The Miami Dolphins fired Joe Philbin four games into his fourth season.
Along with this news, I bring to you Michael Tanier’s Monday Morning Hangover, in which he says the Dolphins need to stop alternating between changing either the coach or front office, while keeping the other, and just clean house after the season.
A neat executive-coach-quarterback/core arrangement guarantees nothing. But a situation in which a coach who wasn’t hired by a general manager tries to lead players who were not selected by either of them guarantees failure. Sometimes, it’s a dull failure like the Dolphins have endured for years. Other times, it’s the spectacular 2015 Eagles situation: The coach ousts the general manager and moves mountains for a quarterback, and everything comes unglued quicker than a no-huddle offense.
There are instances in which a GM hires a coach, then fires him later for a new hire, has worked out, but it hasn’t worked out so much when the GM was fired and the coach retained under a new GM. Just ask the New York Jets (fired Mike Tannenbaum, hired John Izdik, kept Rex Ryan, both gone two seasons later) or the Chicago Bears (fired Jerry Angelo, hired Phil Emery, retained Lovie Smith, Smith later fired, Marc Trestman hired, he and Emery fired two seasons later).
Even worse for the Dolphins is they are stuck with Ndamukong Suh through at least 2017 thanks to a poor contract structure and could be stuck with him longer if the Dolphins decide to restructure his deal to gain cap space next season.