Celebration shows McDaniels' strength

October 12, 2009
photo - Josh McDaniels Photo by AP PHOTO
Josh McDaniels Photo by AP PHOTO 

ENGLEWOOD • Josh McDaniels’ exuberant celebration after Sunday’s overtime win, with emphatic fist pumps, screams and a leap into defensive end Kenny Peterson’s arms, brought to mind a question.

Would former Denver Broncos coach Mike Shanahan have ever done that? Perhaps a better question is, would any other NFL coach do that?

There aren’t many. But when the Broncos took a chance hiring a coach who is only 34 years old, one of the hopes was the energy he displayed in the job interview would rub off on the franchise.

“It was clear to (Broncos owner) Pat Bowlen that Josh was an excellent communicator, and how he communicated during the interview process lent itself to him displaying that energy and enthusiasm,” Broncos chief operating officer Joe Ellis said. “Pat felt players could feed off of that. More than that, the entire organization has fed off that. The culture change took place right after he was hired.”

His postgame celebration — which is definitely one thing he didn’t learn that from mentor Bill Belichick — was fresh and fun. And it wasn’t just because he beat New England. McDaniels often shows his emotions on the sideline.

McDaniels, who sports a crew cut, joked he was letting his hair down after Sunday’s game. He had good reason. As he said Monday, he’s having a lot of fun with this head coaching thing.

“I grew up the son of a coach and losing stinks,” McDaniels said. “We work too hard to not enjoy the wins or we work too hard to try to minimize any success we might have in a weekend.”

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