(Image courtesy of Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
John Fox spent eight seasons in Carolina from 2002-10, coaching the Panthers to five post-season victories and a Super Bowl appearance (XXXVIII). On Sunday, Fox will be back on the sideline at Bank of America Stadium — this time coaching the apposing team, Denver.
“I have a lot of great relationships there,” Fox told the Denver Post. ”It was the place that gave me my first opportunity as a head coach, so I’ll always be indebted for that. I still have a home there. My sons live that way. It will be good to be back. But again it’s the NFL, this game’s only fun when you win.”
During his time in Carolina, Fox enjoyed ground game dominance and defensive success, but ultimately finished with a 85-82 career record with the Panthers. In Year 1 in Denver, Fox saw similar results, leading the league and rushing and improving Denver’s defense, the team was able to squeeze into the playoffs with an 8-8 record and win a playoff game thanks to an impressive running game and unorthodox offense which was complemented by a stout defense.
This season, the Broncos have found their man in quarterback Peyton Manning and are leading the AFC West with an 5-3 record. A win over the explosive Cam Newton and Fox’s former team, Carolina, would help the Broncos’ chances of finishing better than .500 this season, which Fox was only able to do three times with the Panthers.
“Right now we’re 5-3, and the only guarantee we have is 5-11,” remarked Fox. “So, you know, it will be just like any week from the standpoint of it’s the Denver Broncos against the Carolina Panthers at their place.”
The Broncos and Panthers will kickoff action at 11 a.m. (MT) on Sunday. The game will be broadcast on CBS and we’ll have complete coverage on Facebook, Twitter, and here on the blog.