The Miami Dolphins are reportedly in favor of Buffalo Bills offensive coordinator Brian Dabol as the team’s next head coach.
Dabol, who had a previous stint as an assistant at Miami and a second season working with Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa in college, would become the franchise’s 14th head coach—not counting the 11th interim coaches. New York Daily News reported Dabol as the leading candidate for the Dolphins on Wednesday night, linked the New York Giants to then-Dallas Cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, a former head coach with the Atlanta Falcons the Dolphins have also interviewed, and ex-Dolphins coach Brian Flores. .
The 46-year-old Dabol is one of the most popular names in this season’s cycle of coaching transitions. He was the first candidate to be requested for an interview by the Dolphins after parting ways with Flores.
Dabol will be the first-time head coach, and some in the Dolphins’ organization will still want to be hired with no previous head coaching experience, According to Pro Football Networkwhich also marked Dabol as the emerging candidate.
Dabol earned his reputation as the team’s offensive coordinator since 2018 through the work he did with the Bills’ offense and Buffalo quarterback Josh Allen. Under Dabol, the Bills had the No. 3 scoring offense, the No. 5 in the scoring offense, no. , 6 in escaping crime and no. 9 in passing offence. Allen has had back-to-back seasons of at least 4,400 passing yards and 36 touchdowns along with being an effective runner, and Daboll was the AP NFL Assistant Coach of the Year in 2020 when Allen took the next step.
The Giants are considered one of the competing teams for Dabol, after interviewing twice and hiring Bill Assistant General Manager Joe Schönen, a former Dolphins executive, for their general manager position. Buffalo native Dabol also has the Chicago Bears among interested teams.
Other teams still with vacancies after the Denver Broncos hired Green Bay Packers offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett on Thursday morning: the Giants, Bears, Minnesota Vikings, Las Vegas Raiders, Jacksonville Jaguars, Houston Texans and New Orleans Saints.
Miami has also interviewed Quinn, Bills defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier, San Francisco 49ers offensive coordinator Mike McDaniel, Arizona Cardinals defensive coordinator Vance Joseph, Cowboys offensive coordinator Kellyanne Moore and Los Angeles Rams back coach Thomas Brown.
Dabol was Tagovailoa’s offensive coordinator and quarterback coach for his new player in Alabama in 2017. That year, Tagovailoa was the backup of current Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hirts, but developed throughout the season to rely on a sub-in for the Hearts at halftime of the national championship game and eventually lead to a comeback victory against Georgia. .
Dabol also has a championship NFL pedigree. He was a New England Patriots assistant under coach Bill Belichick for five Super Bowl-winning seasons. He was the tight end coach for the Patriots from 2013 to 2016, wide receivers coach from 2002 to 2006 and defensive assistant in 2000 and 2001.
Dabol’s first stop in Miami came in 2011, the final year of coach Tony Sparano’s tenure as offensive coordinator. He was also the offensive coordinator for the Kansas City Chiefs in 2012 and the Cleveland Browns in 2009 and 2010. Between his first stint in New England and his first coordinating job in Cleveland, he coached the New York Jets quarterback in 2007 and 2008.
After the Dolphins moved with Flores, hiring Dabol would be a change to go with a coach with an offensive background who had a defensive background over 15 seasons in the Patriots organization in 2019. Adam Gase (2016–18), Joe Philbin (2012–15), Tony Sparano (2008–11) and Cam Cameron (2007) all became head coaches of the Dolphins after stints as offensive assistants. All of the above were also head coaches for the first time when they arrived in Miami, as would Dabol.
Flores was fired after three seasons in which he went 24–25. His firing on January 10 came as a surprise to NFL circles after the Dolphins completed a back-to-back winning season for the first time since 2003. Dolphins owner Steve Ross, while retaining general manager Chris Grier, cited Flores’ communication methods and lack of cooperation as reasons for the decision.
In his three seasons leading the Dolphins, Flores was 0–6 against the offenses of Biles and Dabol. He hasn’t found his next coaching destination yet, but has been interviewed by the Giants, Bears, and Texans.