Out with Chad O’Shea and in with Chan Gailey as the Miami Dolphins offensive coordinator.
Immediately following the 2019 season, O’Shea was fired and was replaced by Gailey. It was recently reported that O’Shea’s derived New England offense was overly complex.
The Dolphins had to lean on Ryan Fitzpatrick to guide the team offensively, which might also explain why Josh Rosen’s starting stint was so short. It might also be why things started to click once Fitzpatrick took back over the starting job.
The league’s trend has been to find the next great offensive mind. But these Miami Dolphins are dead set on doing things their way. Miami believes that a 68-year-old coach whose NFL career goes back to 1984 and also has been out of the league since 2017 is the man that will get this offense firing on all cylinders.
Based on past performance and Gailey’s philosophy, here’s what we could expect from the Dolphins offense in 2020:
It’s widely known that Gailey’s preference is the run game. Looking back at one of his most recent successful coaching campaigns in 2015, Gailey deployed a 4 wideout formation more than 50% of the snaps. His offense almost always had a minimum of three wide receivers on the field.
Here’s what Fitzpatrick had to say about Gailey’s offense in 2015 when he was playing for the New York Jets:
The deceptive part about these numbers is the expectation of the passing game. However, it’s the running game that will get a big boost.
To illustrate this let’s look at Ryan Fitzpatrick by the numbers in 2015 with Gailey versus 2019:
Fitzpatrick threw for 3,905 yards, with a 6.9 yard per attempt average in 2015. In 2019 with 1.5 fewer games, Fitzpatrick’s numbers were 3,529 yards with a 7.0 year per attempt average. As you can see not much of a difference.
The spread offense softens the defense and opens holes for the running game. As a team, the Dolphins only rushed for 1,156 yards in 2019. Using the same offensive years 2015 and 2019 as comparisons, Gailey’s offense had one running back (Chris Ivory) rush for 1,070 by himself.
Interesting fact: Ryan Fitzpatrick rushed for more yards on just one more attempt in 2015 than he did while leading the Dolphins in rushing in 2019
Miami’s running game will see growth without compromising the passing game. Jordan Howard, Matt Breida, and the other Dolphins running backs will bring more balance and help improve the time of possession.
The Dolphins appear to have the right personnel to make this offense click too. The 2015 Jets under Gailey had two receivers go for over 1,000 yards with Brandon Marshall and Eric Decker.
Miami is equipped with DeVante Parker and Preston Williams who have the potential of matching that production. When considering Jakeem Grant, Albert Wilson, and Mike Gesicki, the Dolphins have a nice mix of size and speed that should give opposing coverages headaches. Overall, the offense will be more efficient, converting more drives into touchdowns.
The Dolphins did not hesitate when bringing in Gailey to run the offense. Regardless of who is under center for the Dolphins in 2020, they fully expect to be much improved to the 2019 version.