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ESPN Analyst Names NFL's 'Least Attractive' Coaching Job

A general view of the fans at a Denver Broncos game.

DENVER, CO - NOVEMBER 25: Quarterback Case Keenum #4 of the Denver Broncos drops back to pass in a general view in the second quarter of a game against the Pittsburgh Steelers at Broncos Stadium at Mile High on November 25, 2018 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)

The Denver Broncos created a head coaching vacancy by firing Nathaniel Hackett on Monday.

With only 32 possible positions, any open job will draw interest from prospective NFL coaches. However, Denver's next coach will inherit a difficult situation.

Discussing the position on ESPN's NFL Live, former quarterback Dan Orlovsky called it "the least attractive job in the NFL right now."

"Denver needs to find the needle in the haystack in many ways," Orlovsky said. "The guy that comes and takes this job, number one, has to get Russell Wilson playing at a high level."

Denver sent a massive haul to the Seattle Seahawks to acquire Wilson, who signed a five-year, $245 million extension during the offseason. The 34-year-old has endured the worst season of his career, throwing 12 touchdowns with an 82.6 quarterback rating in 13 games for the league's bottom-ranked scoring offense.

Given his hefty contract, a new coach likely won't be able to discard Wilson for a new quarterback. Orlovsky said Hackett's replacement must be willing to work with Wilson to turn the team around.

Orlovsky identified San Francisco 49ers defensive coordinator DeMeco Ryans and Kansas City Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy as some of the "hot names" in the NFL. Denver wouldn't be a desirable assignment for a first-time head coach, which is why Mina Kimes suggested the Broncos should ensure candidates job security beyond 2023 amid a rebuild.

An experienced, successful head coach like Sean Payton would probably be less likely to go to Denver, which dropped to 4-11 following Sunday's 51-14 loss to the Los Angeles Rams.