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Q&A with Dave Magazu

Posted Jun 10, 2011

Offensive Line Coach Dave Magazu talks about an unusual offseason, his philosophy for the line and Ryan Clady's potential.

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- Dave Magazu enters his first year with the Broncos in 2011 as the club's offensive line coach. In his ninth NFL season, Magazu also spent 23 years coaching offensive lines at the collegiate level.

Before the coaches headed on a short vacation, Magazu sat down with DenverBroncos.com for a Q&A session. 

What has this offseason been like for you?
"I think with everything being up in the air and not getting the opportunity to meet all the players, let's just start with face-to-face contact. I've had the opportunity to see some of those guys before the lockout happened and actually get to meet once with a couple guys, but there's nothing mandatory, so it's hard to get everybody together. I think that's the most frustrating part of the offseason. It's always exciting putting a new playbook together and exchanging ideas, getting that on paper. But it's a lot more fun trying to execute it than it is putting it on paper. So it's been a little frustrating, but things always happen for a reason and it will get worked out and we'll get back to coaching football, hopefully."

Has it given you an opportunity to do anything football-wise you normally wouldn't if there were OTAs and workouts?
"Probably too much, because you over-analyze everything from huddle to last play of the game. Obviously that's good in our situation, putting together a new playbook we had ample time to put things down on paper. But then again, how it looks on paper and how it looks in practice are two totally different animals. You want to get a feel for the guys and try to get a feel for who you can be personality-wise as an offense. Those are things that obviously we're missing right now."

What do you think of the Broncos offensive line from what you've seen on tape?
"Our whole thing and our approach will be to play with an attitude. I don't really care who we're playing, where we're playing them -- have an attitude and have those guys be able to set a tempo of a game. Be physical and be able to control the line of scrimmage. Whether we run it or we throw it, be able to control the line of scrimmage. I think there's a lot of young talent here, and I think there's a tremendous upside. If we just keep adding pieces to the puzzle, I think we have an opportunity to be what everybody wants us to be."

Is your philosophy for the line all about having an attitude?
"You have to have an attitude. People always say that you win the games up front or lose the games up front, and I believe that. I believe you run the football and you have to have a physical presence during the game. Every place I've been we've tried to preach that, to have a physical, attacking style. Whether it's run or pass, that doesn't matter. It's the attitude that you approach the game with and how you practice. It's just your general attitude, how you carry yourself, and then you back that up with a little bit of a swagger. All that takes time, but time is running out, too. So when this thing starts up again, we've got to jump right into it. I like the guys that I've seen on tape. I think we have potential, and right now that's all I can say -- it's potential."

The Broncos and Panthers played in 2008, Ryan Clady's rookie season. Did you see his potential then?
"I evaluated him when he was coming out, because (Carolina was) going to take a tackle in the first round and I thought he was one of the top tackles in that (2008 NFL) Draft. I think it was (Jake) Long, Ryan and Jeff Otah that I personally thought were the three best tackles in the draft that year, and I think if you look at it, that might be true -- those were the top three. There's no doubt in my mind Ryan Clady has the potential to be a good player for a long time, because he still is just a young guy."

How has this coaching staff blended since coming together at the end of January?
"I think another advantage I have coming here, (Offensive Coordinator) Mike (McCoy) and I worked together for quite a few years with the Panthers, and Mike knows John. We've all been together. We've been to battle. We know how to play off each other a little bit, so I feel very comfortable working with Mike and all the rest of the guys. Obviously I've worked with (Wide Receivers Coach) Tyke (Tolbert) before on offense, and you've got (Running Backs Coach) Eric (Studesville) and (Quarterback Coach) Adam (Gase), they've been around the block a couple times. So I think it's been a good mix, and I'm looking forward to seeing what we've got."