DENVER — In seeking his first deputy, Denver Broncos’ general manager George Paton considered several candidates inside the organization and out.
From within, Darren Mougey won his four-month, on-the-job interview with Paton.
The Broncos announced Friday that Mougey (pronounced: Moo-gee) has been promoted to fill Matt Russell’s former position as director of player personnel.
Russell had been GM John Elway’s right-hand man the previous nine years. Elway moved upstairs in January to a consultant role while Russell retired.
Mougey, 36, has worked his way from the bottom to one step from the top.
A 6-foot-6 quarterback converted to receiver at San Diego State, Mougey completed 60 of 103 passes (58.3 percent) as a passer and had 66 catches for 805 yards and 6 touchdowns in his final two years as a receiver in 2007-08. He played in training camps as a receiver for the Falcons in 2009 and Cardinals in 2010. When he didn't make their season-opening rosters, Mougey coached at his high school alma mater, Chaparral High in Scottsdale, Ariz., where in 2009 one of his fellow coaching assistants was Dave Ziegler.
Ziegler became a Broncos’ pro scout in 2010 and later recommended Mougey, who was hired on by Denver as personnel intern in 2012. Ziegler is now the right-hand man for Bill Belichick in New England while Mougey worked his way up the Broncos’ scouting chain until he was promoted to assistant director of college scouting last year, then made a quantum leap to Paton’s second in command.
The director of player personnel position oversees both college and pro scouting.
> Video above: More than 70 Broncos players show up Monday for start of Phase II offseason program.
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