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Fire Nathaniel Hackett Hashtag Trending Among Denver Broncos Fans

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On September 25, the Denver Broncos will face the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday night football – the NFL’s most publicized showcase. But instead of looking forward to seeing new quarterback Russell Wilson work the magic that made him a Super Bowl champion, many fans are busy tweeting #firehackett, a hashtag targeting the head coach of first year on the team, Nathaniel Hackett.

A flurry of #firehackett messages swept through the cybersphere immediately after the Broncos’ last game, Sept. 18, against the dismal Houston Texans — a win, sure, but by a score much closer (16-9) than anyone realizes. was waiting. to a series of unfortunate events that could all be linked to Hackett. Among them: a Wilson-led offense that often resembled footage of an airplane imploding in slow motion; so many penalties that yellow flag makers likely had to work overtime just to maintain supplies in the fourth quarter; and the kind of clock management that can make Big Ben’s head snap.

Not everyone who deployed the hashtag felt it was time to give up hope on the new coach. One person wrote on Twitter: “Wow! #BroncosCountry already calling #firehackett??? 2 games in??? I know he’s showing his inexperience right [that] what do you get when you hire an HC for the first time? RELAX.”

This advice did not stifle the flow. Many #firehacketts continued to appear in the days following the Texans’ victory, with users’ belief that Hackett needed redemption seeming to grow by the day. A guy tweeted #firehackett in response to the Broncos’ Twitter account 23 times yesterday. Yes, 23.

One reason for that is growing fears that Denver is once again about to be humiliated on national television. Most pundits had the Broncos beating the 49ers because they were playing at home and San Francisco would be led by Trey Lance, the team’s designated quarterback of the future, but completely unproven in the present. But in the 49ers’ previous contest, against the Seattle Seahawks, Lance broke his leg, ending his season prematurely – and his replacement, the much more experienced Jimmy Garoppolo, quickly led his mates to a 27-win. 7.

Note that the Broncos lost to the Seahawks 17-16 in an even bigger debacle from Hackett on Monday night football six days earlier.

How did Hackett ever generate so much disdain? Much of the backlash can be attributed to expectations. Denver has had a succession of failed quarterbacks since the retirement of Peyton Manning, racking up a record that hasn’t been so poor since the 1960s, when the fledgling franchise was best known for its ghastly yellow and brown vertical striped socks than the grill. glory. Even though the idea that Wilson’s mere presence would solve all of the Broncos’ ills was hopelessly naïve, many boosters were desperate enough to believe it anyway.

Meanwhile, the perception of Hackett, the former Green Bay Packers offensive coordinator, was that he was hired to lure quarterback Aaron Rogers to Colorado. Instead, Rogers essentially used Denver’s interest in him to secure a giant Pack contract – and while Hackett made a positive first impression in Colorado with his upbeat personality, which contrasted sharply with the austere gloom of his predecessor Vic Fangio, his on-the-side performance throughout the campaign to date has effectively burned through all the goodwill he’s garnered. What’s more, he was hired before the new ownership group led by Walmart heir Rob Walton, daughter Carrie Walton Penner and son-in-law Greg Penner officially took over – so they have no personal stake in it. whether he stays or goes.

Not that Hackett is likely to be on a roll if the Broncos stink of him against San Francisco on Sunday. Canning it so soon would make Walton, the Penners and general manager George Paton look freaked out. But a loss – especially a loss in which the offense looks pathetic again and the coach spends precious seconds hesitating between kicking a field goal or going there on fourth down – will turn #firehackett from a hot hold into one of the hottest hashtags in Denver and beyond.