JERSEY CITY, N.J. -- As a first-year coordinator with the Denver Broncos, 35-year-old Adam Gase called the plays for an offense that set NFL records for points, passing yards and passing touchdowns in 2013.
When I sat down with quarterbacks coach Greg Knapp on Thursday, it immediately became evident that the coaching veteran of 19 NFL seasons has immense respect for the Gase-Manning dynamic.
"Adam Gase does a great job on a daily basis with Peyton," Knapp said. "When the play-caller and the quarterback are in sync as much as they are, you see the result on Sundays."
Knapp gives Gase full credit for the Broncos' up-tempo offense that kept defenses on their heels all season long.
"I'm telling you it's very special," Knapp continued. "It's special to hear how fast we call plays and how fast (Manning) processes it week in and week out ... It's just play fast, play up-tempo and push it, push it, push it. And it's hard to do that if you don't have the play-caller or the decision-maker (at quarterback). And it's really been impressive."
Being around the Broncos this week, one develops a sense that Gase's influence soon will extend well beyond Manning.
"He's a very capable, bright guy and I'm sure at some point we'll be lining up against each other, both in charge of two teams," defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio said Thursday. "That's something you can see happening for him and I'm sure he'll do a great job with it."
Gase has the luxury of working with Manning in the league's best offense until the quarterback decides to hang up his spikes. In the meantime, the head-coaching opportunities will be there if he wants to pursue them.