January 12th, 1997". Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved October 2, 2020.
  4. ^ Wilson, Aaron (December 5, 2019). "Broncos' Vic Fangio recalls time with Texans". Houston Chronicle. Retrieved October 2, 2020.
  5. ^ "Vic Fangio told Bob McNair the Texans would beat the Cowboys in franchise's first game". Texans Wire. December 5, 2019. Retrieved October 2, 2020.
  6. ^ "Fangio-Kubiak is the best duo Elway could have hoped for". Predominantly Orange. January 10, 2019. Retrieved October 2, 2020.
  7. ^ "Bio: Vic Fangio". Stanford University. Archived from the original on January 6, 2012.
  8. ^ Fucillo, David (January 15, 2015). "Fangio, Donatell, Leavitt released from contracts". Niners Nation. Retrieved October 2, 2020.
  9. ^ Wright, Michael C. (January 20, 2015). "Vic Fangio new Bears D-coordinator". ESPN. Retrieved January 20, 2015.
  10. ^ Potash, Mark (January 25, 2017). "Bears upgrade their coaching staff: Vic Fangio with OLBs". Chicago Sun-Times. Retrieved January 27, 2017.
  11. ^ Williams, Charean (January 12, 2018). "Bears keep Vic Fangio, hire Mike Furrey". Profootballtalk.com. Retrieved January 12, 2018.
  12. ^ Stankevitz, JJ (January 7, 2018). "Where the Bears' coaching search stands after one week and six interviews". WMAQ-TV. Retrieved January 8, 2018.
  13. ^ Dickerson, Jeff (January 12, 2018). "Vic Fangio agrees to new deal to remain with Bears". ESPN.com. Retrieved January 12, 2018.
  14. ^ Potash, Mark (January 13, 2018). "Return of DC Vic Fangio another big win for new Bears coach Matt Nagy". Chicago Sun-Times. Retrieved February 21, 2019.
  15. ^ Biggs, Brad (December 27, 2018). "With Vic Fangio sure to be in demand, the Bears might need to think outside the box to keep the defensive mastermind". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved February 11, 2019.
  16. ^ Carroll, Charlotte (January 9, 2019). "Report: Vic Fangio Reaches Four-Year Deal With Broncos to Be New Head Coach". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved January 9, 2019.
  17. ^ Swanson, Ben (January 17, 2019). "PFWA selects Vic Fangio as 2018 NFL Assistant Coach of the Year". Denver Broncos. Retrieved January 17, 2019.
  18. ^ "Former Bears defensive coordinator Vic Fangio named NFL Assistant Coach of the Year". USA Today. Associated Press. February 2, 2019. Retrieved February 2, 2019.
  19. ^ DiLalla, Aric (January 10, 2019). "Broncos agree to terms with Vic Fangio to become head coach". DenverBroncos.com. Retrieved January 10, 2019.
  20. ^ Biggs, Brad (January 15, 2019). "Ed Donatell leaving Bears to be Broncos defensive coordinator under Vic Fangio". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved January 15, 2019.
  21. ^ DiLalla, Aric (January 15, 2019). "Broncos agree to terms with Brandon Staley as outside linebackers coach". Denver Broncos. Retrieved January 18, 2019.
  22. ^ "Denver Broncos 2019 Games and Schedule". Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved October 2, 2020.
  23. ^ "Tennessee Titans at Denver Broncos - September 14th, 2020". Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved October 2, 2020.
  24. ^ "Sources: NFL fines Broncos' Vic Fangio, Seahawks' Pete Carroll, 49ers' Kyle Shanahan $100K each for mask noncompliance". ESPN.com. September 21, 2020. Retrieved November 10, 2020.
  25. ^ "Broncos to face Saints without QB Drew Lock, both backups after all were deemed high-risk contacts". NFL. November 29, 2020. Retrieved November 29, 2020.
  26. ^ DiLalla, Aric (December 1, 2020). "Broncos activate Drew Lock, Brett Rypien, Blake Bortles from Reserve/COVID-19 list". Denver Broncos. Retrieved December 1, 2020.
  27. ^ DiLalla, Aric (December 16, 2020). "Broncos sign CB Parnell Motley off 49ers' practice squad, activate Jeff Driskel from Reserve/COVID-19 list". Denver Broncos. Retrieved December 16, 2020.
  28. ^ Legwold, Jeff (December 2, 2020). "Four Denver Broncos QBs fined by team for not wearing masks". www.espn.com. Retrieved January 5, 2021.
  29. ^ "Broncos fire HC Vic Fangio after three seasons". NFL.com. Retrieved January 9, 2022.
  30. ^ "Former Broncos head coach Vic Fangio won't coach in 2022". February 13, 2022.