Dan Henning is by all accounts doing a fine job as the Miami Dolphins offensive coordinator. After initially delaying a decision to accept the job in Miami and the Dolphins looking at other candidates, the hiring of Henning has paid tremendous dividends.
"He has balls of steel," Ricky Williams recently said of Henning and his play-calling.
"I didn't know Ricky was that observant," Henning kidded today.
But as the Dolphins have found a solid play-caller and proven championship offensive coordinator the question remains can they keep him? Henning is 66 years old and when I asked today how often he ponders his future and whether he wants to continue working, he admitted it is often on his mind.
"A lot," Henning said. "That happens a lot. I've been retired twice. And when I came down here I didn't know [coach] Tony [Sparano]. I knew Bill [Parcells]. So Tony and I had to feel one another out. I had to make sure he was interested and I had to make sure I was interested. And we went through a little bit of a dance there and the object was for us to get to know one another. I wanted to know what it was going to be like and I wanted him to know what I was going to be like so he would be comfortable with me.
"So if I do this it has to be under the conditions I'm doing it now. And right now it's a comfortable situation. I believe we got people that can get us players. If we don't have people that can get us players I have to go retire again. And I think Bill and [general manager] Jeff [Ireland] are doing a great job at that. And we have a head coach that can control the players and has a passion for wanting to win and knows how to organize and, in my mind, has done an excellent job of motivating the team. That allows me to do my job with some kind of a comfort zone -- although Tony would say he doesn't want anyone to feel comfortable."
That's great but it didn't sound like a solid commitment to me. So I asked if he could say he wants to be around a while longer?
"Tomorrow," Henning answered. "I'd like to still be here tomorrow. That would be nice."
Hmmmm. I can not tell you Henning is going to be one and done with the Dolphins. But his coaching history is one of a nomad. Rarely has he stayed places beyond two or three years.
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