Adam Gase, 37, is the new head coach of the Miami Dolphins and the youngest head coach in the league.
The team picked Gase Friday evening after the last of seven interviews was complete, and immediately began negotiations which carried into Saturday morning and early afternoon. And now Gase has agreed to a five-year deal. A 3 p.m. introductory press conference is scheduled.
“We did exhaustive research on all of the candidates ahead of time and conducted thorough and detailed interviews with each person,” Dolphins Owner and Managing General Partner Stephen Ross said. “In the end, I was convinced and the search committee was unanimous Adam was the right leader for our football team who best met all of our priorities. He has high energy, is competitive and driven to win with a mindset of teaching and developing players. ”
So what do the Dolphins get?
Well, they get a lot of questions but that comes later. Gase was among the hottest, if not the hottest coach candidate on the circuit this hiring cycle. He interviewed in Cleveland, Philadelphia and with the New York Giants. Come to think of it, he was very well regarded during the 2015 hiring cycle, with reports suggesting he turned down the San Francisco 49ers job because he didn't want to have certain assistants hoisted onto his staff that he didn't pick.
So that suggests Gase is his own man. That's good because he's going to have to be his own man every day in front of 53 of the world's best athletes. And given his youth and modest credentials, that should be interesting. The Dolphins, by owner Stephen Ross's own admission, need a culture change.
Gase is thus charged with implementing that change.
But here's the most important thing you have to know: Adam Gase is with the Miami Dolphins to become a coach, friend, mentor, and guru to quarterback Ryan Tannehill. If managing as football CEO is Job One, managing the QB will be close behind.
That's because as Tannehill goes, so will the Dolphins fortunes. And the fortunes of the people who picked and paid Tannehill $96 million.
So Gase must fix Ryan Tannehill. He must turn a former college receiver into a quarterback. Many NFL teams have done that the other way around -- turning college quarterbacks to wide receivers. None I can think of have done it the other way around. Tannehill would be the first.
And the Dolphins are confident Gase can do that otherwise he wouldn't be here.
Gase, something of a quarterback whisperer, is going to make sure Tannehill is comfortable. Gase's offense culls material from various schemes and philosophies but depends heavily on Mike Martz concepts. Mike Martz, the former longtime NFL coordinator and St. Louis Rams head coach, liked to attack downfield with his passing game.
Interestingly, Gase tries to walk the line between attacking downfield and protecting the QB.
Those two are often exclusive because it takes time to throw downfield and that often exposes the QB to being hit a lot. Tannehill has also had well chronicled issues with his deep ball accuracy. So we'll see.
Gase comes with the high public recommendation from the likes of Peyton Manning and John Elway, whom he worked with and for with the Denver Broncos. Manning has called Gase "the smartest man in the room," and not in a disparaging way. Manning has said he enjoyed his time working with Gase. And that time led to a Super Bowl appearance in February 2014.
And Gase was considered for the vacant Broncos head coaching job when Elway fired John Fox in early 2015.
That's good stuff.
But there's also this:
Manning has also shared that the offense the Broncos ran when Gase was there was primarily his offense. Manning often checked to plays of his choosing at the line of scrimmage so Gase wasn't necessarily calling all the plays. And Elway interviewed Gase, but hired the more experienced and familiar (to Elway) Gary Kubiak.
So they loved Gase. But they didn't looooove him.
Reactions are mixed with this hiring. Many Dolphins fans are not impressed. Many within the NFL community tell me the Dolphins have hit a home run.
We'll know soon enough which is right.
I reported days ago that Gase would want Cincinnati defensive backs coach Vance Joseph as his defensive coordinator. That is, indeed, the way this could go unless Joseph gets promoted in Cincinnati, goes with Hue Jackson wherever he might be hired, or is hired as a head coach. Joseph has never been a coordinator before.