With the way the Miami Dolphins performed the final two weeks of the season someone had to take the fall. The scapegoat ended up being Mike Sherman. Sherman’s offense ranked 27th in the league, and the Dolphins’ offense only scored seven points in the final two games of the season when the playoffs were in their grasp. Stephen Ross, who had spent big in free agency to upgrade the Dolphins’ team, was not happy with the results.
Sherman had been with the Dolphins since 2012 when he was brought in with Joe Philbin after being fired from Texas A&M where he coached Ryan Tannehill. Sherman’s offense was based too much on what the defense was doing, and in today’s NFL of exploiting match-ups and making defenses adjust, Sherman’s style was holding the team back.
Not to mention the infamous “Go-Go” which is what Ryan Tannehill screamed every time the Dolphins ran the ball and the single “Go” when they would throw. This, along with the familiar route combinations, is why people called his offense predictable. While it is up to players to execute, it becomes easier for a defense to defend when they have a good idea of what is coming.
The firing of Sherman has to affect Joe Philbin. He got his first NFL job from Sherman and had been mentored by Sherman since 1979 when Sherman was Philbin’s coach and teacher. Philbin reportedly did not want to make any changes to the offensive coaching staff but realized his job was more important than his old friendship. Mike Munchak was fired for wanting to keep continuity with his coaching staff, and Philbin likely did not want to suffer the same fate.
Philbin’s job is reportedly safe, but feuds over philosophy and power between him and Jeff Ireland could ruffle some feathers. Mr. Ross wants to show the patience he has lacked in the past and not make any hasty decisions, so if any further moves come they will likely be a few days down the road. The biggest question in Davie right now is who will replace the man who orchestrated the league’s 27th ranked offense?