HONOLULU -- Denver Broncos cornerback Champ Bailey was visibly disappointed Tuesday upon learning that his defensive coordinator, Dennis Allen, had agreed to become coach of the AFC West rival Oakland Raiders.
"It will be another coordinator," Bailey said when told of the news at the Pro Bowl. "... I might sound a little selfish. I'm happy for him, don't get me wrong. At the same time, I'm thinking about our team. That's another change for us."
When the Broncos hire Allen's replacement, it will be their seventh defensive coordinator since Bailey joined the team in 2004. Actually, it also will be Denver's seventh defensive coordinator in a seven-year span (Larry Coyer, Jim Bates, Bob Slowik, Mike Nolan, Don "Wink" Martindale, Allen).
Bailey was effusive in his praise of Allen, describing the coach as "intense." Allen, who the Broncos brought over from the New Orleans Saints before the season, was a big part of the Denver defense's emergence.
"He knew how to get us ready," Bailey said. "I give him a lot of credit for the success we had this year.
"(He's) serious about the business," Bailey added. "He's one of the most intense coaches I've had. It was a pleasure working with him. You knew what he was going to bring you every day."
Now Bailey and his teammates will be tasked with facing their former coach twice per year, a prospect that didn't seem to overly excite the cornerback.
"I know what type of team he's going to have," Bailey said. "Very intense, hard-nosed, tough. That's the way he is. That's what I expect his team to be."
"First and foremost, they're getting a guy that's going to come in right away, and he's going to get it done," Miller said. "That's what he did for us. He came in, he laid out a plan for us, he told us, 'This is how we're going to do it, and this will work,' and that's what happened. We improved our defense an incredible amount. It was a night and day team from a year before.
"I think he'll do the same thing with the Oakland Raiders."