Classy Gary Kubiak Explains Why He Left Baltimore For Denver

Gary Kubiak took the podium in Denver Tuesday afternoon to get introduced as the 15th head coach in Broncos history.

But before he addressed his future with the Broncos, he started by looking back at his one year as the Ravens offensive coordinator.

"First off, I want to thank the Baltimore Ravens. That was extremely important to me," Kubiak said. "It's been a heck of year for [me], and without that organization giving me an opportunity about this same time last year, I probably wouldn't be here today. I really want to thank Steve [Bisciotti], Ozzie [Newsome], John [Harbaugh], the players, the organization.

"I was proud to be a part of them, and I appreciate the opportunity they gave me. It was a wonderful experience and I learned a great deal."

Kubiak's arrival in Denver was a quick, somewhat unexpected chain of events that occurred over the last week. He initially turned down interview requests from the Chicago Bears and New York Jets, saying that he wanted to remain in Baltimore in 2015.

But then the Broncos fired Head Coach John Fox after a divisional-round exit, and Kubiak's old teammate John Elway came calling. Kubiak had spent 20 years with the Broncos as a player and a coach.

He said the Broncos job was the only opportunity that could pull him away from Baltimore.

"This is a game changer. It's as simple as that. Those are the same words I used to Coach Harbaugh when we talked," Kubiak said. "This is where I got my start. This is home for me. This means so much to me."

The interest between Kubiak and the Broncos was mutual, as Elway said that he was "at the top of the list" during their brief coaching search.

Kubiak's one season in Baltimore was a success for both sides. He drastically improved the offense, and turned the unit into one of the best in franchise history. The Ravens set franchise records in yards and points per game, and quarterback Joe Flacco enjoyed the best season of his career.

Kubiak also had a chance to get back to his offensive roots after an eight-year run as the head coach of the Houston Texans.

"I really can't explain the value of last year for me as a coach, being around John Harbaugh, being around that organization, being around Ozzie Newsome, watching them go about their business, watching how they go about being successful week in and week out," Kubiak said. "I take all of that with me as I move forward."

The Ravens will continue their search for an offensive coordinator, and they will get a chance to see Kubiak again in the near future when they travel to Denver next season to face off with the Broncos.

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