The New Orleans Saints lost to the San Francisco 49ers in the Divisional round of the NFL Playoffs today, and that's good news for the Miami Dolphins. In a week that saw the Dolphins lose their top coaching candidate, Jeff Fisher, to the St. Louis Rams, Miami is putting more hooks in the water, and hoping to catch a new lead candidate.
Which brings us to the Saints loss. With the team eliminated from the playoffs, the Dolphins are free to start asking for permission to speak to New Orleans assistants and start setting up interviews. Immediately, that means Pete Carmichael, Jr., the Saints' offensive coordinator, is now available. The Dolphins reportedly have had Carmichael on their radar, and can now start making moves to bring the coach to Miami - even if it's just for an interview.
As was reported yesterday, the Dolphins are also looking to interview Mike McCoy, the Denver Broncos' offensive coordinator who, like Carmichael, was bounced from the playoffs yesterday. However, with the miserable showing the Broncos had in their 45-10 loss to the New England Patriots, question about the Dolphins' continued desire to meet with McCoy are sure to be raised.
Yesterday, the Dolphins reportedly conducted an interview; however, no name has been announced, formally by the team or informally through leaks. Speculation placed Dave Toub, the special teams coach for the Chicago Bears, in line for a second interview with the team, but nothing has been confirmed.
The Dolphins are also thought to be planning a second interview for Cincinnati Bengals defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer.
Miami has already interview interim head coach Todd Bowles and Green Bay Packers Joe Philbin, along with Toub and Zimmer. The team is believed to have interest in Baltimore Ravens defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano as well, but cannot approach him until the Ravens are eliminated from the playorrs, or the week before the Super Bowl, should the team make it that far. Baltimore hosts the Divisional Playoff game with the Houston Texans later today.
One of the top candidates, from a fan view point, has yet to be mentioned as a possible candidate for the team. Rob Chudzinski, the offensive coordinator for the Carolina Panthers, is a popular name among fans and media speculation, but no reports of any interest from the Dolphins, or contact with the Panthers, have been made.
The Dolphins are planning to continue to interview possible head coaches until they exhaust their list., before either hiring one of the candidates, or starting a second round of interviews with the top contenders.