ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — So far, the reviews for the Broncos’ new head coach have been positive from the people who count.
“Coach Fangio is awesome," said tight end Jeff Heuerman. “I really like him and how he handles himself."
New Bronco defensive back Bryce Callahan said he signed with Denver as a free agent primarily because of Vic Fangio. Yes, the three-year, $21 million contract was a factor, too. But primarily because of Vic. Callahan played the previous four years for Fangio with the Chicago Bears. Fangio was the Bears' defensive coordinator.
“He’s got kind of that swag to him I guess, I don’t know," Callahan said. “Kind of a mafia guy."
Callahan dubbed him, “The Godfather” last year. Bears’ pass rusher Khalil Mack said Fangio has that “Italian Mafia kind of swag to him."
Fangio is proud of his Italian heritage. He does have the look and quiet, mysterious manner of a Boss.
“It’s how he carries himself and he’s always straightforward with you, and stuff like that," Callahan said. “I think he has some sort of mafia background, I don’t know."
He laughed, then added, “just kidding.”
This is still the honeymoon period for Fangio. He hasn’t lost a game, yet. Hasn’t won one, either. But it’s possible Fangio will turn out to be the Broncos’ No. 1 pickup of the offseason — more than Joe Flacco, more than Kareem Jackson, more than Ja’Wuan James, Noah Fant or Dalton Risner.
The Broncos signed fifth-round linebacker Justin Hollins to a four-year, $2.83 million contract – a $306,836 signing bonus, plus four minimum salaries of $495,000 this year; $585,000 in 2020; $675,000 in 2021; and $765,000 in 2022.
The Broncos still have to sign their top four picks from the first three rounds – Fant, Risner, Drew Lock and Dre’Mont Jones.
The Broncos placed offensive lineman Nico Falah on season-ending injured reserve with a torn Achilles injury.