Yesterday evening the news leaked that the Miami Dolphins would hire Joe Philbin to be their next head coach. This seems to be a pretty solid play by the Dolphins who have a fairly decent foundation and could use Philbin’s Green Bay ties to lure the soon-to-be free agent quarterback, Matt Flynn, to Miami.
The implications for the Buccaneers aren’t so great though as they have once again missed out on a coaching candidate. If you listen (and if you don’t you should) to our podcast, you caught Josh and I discussing Philbin’s candidacy in our most recent show. Unfortunately for Tampa Philbin, coupled with a good defensive coordinator, would have been a very good answer for the Buccaneers’ coaching quandary.
Philbin would have brought an excellent football pedigree, a winning model and potentially Tom Clement, the Green Bay QB coach, as a coordinator. That would have allowed the Buccaneers young group of receivers to grow in an offense that is conducive to their skill-sets and more importantly it would have helped Josh Freeman capitalize on his massive potential.
It’s really not worth getting further than that, it’s not going to happen. Once again, as the Buccaneers bide their time and wait around for candidates another viable option has come off the table. The Bucs still have options, but as more and more of the intriguing ones are hired, the likelihood the Buccaneers get a re-tread or an unprepared coordinator goes up.
Think about this for a second, if the Bucs wanted Mike Sherman he’d be the head coach. It’s not like he has a ton of other suitors, people aren’t breaking his door down to come back. If he were the guy he’d be in the driver’s seat already. Same goes with Childress.
Now in two or three weeks if one of those guys ends up answering questions at a podium in One Buc Place about this team’s future, what is that going to say?
To me it says they waited too long, they didn’t get their first pick. Probably not even their second or third.
There’s the possibility the Bucs are waiting until one of the four remaining playoff teams exits so they can take a look at one of those coordinators. A lot of people have mentioned Giants DC Perry Fewell. But to be honest I’m not sure any of the coordinators left in the playoffs are worth waiting for at this point. Even Fewell brings questions and as early as this same season was on the hot seat in New York for poor defensive showings.
The Bucs need to move, they need to be honest with themselves, narrow down the candidates and then pull the trigger. The longer they wait, the less the decision becomes their’s. Coaching hunts are only so subjective, it matters how philosophies mesh and ideas are expressed but it also matters whether a guy can flat out coach. That’s why there’s a finite pool of good candidates and whether you want to admit it or not, almost every franchise’s coaching list looks about the same up top.
So Tampa needs to find the guy they want right now out of the guys left available and move on it. Otherwise they’ll end up with Sherman or Childress in two weeks and a whole bunch of PR spin about how this was always going to be the guy.
Nobody wins like that.