The Miami Dolphins and the Cincy Bengals introduced their new head coaches yesterday and the identities of those two gentlemen were of surprise to no one. Each one had to wait to take the job until after the Super Bowl game was over because Zac Taylor was the QB coach for the Rams in that game and Brian Flores was the defensive coordinator for the Pats in that game.
- Zac Taylor: You will have to consult with 23-And-Me to know if he is descended from President Zachary Taylor. [Aside: The only thing I remember about President Taylor was that his nickname was “Old Rough and Ready”.] the current-day Taylor fits the mold of “seeking the new Sean McVay. Taylor is young, energetic, ultra-positive and steely-eyed as is McVay. He worked for/with McVay. The only discernable difference is that Taylor does not use hair gel and is clean shaven. Is he the “next Sean McVay”? Talk to me in about 3 years…
- Brian Flores: He has been part of the Pats coaching staff since 2004 serving as a scout and various position coaches and then as defensive coordinator. The Dolphins must assume that some of the elements of “the Patriot way” have rubbed off on him. Flores has a 5-year contract with the Dolphins and that of itself should be a challenge. The last Dolphins’ coach to last 5 years was Don Shula and he hung it up in 1995.
The concept of the “NFL Coaching Tree” is widely accepted as something worthy of note. I am not sure why because if you believe that Bill Belichick is one of the Top 5 NFL coaches of all time (as most people would unless they are Patriots’ haters), then why has “his tree” borne such sour fruit on its progeny? Here is my off-the -top-of-the-head list of folks who are on the Belichick Tree; it is not a highly successful list:
- Romeo Crennel: He had two head coaching jobs with two bad teams. He lasted 5 full seasons (plus a bit of another one as an interim head coach). His overall record was 28-55.
- Eric Mangini: He too had two head coaching jobs with two bad teams. He too put in five full seasons as a head coach and his overall record was 33-47.
- Josh McDaniels: He was the head coach of the Broncos for a year and three-quarters. His record in Denver was 11-17.
- Bill O’Brien: He had a successful time at Penn State in the aftermath of the Jerry Sandusky mess and then took over the head coaching job for the Texans. In 5 full seasons there, his record is 42-38 with 3 playoff appearances.
- Matt Patricia: He too was the Pats’ defensive coordinator until he left at the end of last year to take over as head coach of the Lions. Granted, it is a small sample size, but this year’s Lions’ team went 6-10 after going 9-7 the year before Patricia arrived.
- Mike Vrabel: He never coached with Belichick, but he played for Belichick for 8 years and was a coach under Bill O’Brien for 3 years. Does that grant him status on this list? I think it should. This is another small sample size, but in his year at the helm for the Titans, Vrabel’s record is 9-7.
Moving on … CBSSports.com says this morning that MLB and the MLBPA are discussing rule changes. One would add the Designated Hitter to the National League; I do not like that change at all; I have not liked the DH concept from the day it was initiated in MLB. However, the other rule is something that I have “championed” for about the last 4 or 5 years. According to the report, the new rule would make every pitcher face a minimum of 3 hitters in a game. That would put an end to the often-seen situation where fans get to watch two pitchers warm up after consecutive hitters. I love this proposed rule change and wish it had been instituted several years ago.
The NY Post reported earlier this week that ESPN fired Adnan Virk and escorted him off the campus there. It was only a few months ago that Virk reportedly signed a 4-year contract extension at ESPN supposedly in the “seven-figure neighborhood”. According to the NY Post, this action is tied to some reporting by Awful Announcing about some programming decisions made by ESPN relative to their deal with MLB. [Aside: I must admit that I do not know anything about “Awful Announcing”; but with a name like that, I would surmise that it would not be best buddies with an entity such as ESPN.] You can read about this situation here; my hunch is that this matter will be dealt with in a legal action and there will be more reporting on it then.
Tom Brady was a guest on Good Morning America; there he told Michael Strahan something about being identified as “The GOAT”:
“I don’t even like it. It makes me cringe.”
I have to take Brady at his word here because I have no experience to judge his reaction against. No one has ever considered calling me the greatest of all time at anything – – except perhaps for my long-suffering wife who says that I am the world’s only 75-year old 14-year old.
Finally, here is a tidbit of Super Bowl halftime show analysis from Brad Rock in the Deseret News:
“A USA Today story called Maroon 5’s halftime show ‘a white-bread performance from one of America’s most generic groups.’
“Which nicely matched the Patriots’ white-bread win in one of America’s most generic Super Bowl games.”
But don’t get me wrong, I love sports………