The 2018 NFL playoff picture is shaping up, but it’s also getting clear which teams will miss the postseason. The coaching carousel will begin soon after Week 10’s fallout and we’re going to break it down.
While some organizations and fan bases are gearing up for a playoff push, it’s now becoming clear which franchises are starting to focus on the off-season. Only one Wild Card spot in the AFC looks attainable, and the NFC is just a little more open than that.
At least 11 teams can be crossed off as serious playoff contenders at this point. Due to that, there’s bound to be head coaching changes across the league. Ownership grows weary of losing seasons quickly, and hope to strike it rich with a home-run hire.
The Cleveland Browns have already axed Hue Jackson, but it appears others may not be far behind. We’re going to look at eight situations where change could occur, in order of least likely to most likely.
It’s difficult to identify the best candidates to replace current coaches, but we’ll try to identify some potential replacements anyways.
8. Adam Gase, Miami Dolphins
The least likely coach of this bunch is Adam Gase of the Miami Dolphins. At 5-5, the Dolphins are still in the AFC Wild Card race. But they’ve dropped five of their last seven thanks to Ryan Tannehill’s injuries leading to incompetent quarterback play for much of that stretch.
This is a team in a downward spiral due to the offensive ineptitude. Despite being an offensive coach, Gase has continued to create a lacking first-quarter offense regardless of the quarterback, and their weekly identity changes wildly. The difference between he and other recent offensive hires like Sean McVay, Doug Pederson, and Frank Reich is considerable.
Still, the Dolphins have a young, mediocre roster and limited quarterback situation. It’s hard to pin everything on Gase. The Dolphins didn’t know Tannehill’s body would completely break down, and they haven’t had a chance to add a clear upgrade without trading up.
Dolphins owner Stephen Ross has been patient and loyal in the past, making it more likely he continues to let Gase build this team. I think that’s the right call, and sources I’ve talked to echo the sentiment that ownership understands they’re attempting a fast-rebuild.
Making a move for Teddy Bridgewater or Jacoby Brissett and drafting a Day 2 quarterback may be in the fold this off-season. It’s a tough market to need a quarterback in this draft class, but Miami needs to do something.
Watch for Gase to get one more year before ownership really starts applying pressure.