A 41-13 blowout loss to the New England Patriots in Week 15 could be the nail in the coffin for the Miami Dolphins' playoff hopes. The same could hold true for head coach Joe Philbin, who is likely to be fired at the conclusion of the 2014 season, according to Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald.
The loss to the Patriots eliminated the Dolphins from AFC East contention and essentially eliminated the team from competing for a Wild Card berth as well. Even at 7-7, and a chance to secure the first winning season for the Dolphins since 2008, that likely won't be enough to save Philbin.
... 9-7 is a disappointment for these Dolphins because they just had huge games against Baltimore at home and New England on this big stage and laid an egg in both games on consecutive weeks with playoff implications hanging in the balance.
So after two gigantic failures in important, meaningful games, everyone is supposed to be thrilled and coach Joe Philbin gets a pat on the back for winning two meaningless games to finish the year?
Hard to fathom.
Dolphins' owner Stephen Ross could also be more prone to the dismissal of Philbin due to the influences of Dan Marino and Mike Tannenbaum. The Hall of Fame quarterback and former New York Jets' general manager were seen talking with Ross after the team's loss Sunday and Salguero, who wrote that Philbin's "fate seems sealed," said the team's future was at the center of the conversation.
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Tannenbaum, who serves as a consultant for the team, is also an agent for Relativity Sports, who represents several coaches, including Seattle Seahawks' defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, Atlanta Falcons' offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter and Cincinnati Bengals' offensive coordinator Hue Jackson.
Marino is a special advisor to Ross, who attends practices, sits in on meetings and talks to players. That could also be bad news for Philbin after a report from NFL.com's Ian Rapoport indicated that players have been frustrated with Philbin's "lack of emotion," among other concerns:
"Let me give one quick nugget about this, something that really rankled the players. Philbin had them attend leadership classes, something that kept them late at the facility. They weren't sure why, they didn't really understand it."
Philbin joined the Dolphins in 2012 after five seasons as the offensive coordinator of the Green Bay Packers. In three seasons with the Dolphins, Philbin has compiled a 22-24 record.