For several long, excruciating seasons, the Miami Dolphins have filled their fans with false hope.
In 2005, Miami landed Nick Saban, the greatest “college” head coach of all time. Surely, he could be responsible for bringing the Dolphins back to the promise land. Nope. Saban jettisoned for Alabama, leaving us with Cam Cameron and Cleo Lemon to help turn things around. Cameron drafted Ted Ginn and his family. He was fired after a 1-15 season. Then, when all else failed, Huizenga let a fat Tuna wash up on sea. Bill Parcells, alongside Jeff Ireland and Tony Sparano, brought Miami their first playoff appearance in nearly a decade. After three seasons of mediocrity, the Dolphins welcomed the epitome of mediocrity to South Beach. His name is Joe Philbin.
Throughout Philbin’s tenure, the Dolphins played much like their former head coach. The team would look lifeless on Sundays, with little-to-no energy. It made fans and players alike “queasy” as Joe would say. Finally, after fifty-two games, Stephen Ross relieved Philbin of his head coaching duties, paving the way for an inexperienced Dan Campbell. Campbell wasn’t quite ready to be a head coach in the NFL, forcing the Dolphins to set out on a long, tedious search for the franchise’s twelfth head coach. When the dust settled, the Dolphins found themselves with a 38-year-old offensive mastermind.
His name is Adam Gase.
Adam Gase is the anti-Joe Philbin
Adam Gase is the complete opposite of Joe Philbin. Never, will the word “queasy” show up on a post-game press conference. Never will he be more worried about picking up trash, than X’s and O’s. Unlike Philbin, Gase is a proven offensive coordinator, who is responsible for getting the most out of his players, no matter where he goes. As Quarterback’s coach in Denver, Gase helped Tim Tebow lead the Broncos to a playoff victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers. Tebow Mania would ensue and coach Gase was largely responsible for the improbable win.
One of the greatest quarterbacks of all-time, Peyton Manning had nothing but great things to say about his former coach. Manning had the best season of his career alongside Gase, throwing for 5,477 yards, 55 touchdowns and 10 interceptions. When asked about coach Gase, Manning had this to say;
"I'm very happy for Adam," Manning said, via 9News. "Adam had a great impact on me during our years together here in Denver as my quarterbacks coach and then as offensive coordinator. He's an extremely hard worker — a grinder. He's extremely bright on all things football, an excellent communicator and always eager to learn more. He asks a lot of questions and writes everything down. I've always been impressed with his work ethic and his eagerness to learn more.
The Dolphins spent much of the offseason adding pieces to Adam Gase’s offense. After drafting first-round pick Laremy Tunsil, Ryan Tannehill should have more time to stand in the pocket. The receiving core is one of the youngest, and most talented in the league. Newly acquired running back Arian Foster has proven he can be among the league’s best running backs. Ajayi and Drake will also play a significant role in the offense, giving coach Gase an added arsenal of weapons.
However, what the entire Adam Gase Era will come down to, is whether or not he is able to turn Ryan Tannehill into an “elite” NFL quarterback. Tannehill has shown flashes throughout his four-year career, but not enough to warrant Top-10 status. It is now up to Gase to limit his mental errors, and have him playing the best football of his career. No more excuses for Tannehill, 2016 is the year he becomes one of the league’s top quarterbacks.
Coach Gase Mic’d up
Time will tell if Adam Gase is the real deal. His actions on and off the field provide fans with legitimate hope, something fans haven’t experienced since Don Shula himself. Though it will be hard for the Dolphins to dig their way out of the bottom of the AFC East, they now have one of the NFL’s best offensive minds to help them do so.
The sky is the limit, for Adam Gase and the Miami Dolphins. #InGaseWeTrust