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Atlanta Falcons offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan before a game against the Washington Redskins at the Georgia Dome. Shanahan is a candidate for the Denver Broncos head coach opening. Photo by Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports
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Stokley: Broncos ‘impressed’ with Kyle Shanahan after interview Saturday

Atlanta Falcons offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan before a game against the Washington Redskins at the Georgia Dome. Shanahan is a candidate for the Denver Broncos head coach opening. Photo by Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Many from last week and over the weekend may have Miami Dolphins head coach Vance Joseph as the leading candidate for the Denver Broncos head coach opening, but Atlanta Falcons offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan might have pulled within striking distance.

According to “C.J. and Stokley” co-host Brandon Stokley, sources said Shanahan “impressed” during his meeting with the Broncos brass on Saturday in Atlanta.

“From people that I hear from, that interview, Kyle knocked it out of the park. He was unbelievable,” Stokley said Monday.

Mike Klis, 9News Broncos Insider, said that Denver’s executive group, including general manager John Elway, met with Shanahan for four hours Saturday morning

And although he was not privy to Shanahan’s pitch, Stokley said the Broncos presumably took a liking to the 37-year-old’s blueprint for improving Denver’s offensive attack along with developing its first-round draft pick, quarterback Paxton Lynch.

“I think he had a great plan in place, and they were really taken back by his plan of what he thinks the Denver Broncos will be in the future and how he will run that franchise,” Stokley said.

Shanahan’s Falcons finished No. 2 in the NFL in total offensive yards (6,653) while the Broncos ranked No. 27 (5,169) in 2016.  Atlanta also finished No. 3 in passing yards (4,725), No. 5 in rushing yards (1,928), and first in points scored (540).

Tyler Polumbus, guest hosting with Stokley Monday, said Shanahan needed to dazzle the Denver executives, especially with the club’s history with his father, Mike.

Mike Shanahan led Denver to its first two Super Bowl championships in 1997 and 1998 and earned a 138-86 record in nearly a decade and a half at the helm of the Broncos. However, a string of mediocre seasons between 2006 and 2008 (finishes of 9-7, 7-9, and 8-8) forced Mike Shanahan out as the head coach in Denver.

But Stokley said Denver needs to move past its history with Mike Shanahan for the sake of hiring the one person who can who can fix the Broncos offense: Kyle Shanahan.

“It just makes too much sense. Put everything else aside. All the Mike Shanahan stuff, everything that happened 10 years ago, it shouldn’t matter,” Stokley said. W”ho’s the best fit for your football team? I think it’s Kyle.”

Follow digital content producer Johnny Hart on Twitter: @johnnyhart7.