The first work week of interviews for the Miami Dolphins head coaching job is just about complete. The team has interviewed six candidates, is currently interviewing a seventh in Doug Marrone, and is scheduled to add an eighth on Sunday when Hue Jackson is interviewed in Cincinnati.
And as I look around, I don't see problems.
I don't see pratfalls.
I don't see embarrassment.
Is this a Dolphins search?
You'll recall the Dolphins general manager search of 2014 had its, shall we say, issues. The Dolphins head coach search of 2012 did as well. Guys turning down the job. Guys turning down interviews. Guys accepting first interviews and then turning down second interviews, by implication saying that once they got to know the Dolphins brass they didn't want anything more to do with them. There was even a story of the owner forgetting a candidate's name.
But this search so far has gone without a reported hitch. It's been smooth from my view -- which admittedly is not on the inside, but neither were those others which I covered.
This is good so far. Very good.
And I think I can go further: When you look at the list of candidates the Dolphins have interviewed and compare it to the list of candidates other teams are working off of, I like Miami's approach much more.
Consider that only the Dolphins have so far interviewed former Atlanta head coach Mike Smith. Only the Dolphins have so far interviewed two-time Super Bowl winning coach Mike Shanahan. That speaks to a willingness to go to places and turn over rocks other teams haven't.
The Dolphins are one of the few teams talking to Anthony Lynn, the Buffalo running back coach, again showing a willingness to do what is unconventional.
The Dolphins have also interviewed many of the so-called top candidates that are making the rounds everywhere else. They talked to Chicago offensive coordinator Adam Gase, who has interviewed with a handful of teams. They're talking to Marrone, who also is interviewing with a handful of teams. They interviewed with Detroit defensive coordinator Teryl Austin, who, again, is interviewing with a handful of teams.
And even in interviewing their former interim coach Dan Campbell, the Dolphins have done the right thing. The team promised Campbell he'd get a shot at the prize when he accepted the interim post in October. It might have been easy to back away from that after Campbell went an unimpressive 5-7 as the interim. But no, the team stayed true to its promise and Friday morning gave Campbell his shot.
Obviously, this is only the first stage of this interview process. And time will give us a chance to learn more about how the Dolphins conducted their business behind closed doors. Trust me on this.
But unless guys were falling asleep in there or being unprofessional in some unforeseen way, I don't see anything that will cause us to view this search with a sideways glance.
One thing: The team did want to interview both New England coordinators, Josh McDaniels and Matt Patricia, per national reports -- which I have not been able to verify. Those have not happened as of this writing. Is that the Dolphins getting snubbed? No, it isn't because those two haven't interviewed anywhere else so far. The team also wants to interview Tampa Bay offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter but the fact it hasn't happened yet also doesn't raise flags because Koetter is on several interview lists and hasn't done anything elsewhere yet.
Finally, the cynics out there are going to scoff at this, but I think it is only fair to point out that Mike Tannenbaum is running this search. And it has a different look and feel than any other search the Dolphins have conducted recently. The difference?
It hasn't made me cringe yet.
Thank you, God!