There was a baffling strategic moment from the Miami Dolphins on Monday night. The Dolphins, with a quarterback whose calling card is ill-timed turnovers, decided to throw the ball from their own 20-yard line with 47 seconds left in the half.
You knew where this story was going before it even played out. Jay Cutler stared down his target, Carolina Panthers linebacker Luke Kuechly picked him off, and before the end of the half the Panthers scored a touchdown gifted to them by Dolphins coach Adam Gase. That turned the momentum of the game. It’s not like Gase didn’t know Cutler was capable of a terrible turnover. Instead of going into halftime trailing by only three points, Gase and Cutler handed the Panthers a 10-point lead before halftime, and that spiraled into a 45-21 loss. Gase must have forgot this was the same offense he termed “garbage” earlier this season.
The man in charge of that garbage offense? Yep, it’s Adam Gase.
Do we have much evidence that Gase is a good coach? He was supposed to be the young offensive mastermind turning around a franchise, but compare him and Sean McVay these days. McVay, the Los Angeles Rams coach who actually is turning around a franchise, has a good young quarterback to work with and Gase doesn’t. But when Ryan Tannehill got hurt, Gase stumped for Cutler. Cutler has been terrible, and the Dolphins’ consistently odd play-calling doesn’t help.
The Dolphins were clearly a fraud at 4-2, and they’ve been exposed their last three games They were blown out by the Baltimore Ravens, lost at home to the Oakland Raiders and then were blown out by the Panthers on Monday night.
Last season Gase lifted his team from an awful start to the playoffs, but that winning run never held up under much scrutiny. Aside from a good win to start that streak against the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Dolphins basically got a ton of close wins against bad teams and got blasted by the three good teams they played. It still seemed like a fine rookie season from Gase as long as the Dolphins made more strides this season. That hasn’t happened.
Miami was 4-2 just a few weeks ago, yet it already seems they’re playing out the string for the rest of the season. The Panthers set a franchise record with almost 550 yards of offense against a horrible Dolphins defense. Miami’s offense wasn’t good either, and the turnover at the end of the first half was baffling. It’s hard to see how the Dolphins fix everything that is going wrong.
Maybe the Dolphins turn it back around and make a run out of nowhere, because that’s what they did last season. But if the Dolphins are going to play the rest of the season like they have the past three weeks, there should be some serious questions this offseason if Miami has the right coach.
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