The Miami Dolphins will be searching for a new head coach following their regular-season finale against the New England Patriots on Sunday. Interim head coach Dan Campbell is 4-7 since taking over for Joe Philbin, which is not good enough.
Here are some pros and cons for the Dolphins to consider:
Pros: Kelly has prior head coaching experience at both the NFL and college levels, which should be very important to the Dolphins. The team’s prior three head coaches -- Philbin, Tony Sparano and Cam Cameron -- all failed in part because they were learning on the job. Kelly knows what to expect in the top post. Therefore, there is no learning curve. For all the criticism Kelly gets for his time in Philadelphia, his 26-21 record with one playoff berth in three years is respectable. Owner Stephen Ross also likes big names, as is evident from prior pursuits of Jim Harbaugh and Jeff Fisher. Kelly just became one of the biggest names in this offseason’s coaching market.
Cons: Kelly’s offense is similar to the one Miami has run the past two seasons, and both imploded this year. Former Dolphins offensive coordinator Bill Lazor learned under Kelly in Philadelphia and brought a similar scheme to South Florida in an effort to take quarterback Ryan Tannehill and Miami’s offense to the next level. The scheme was pretty much a disaster, and it will be a tough sell that Tannehill and Miami needs more of it in 2016 and beyond. Kelly also had issues relating to his players, which is a problem the Dolphins' locker room doesn’t need. The team already lacks direction and solid leadership. It is also unknown if Kelly wants to run the entire show with coaching and personnel at his next stop. But that would be a deal-breaker for the Dolphins, who likely will be searching for a new general manager after the season. Kelly left the Eagles in ruins this year trying to do both, and the Dolphins won’t follow that same path.
In all, Kelly is a big name with baggage, and the negatives outweigh the positives for Miami. There are better fits for the Dolphins that should be higher on their list. But when a coach of Kelly's cache suddenly comes on the market, he should not be completely ruled out by any team with an opening.