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Get to Know: Sam Garnes

Posted Dec 5, 2012

DenverBroncos.com chats with Assistant Secondary Coach Sam Garnes.

EDITOR'S NOTE: This story originally ran in the Week 13 Gameday program, when the Broncos defeated the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 31-23.

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- Assistant Secondary Coach Sam Garnes sits down with DenverBroncos.com to talk about the progress of the defensive backfield, coaching the safeties and what it's like work with Head Coach John Fox.

Now that you are in your second season in Denver, how comfortable are you with the city and the Broncos coaching staff?
"It seems like since we came over here with so many guys, it wasn't a big transition coming to a great organization, a great city, and I'm not just saying that. It's an easy transition because you had the welcoming mat, and the way they treated us when we got here, you can't help but bust your butt for this organization."

Having played safety, do you gravitate to that position as a coach?
"That's who I kind of spend most of my time with now. Safety is something I know. I had a lot of good teachers in my time, starting with John Fox, a bunch of good coaches that have kind of influenced me, so there's not too much I haven't seen. The game has changed, but playing safety is the same, so I'm very comfortable working with the safeties."

What is it like coaching under Head Coach John Fox, who you also played for?
"It's great. He's a man's man, he's a family man. He's all about winning. And with me, it's easy for me to work with anybody that wants to win. I know as a player he was brutally honest with you. And that's all you could expect from anybody you're working with. So whether it be a player or coach, you know what you're getting from him, and I really, truly appreciate that."
What are the differences between playing for Fox and coaching for him?
"Now, instead of him being on my back about plays that I should have made, now he's on my back about plays that a player should have made (laughing). It's not that much of a difference, he's still demanding and he expects a lot from us. You want to come through for him."
What do you think of the group of safeties?
"I love my group. I love working with those guys. Those guys are young and they're open to be coached and they want to be great. That's a mix that you want when you're working with any group. We have a good time together, it's great to be winning. We're always looking to make plays. One thing that we're missing, we miss Quinton (Carter). We miss having him around because we have a nice group and I think he fit in perfect with them. It was great with the addition of Mike (Adams) and Jim (Leonhard), or Rahim improving the way he has, the sky's the limit."

How valuable have veteran free agent safeties Mike Adams and Jim Leonhard been?
"No question. The great thing about those two, those two guys were in my top free agents. You never think you'll get two guys in our top free agents, and we got them both. And they both have helped us tremendously. We're ranked sixth in the league in defense. One thing you have to be able to do to be able to stop the run, you need to have guys that if the ball does bust through the front, get them down. And Jim and Mike have done a great job with that. Mike has played multiple roles for us and he's getting the job done. And Jim has come in, he's Johnny on the spot, he gets in the game and he makes plays. So we're very happy and we wouldn't want anybody else."

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