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NFL Twitter Clowns Broncos, Nathaniel Hackett and Russell Wilson After HC Is Fired

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured Columnist IVDecember 26, 2022

Denver Broncos head coach Nathaniel Hackett reacts against the Arizona Cardinals during the first half of an NFL football game Sunday, Dec. 18, 2022, in Denver. (AP Photo/Jack Dempsey)
AP Photo/Jack Dempsey

What has felt inevitable for quite some time finally happened on Monday—the Denver Broncos fired head coach Nathanial Hackett.

Denver Broncos @Broncos

We have parted ways with Head Coach Nathaniel Hackett.<br><br>A statement from Broncos Owner &amp; CEO Greg Penner: <a href="https://t.co/1tWMjHv6em">pic.twitter.com/1tWMjHv6em</a>

Albert Breer @AlbertBreer

Broncos owner/CEO Greg Penner says he'll lead the search for Hackett's replacement "with support from our ownership group and George (Paton)."<br><br>At least implies that the intention is to keep Paton on as GM. <a href="https://t.co/oFUgPpGwpm">https://t.co/oFUgPpGwpm</a>

No shocker there. The Broncos have limped to a 4-11 record in Hackett's first season, fresh off a 51-14 undressing against the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday.

Hackett, of course, is hardly alone in harboring the blame. Veteran quarterback Russell Wilson has been horrendous, general manager George Paton signed Wilson to a five-year, $245 million extension after trading 2022 and 2023 first- and second-round picks, among other assets, to land him, and the offense in general has been putrid.

And none were above reproach after Monday's move. NFL Twitter had a field day:

Field Yates @FieldYates

Nathaniel Hackett becomes just the 5th coach in NFL history to be fired before the end of his first season. <br><br>4-11 in 15 games. A disaster tenure.

Rodger Sherman @rodger

Do you think the Broncos will ever admit they hired Nathaniel Hackett because they thought they were going to get Aaron Rodgers and then just kinda had to live with it

Ian Rapoport @RapSheet

The product on the field for the <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Broncos?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Broncos</a> was bad. The QB play was bad. The fighting on the sideline was just as bad or maybe worse -- a sign the coach had no control over anything. Thus, the firing of <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Broncos?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Broncos</a> coach Nathaniel Hackett.

Chandler 🎅🏻🎄 @_chandler_____

Having Patrick Star commentate you throwing a pick has to be the lowest any NFL quarterback has ever been <a href="https://t.co/SMz4xGV2DQ">pic.twitter.com/SMz4xGV2DQ</a>

Mina Kimes @minakimes

Patrick Star really broke up the Broncos <a href="https://t.co/CsSCCKapYK">pic.twitter.com/CsSCCKapYK</a>

JosinaAnderson @JosinaAnderson

Though the <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Broncos?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Broncos</a> affirm they path forward with GM George Paton, my understanding is that he's told others &amp; knew he'd also been under evaluation over the back half of this season. The contact given to Russell Wilson speaks for itself, so far.

Tom Fornelli @TomFornelli

Now, to be clear, I understand this. I just think that if you're giving him this short of a leash, the guy who saddled you with Russ should suffer consequences too.

FanDuel Sportsbook @FDSportsbook

Russell Wilson seeing the Broncos fire Nathaniel Hackett: <a href="https://t.co/qROysidksd">pic.twitter.com/qROysidksd</a>

Action Network @ActionNetworkHQ

With Hackett fired, is it time to let Russ cook? <a href="https://t.co/nVoxDkB8je">pic.twitter.com/nVoxDkB8je</a>

Roberto Cartagena @bertocartagena

Like the famous line from Friday…<br><br>"How you get fired on your day off?"<br><br>Nathaniel Hackett is the worst HC I EVER seen in the <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/NFL?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#NFL</a> and man there's been a lot<br><br>Has there ever been a coach who got fired in his first season with only 2 games left to play? 🤔 <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/BroncosCountry?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#BroncosCountry</a> <a href="https://t.co/9To5ykb1lE">pic.twitter.com/9To5ykb1lE</a>

Paul🌎☮️Pacheco stan acct🔴🟡 @PaulHBK

Nathaniel Hackett's season as the Denver Broncos head coach: <a href="https://t.co/JoqZmD6su2">pic.twitter.com/JoqZmD6su2</a>

Shooter McGavin @ShooterMcGavin_

Russell Wilson driving Nathaniel Hackett to the airport <a href="https://t.co/ZG4HH5tsGa">pic.twitter.com/ZG4HH5tsGa</a>

theScore @theScore

Russell Wilson to Broncos fans after hearing Nathaniel Hackett was fired. 😅<a href="https://t.co/Hk5bxry11B">pic.twitter.com/Hk5bxry11B</a>

If you were to define the Broncos' season using only one word, it would probably be "calamity."

The offense is dead last in the NFL in points per game (15.5) and 26th in yards per contest (316.6). Wilson (3,019 yards, 12 touchdowns, nine interceptions, 60.1 completion percentage, 49 sacks taken) has been about as accurate and effective as Russell Westbrook shooting a three-pointer. It appeared Hackett fully lost the locker room.

Ari Meirov @MySportsUpdate

<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Broncos?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Broncos</a> backup Brett Rypien exchanged some words with the starting offensive line, defending Russell Wilson after he took another sack, per <a href="https://twitter.com/tracywolfson?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@tracywolfson</a>. Dalton Risner pushed Rypien out of the way. <br><br>Here's the video, via CBS:<a href="https://t.co/MR7TTCfEzK">pic.twitter.com/MR7TTCfEzK</a>

George Stoia III @GeorgeStoia

All season it felt like Nathaniel Hackett held together a sinking ship. The locker room hadn't fallen apart. <br><br>That changed yesterday. Obviously, everyone could see it on TV. But you could really feel it in that locker room yesterday. He had lost control. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Broncos?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Broncos</a>

It's all spoiled what has been a valiant effort from a defense holding opponents to 20.3 points per game, tied for seventh in the NFL.

So a change was necessary, and Hackett was the first domino to fall. But at this point, Wilson and Paton surely find themselves under a gaze of scrutiny from ownership as well.