As we look back on the past three seasons, Adam Gase celebrating wins, mainly at home have been more of a common occurrence.
The Dolphins in the latter half of the Gase era have been woefully bad in 2018 going 1-6 on the road.
The Dolphins are now 7-7 after yet another road loss.
While the coaching position in Miami is tenuous at best with owner Stephen Ross still evaluating and not making a decision on his coach and front office, the Dolphins aren’t the same as the 2016 team who largely seemed unfazed in each and every matchup winning every game in November and losing two games in December to finish with a 10-6 record.
This Dolphin team who was picked to finish with 3 or 5 losses depending on the pre-season predictions, has seven wins with several players placed on IR.
So the question remains: should Adam Gase be the coach in 2019?
For one, the Dolphins have suffered setbacks greatly with injuries, but Gase has always been about a “next man up” mentality.
The Dolphins are constantly unraveling in the closing seconds and the only big and notable win has been Miami Miracle finish versus the Patriots two weeks ago.
As of now, the Dolphins have more wins by less than a touchdown than any team in the NFL.
It’s like they crave the big moments, but cave when they matter with both an offensive and defensive lapse with the special teams unit started to show wear.
And, these poor starts and poor performances beg the question that are greater than Ryan Tannehill who plays not to lose or is placed in a position that sets him up for failure.
So, is Gase safe?
Here are my thoughts and they are my own:
Adam Gase took the job knowing full-well he was going to have to “fix” Tannehill.
In my opinion, there wasn’t a ton to fix except for his awareness and deep ball.
Furthermore, Tannehill seemed to be rising in spite of his aggressiveness leading to interceptions.
Tannehill’s footwork before his ACL injury in 2016 was phenomenal in that he would step into his throws.
This season, Tannehill was supposed to take the next step with this offense with this offense and with Gase as the offensive genius.
A shoulder capsule injury as well as some general knee soreness has kept him from being the athletic Tannehill to a more immobile player who has regressed to the 2015 version of Tannehill lacking confidence and taking some bad sacks.
Is that Gase’s fault?
Yes. It’s his fault entirely because he failed to draft the QB and went with guys he knew-Brock Osweiler and David Fales.
However, Adam Gase, if the source’s account supplied by Matthew Cannata of the Phinsider shared via Twitter is correct, Gase pounded the table about a QB and wasn’t listened to.
This idea makes sense especially with Stephen Ross privately sharing he wanted a QB in round 1 instead of drafting defensive back Minkah Fitzpatrick.
Ross has been very very silent about his wishes, but he will soon speak and it won’t be prompted by an emotional decision as he has in the past with both Sparano and Philbin.
Then there has been the media’s flirtation with connecting Jim Harbaugh, the current head coach of Michigan and Steve Ross and the Dolphins.
It’s like Ross is the puppet master that lured Harbaugh to Michigan and could welcome him to Miami.
While anything is possible, here’s what I suggest:
Adam Gase comes back under these circumstances:
1. He agrees to handover the play calling duties to an OC such as Dowell Loggains.
2. He hires a superior Defensive coach: maybe bring back Vance Joseph if he’s fired by Denver? Vance might be better than current DC Matt Burke, but we’ll see.
3. He agrees to the hiring of a new GM and a new power structure- new football ops
If Gase can agree to these conditions, I say he stays and he probably earns the token extension to prove himself another year.
While Gase is a great locker room coach, perhaps too much of a players coach, but he’s had issues and personality conflicts with unsavory characters such as Jay Ajayi (Super Bowl champ with the Eagles), Jarvis Landry (has helped the Browns play winning football), Ndamukong Suh (big role with the LA Rams) and Mike Pouncey (going to the playoffs with the Chargers).
If the Dolphins lose the next two games, Gase is good as gone, but if the Dolphins fight, Ross will see he has a guy that’s willing to fight for his job and willing to do what it takes to continue as coach of the Miami Dolphins.
This much is known, Stephen Ross is the owner and he makes the final decision.
Photo Credit (Palm Beach Post)