Monday, January 10, 2022

Brian Flores

Who is right and who is wrong is something we will come to know in a few years.  Since the Dolphins hired Brian Flores as their coach I have been impressed, but had some concerns.  It goes back to Minkah Fitzpatrick.  Why do you let a player as good as Fitzpatrick go when you're a defensive minded coach?  It then goes to Kyle Van Noy.  They bring Van Noy in, we all assumed because Flores wanted him, and then he's gone back to New England.  The classic case where they are still paying him to go play for New England scenario.  Then there is the rotating door at offensive coordinator.  The strangest one to me being Chan Gailey.  They draft who everyone believes to be their long term solution at quarterback, but then bring in an offensive coordinator who it seems is there because of his connection with Fitzpatrick, the old veteran QB that is only there assumed for half a year as a starter.  It seemed so strange.  Then when Gailey retires they bring in two offensive coordinators?  Then of course there is the bust draft picks at offensive line.  Miami has sunk a lot of draft capital into their offensive line, but they still have one of the worst offensive lines in the NFL.  The main reason they were running the offense they ran this year was because of their poor offensive line.  Is this just bad coaching?  Does Flores not no any offensive coaches that he can bring in to help this situation.  

It's funny but when Dan Campbell got hired in Detroit, the NFL writers had a good laugh at his press conference, but then they all turned around and said,  you know this guy may do OK because he surrounded himself with highly respected, young, up and coming NFL coaches at every level.  I've never heard anyone talk about the coaches that Flores has on his staff, is he failing to make good hires.  

When Miami lost to Jacksonville this year in London, I will admit I was ready to heap all of these concerns on Flores and say he has got to go.  But then Miami closed out the year 8-1.  I have been a Dolphins fan all my life and I've really struggled over these past 20 years.  One thing I have learned is that you don't discount wins.  Wins are everything.  Flores has put up winning records the last two seasons.  The last time Miami put up back to back winning records was 2002-2003.  Now it seems the Dolphins are taking a gamble that the GM is the one to get the credit for their current success and not the coach.  Grier has been with the Dolphins since 2016, he's the one that brought Flores in.  In that time Miami is 47-50.  Funny but it's about the same, percentage wise, as Flores who was 24-25, but who was over .500 in his last two seasons.  Remember in 2019 many people thought the Dolphins had the worst roster ever put on an NFL field and they went 5-11.  Detroit this year, who are the 2019 Dolphins team of this season, went 3-13-1.  Like I said I've learned that wins means something and so I'm left thinking the Dolphins may have just picked the wrong side.

Let's go back and think about all the problems I have with Flores.  First off we don't know how much control he has in personnel or in coaches.  So we don't really know if he's the one that wanted Van Noy or if that was Grier.  Same with Minkah Fitzpatrick.  Remember that team was supposed to be tanking for Tua and so dumping Fitzpatrick seemed to fit what they were doing.  That worst offensive line in football is the worst in part because they traded away a young, top level left tackle for picks.  What have they done with those picks?  Are the offensive lineman bad because Flores and his coaches aren't good, or because they drafted poorly?  They built all this draft capitol then traded up this year to pick a wide receiver.  Arguably the Eagles got as good or better receiver for the pick the Dolphins traded with them and now the Eagles have their number 1 pick this year.  

In a few years we will know who was right and who was wrong.  I'm hoping the Dolphins chose right, but I kind of doubt it.  


1 comment:

  1. I nearly ruined a perfectly beautiful day of driving Monday with my wife on I-40 across eastern Tennessee in my fury over the firing of Brian Flores.

    Everything you say here, including the conclusion, is right where I am. My guess is that Brian Flores is going to end up being a quite good coach for my (second) Bears and that the Dolphins will end up hiring a coach (I hope it's Daboll, just to get him out of Buffalo) who uses Tua more aggressively and effectively and frustrates away defensive coaches and players who are most loyal to Flores. So I bet that adds up to another .500-or-so season for Miami next season, then a dropoff to about six wins in 2023 once the defense has been gutted and Tua has his next major injury. At that point, Grier will be gone, too.

    Oh, I also predict that Stephen Ross will still be really, really rich in 2023.