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Dolphins fire defensive coordinator Kevin Coyle

The Miami Dolphins today continued to purge their coaching staff as Kevin Coyle was fired after 68 games with the team.

Defensive back coach Lou Anarumo takes over as the new defensive coordinator. He was the defensive coordinator for the Merchant Marine Academy in 1992-94 and that is his only experience as a coordinator.

Jeff Burris has been promoted to assistant DB coach and will work with cornerbacks while assistant DB coach Blue Adams continues to work with safeties.

The Dolphins will continue to run a 4-3 defense and the terminology will remain the same. But there are supposed to be tweaks coming.

In Coyle's time as defensive coordinator the defense steadily regressed on multiple fronts, most importantly in giving up more points with each passing year. Before Coyle arrived, the Dolphins allowed an average of 19.6 points per game in 2011.

But Coyle was hired by former head coach Joe Philbin and converted the 3-4 defense into a 4-3 unit. And that unit allowed an average of 19.8 points per game in 2012, then 20.9 points per game in 2013, then 23.3 points per game in 2014 and 25.3 points per game through four games this year.

The consistent regression was only part of the issue with Coyle's tenure, however.

Last year whisper arose from players who were not happy with the coach's play-calling and approach. Former linebacker Phillip Wheeler, who struggled in Coyle's system, was among its most vocal critics.

The complaints became louder this season as players, requesting anonymity, sought out some members of the media and talked of disliking the read-and-react approach up front and the playing os some players out of position they were accustomed to playing.

There was even a meeting between Coyle and players last week to try to iron out the differences. But two players said nothing was changed significantly after the Buffalo Bills beat Miami 41-14. Although some meetings and other things were tweaked the Dolphins defense allowed 27 points and over 200 yards rushing in a loss to the New York Jets.

That was the last straw for Philbin who was fired Monday. Coyle survived that day but he was on notice because it was clear interim coach Dan Campbell would have say over whether Coyle stayed or went.

One player, meanwhile, told me that even with Campbell as the new head coach, he felt nothing was really going to change on defense if Coyle remained.

Some things are bound to change now. 

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