New Broncos coach Fox begins filling assistant spots

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- Mike McCoy is staying on as the Denver Broncos' offensive coordinator, providing some continuity for raw rookie quarterback Tim Tebow.

And Eric Studesville, who served as interim head coach for the final four games last season, is returning at the Broncos' running backs coach.

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New coach John Fox announced eight members of his Broncos staff Monday, six of whom he inherited in Denver and two members of his staff from the Carolina Panthers, whom he coached the last nine seasons.

Other holdovers are Clancy Barone (tight ends), Wayne Nunnely (defensive line), Brian Callahan (offensive quality control) and Jay Rodgers (defensive quality control). Fox is bringing offensive line coach Dave Magazu and wide receivers coach Tyke Tolbert from the Panthers.

Fox is still filling some positions, including defensive coordinator and special teams coach.

McCoy, who will call plays, is both a holdover and an old hand in Fox's systems. He served seven seasons under Fox in Carolina as offensive assistant, quarterbacks coach and passing game coordinator before joining the Broncos as Josh McDaniels' offensive coordinator in 2009.

"I might even know him better than the people here in the Broncos organization," Fox said of McCoy last week. "I definitely hold him in high regard."

McCoy has overseen a half-dozen 3,000-yard passing seasons from quarterbacks, including four from Jake Delhomme and two from Kyle Orton. McCoy wasn't the primary play-caller until McDaniels' firing Dec. 6.

Under McCoy's tutelage, Tebow threw four touchdown passes and ran for three while starting in the final three games of last season. Tebow's 82.1 passer rating was the highest of the NFL's eight rookie starting quarterbacks, and Orton ranked fourth in the NFL with 281 passing yards per game.

Magazu became Carolina's offensive line coach in 2007, which coincided with the Panthers' shift to the zone-blocking scheme that took hold in 2008. Since then, only the New York Jets have rushed for more yards than Carolina, which became the first team ever to have two 1,100-yard rushers in the same season (DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart in 2009).

Fox said he'd return the zone-blocking, one-cut scheme to the Broncos, who abandoned that style under McDaniels in favor of a power scheme that often stalled behind a young offensive line.

Studesville went 1-3 as interim head coach after McDaniels' dismissal and was one of five candidates who interviewed for the head-coaching job that went to Fox.

Studesville's appointment means Fox won't have his longtime lieutenant Jim Skipper in that role in Denver. But Skipper still might join Fox's staff, although he has opportunities elsewhere in the NFL to coach running backs.

Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press

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