As the Miami Dolphins await new head coach Brian Flores, the idea of a defensive hire amid the offensive revolution deserves scrutiny. For the first time in Super Bowl history, the four highest scoring teams in the league head into the conference championship games. A place Miami has not seen since 1992, over 25 years ago.
The ancient axiom, defense wins championships, has followed the Dolphins into obscurity. Of the four remaining teams, only the Patriot defense, ranking seventh in points allowed, was better than the league average. The Saints, Chiefs, Rams and Patriots outscored their opponents by a combined 549 points, ranking first, second, third and fifth in point differential.
Here’s the saddest fact of all, the Patriots have the lowest scoring average of the four remaining teams at 27.3 points. The last time the Miami Dolphins averaged anywhere close to that was in 1984. The epic second season of a kid named Dan Marino.
The intent is not to ostracize Brian Flores for being a defensive coach, but as the Patriot’s LB coach and defensive play caller, he certainly is not an offensive guru. This hire reeks of Chris Grier bringing in a friendly face to quell his personal job insecurity. Is it understandable for a first time GM to hire a man he’s well acquainted with, but is it in best interest of the Miami Dolphins?
This is consistent with the failings of Stephen Ross. His lack of football knowledge leaves him unable to determine the direction of his football team. Grier may indeed have a solid plan to re-build the Dolphin franchise, but any plan in 2019 and beyond must sway decidedly toward the offense.
There is a reason all the Dolphin coaching candidates are still available, none of them is an offensive coach. Even if Flores has an offensive coordinator up his sleeve, the longevity will be fleeting. As soon as the Miami offense achieves any level of success, the OC will become the hot coordinator of the moment and leave to try his luck as a head coach.
Flores is no Bill Belichick. Even sprouting from the Belichick tree says little about his potential. He landed the Miami job because of New England’s success, but consider the esteemed names that came before him. Bill O’Brien has had a little success at 42-38 (1-3 in playoffs), but Eric Mangini: 33-47, Romeo Crennel: 28-55, Josh McDaniels: 11-17, Matt Patricia: 6-10.
In a league that has litigated out any form of dominant defense, the highest-flying offenses are vying for the title. The Miami Dolphins last attainted any level of success when the team had the highest scoring offense in the league, that was 1984.
Hello, fucking 34 years ago!
Yet the Dolphins hire a Linebacker coach because the rookie GM is comfortable with him?
The team has publicly stated it will draft a franchise quarterback in the next several years. There’s a reason Bill Belichick wins, and Andy Reed Wins, and Bill Walsh won, and Don Shula won, it’s because they can see and coach greatness at the QB position.
Stephen Ross has entrusted a rookie GM that was the head of college scouting when Miami last picked a first round QB. That was Ryan Tannehill and Chris Grier never spoke loud enough to draft another in seven years when it was apparent Tannehill was nothing special.
The irony in this decision making process is, a linebacker coach is now expected to somehow select and teach the quarterback that will define the future of the Miami Dolphins…
Ross has done it again, he’s left his franchise hanging on a whim, good to be rich one guesses…
Pundits will say Bill Belichick is a defensive coach, and while it’s true, Belichick evolved his offense around Tom Brady. After so long with Brady, Belichick doesn’t need stability at offensive coordinator, the coaches are interchangeable. None has had great success after leaving the system, but Grier expects Flores to be different.
Every person with a modicum of NFL football knowledge knows that a great QB leads every good team in the league. Miami can talk the talk about drafting a QB in the near future. The problem is, what does the team do then, hire a whisperer? Isn’t that putting the cart in front of the horse? If there is no one who understands what a great QB looks like, how can the team acquire one?
We’re going to build from the inside out… Bla bla fucking bla bla… It’s like Bart Simpson. Miami made a declaration, we’re drafting a franchise QB in 2020 and will concentrate on the interior line in 2019. Franchise QBs don’t fall out of the sky. Tua this and some other guy that in 2020, no one knows if those guys will even be available in two years.
It’s the same mistake Bill Parcels made when he thought he was the smartest football guy in the room. Let’s draft Jake Long and leave Matty Ice out there because, oh we’re building from the inside out. No, Chad Pennington was too frail, Chad Henne was nothing more than a backup and let’s not even get into Pat White. They don’t grow on trees and thinking they do will get you fired.
The point is, hiring a defensive coach 2019 is a questionable decision. Waiting for a franchise QB to fall in your lap is a questionable decision. Hiring a GM who doesn’t understand these facts is a questionable decision.
But this is nothing new…
Stephen Ross may be a real estate genius, but football…
Not so much…
Meanwhile Miami fans wait for a man who can go to the Super Bowl with David Woodley and still pick Dan Marino in the following draft. A man who knows what a great QB looks like.
Stephen Ross, is not that man and it doesn’t look like he hired that man either.