With the Miami Dolphins reportedly set to hire Vic Fangio – one of the NFL’s most highly respected defensive minds – for their vacant defensive coordinator position, head coach Mike McDaniel has already done something that former Dolphins’ head coach Brian Flores couldn’t do.
McDaniel has brought in someone who can be a “head coach” on the opposite side of the ball from his own area of expertise.
During his tenure in Miami, Brian Flores — a defensive minded coach — had four offensive coordinators over a three year period, including co-coordinators George Godsey and Eric Studesville in his final year as Dolphins’ head coach. His most successful offensive coordinator was Chan Gailey who was with Miami during the 2020 season – a season in which the Dolphins scored 404 points (their most points scored since 1986, yet good for just the 15th most points scored in the league that season). However, Gailey would be replaced after just one year on the job.
Brian Flores’ downfall was his inability to cultivate and nurture relationships. He was unable to find – and keep – a quality coach to manage the offensive side of the ball while he handled the defense and that surely contributed to him being let go as head coach of the Dolphins after the 2021 season.
However, by all accounts, Mike McDaniel’s relationship building skills seem to be light years ahead of those of his predecessor. With the Dolphins landing their preferred defensive coordinator target in Vic Fangio, that idea has only gotten stronger.
McDaniel will hand the keys to the defense over to Fangio while he focuses all of his attention on maximizing the talents of an offense that possesses extremely gifted skill-sets like those of All-Pro receiver Tyreek Hill, Jaylen Waddle and Tua Tagovailoa – a quarterback who was on an MVP pace at the midway point of the 2022 season.
Clearly the Dolphins’ defense will be in capable hands, as Fangio has captained some of the most feared defenses in the league over the past 36 years since he first became a coach in the National Football League.
Additionally, as a former head coach himself, Vic Fangio can be a resource for Mike McDaniel to lean on as he continues to learn and grow on the job during his second season as the top guy in Miami.
All of this is possible because McDaniel is what Brian Flores seemingly could never be; someone who cares about building and fostering positive relationships with those around him. Time will tell how this move plays out, but it sure feels like the Dolphins are continuing to head in the right direction under their inspiring leader, Mike McDaniel.
How do you feel about the hiring of Vic Fangio as the new defensive coordinator in Miami? Do you think that this move will propel the Dolphins to new heights in 2023? Which players do you think benefit the most from the addition of Fangio to Miami’s staff? Let me know in the comments below or on Twitter at @MBrave13. Fins up!