The Miami Dolphins spent most of last season under interim head coach Dan Campbell after the team fired head coach Joe Philbin following the team's Week 4 loss to the New York Jets. A lot of things did not work for Miami under Philbin, who came to the team after serving as the offensive coordinator for the Green Bay Packers for five seasons, among which, a disappointing offensive line nears the top of the list.
Add in that Philbin's coaching career was built through being an offensive line coach, and the struggles of the offensive line over the past four years is even more disappointing. (Not to mention the Jonathan Martin, Richie Incognito, John Jerry, and Mike Pouncey mess.)
Philbin joined the Dolphins in 2012, the year the team drafted quarterback Ryan Tannehill in the first round. Since that selection, Tannehill has been the most sacked quarterback in the league and is the second-most hit quarterback, trailing just the Indianapolis Colts.
Where is Philbin working now? With those same Colts as the team's assistant head coach and...offensive line coach.
To be fair, Philbin seems to have been a good position coach and worked well as the offensive coordinator for the Packers, but was in over his head in his first head coaching job. The irony of Philbin becoming an offensive line coach after the misery that has been the Miami offensive line for the past four years cannot be ignored.
The good news is, if you are the team that allowed the most quarterback hits in a four-year span, hiring the fired coach of the team that allowed the second-most quarterback hits is technically a step up. Colts head coach Chuck Pagano discussed the hiring of Philbin on Saturday.
"I mean you just look at his resume and what he's done in this league," Pagano said, via Stampede Blue. "We talked about what a great resource he'd be, not only for me but everybody in this building. We can all learn from a Joe Philbin type guy, a guy that's been around, been a head coach, spent a lot of time coaching and working at his craft. He's got a ton of experience. There are a lot of things. He's a great teacher, he's a great person. He's developing these guys not only along with all our other guys but helping these guys. We're trying to give them tools to not only be the best football players that they can be, but give them the tools necessary so they can be great men off the field as well. He's a great role model. He's a great teacher. We got lucky we got him."
Philbin always seemed like a good guy, and someone who wanted to succeed, but just could not figure out how to make it happen. He wanted a finesse offense, so much so that he abandoned any sense of a running game nearly every week. He tried to install a zone blocking scheme, but did not have players that necessarily fit the scheme and allowed defenses to simply tee off on Tannehill. Hopefully, as a person, Philbin is able to step back, take on the role as an offensive line coach once again, and find success.
Dolphins fans, however, are going to instantly recognize the irony of Philbin being an offensive line coach again, and they are going to question how "lucky" the Colts really are.