Reports: Dolphins fire Adam Gase after three seasons

When the Miami Dolphins hired Adam Gase as head coach in 2016, he was supposed to be the NFL’s newest wunderkind, the young hotshot offensive mind who was finally going to return the franchise to the postseason on a regular basis, challenge the AFC East-dominating New England Patriots, and groom Ryan Tannehill into a franchise quarterback.

Three seasons later, having not really accomplished any of those things, Miami is looking for another head coach.

Via multiple reports, Gase was fired Monday after a 7-9 record in 2018, and 23-25 overall record with one wild-card appearance in the playoffs.

Not enough success for Adam Gase

Miami missed the playoffs for the second straight year, despite starting the season 3-0. After that hot start they were a model of mediocrity, essentially losing two games for each one they won.

And it was generally feast or famine: Heading into the Week 17 finale, none of the Dolphins’ wins were by double digits. Their average margin of victory was 5.4 points and their average margin in losses was 15.7 points.

Last year saw a similar collapse: Miami started 4-2, then lost eight of their final 10 games to finish 6-10.

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NFL coaches fired after 2018 regular season
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NFL coaches fired after 2018 regular season

Todd Bowles, New York Jets

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Dirk Koetter, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

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Vance Joseph, Denver Broncos

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Marvin Lewis, Cincinnati Bengals

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Adam Gase, Miami Dolphins

(Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)

Steve Wilks, Arizona Cardinals

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Ryan Tannehill’s health a factor?

One of Gase’s goals, in addition to winning, was to groom Tannehill, the Dolphins’ first-round pick in 2012. Tannehill wasn’t always available. He only played in 24 of the 48 games during the coach’s tenure.

Tannehill was injured in the 13th game of the 2016 season, suffering ACL and MCL injuries, and missed the final games of the regular season and Miami’s wild-card round loss.

Tannehill’s injury was diagnosed as a sprained ACL and not a tear, and he opted not to have surgery at the time. Instead, he chose a course of rest and rehabilitation. But in training camp before the 2017 season, he re-injured the ligament and underwent season-ending surgery. Miami signed Jay Cutler, whom Gase had worked with in Chicago, to be the starter for the year.

This season, Tannehill suffered an injury to his throwing shoulder in the middle of the season, missing five games.

Dolphins jumped at the chance

The Dolphins pulled the trigger on hiring Gase when they feared they might lose him to the Philadelphia Eagles. The Eagles wound up hiring Doug Pederson instead and won a Super Bowl last season.

Just 37 years old at the time of his hiring, Gase had spent the previous three years as an offensive coordinator. He rose to prominence with the Denver Broncos in 2013 as the team and Peyton Manning set NFL records. Then Gase helped Cutler to one of his best seasons with the Chicago Bears in 2015.

Not only did the Dolphins make Gase the league’s youngest head coach at the time, they also gave him control of the 53-man roster. General manager Chris Grier and vice president of football operations Mike Tannenbaum handled scouting and player acquisition, but Gase was given final say over who stayed during the season.

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