It was announced on Sunday that Joe Philbin would be returning to the Dolphins as head coach in 2015. Of course, this meant a lot to Philbin as there had been many questions regarding his status moving forward, especially after losing to the New England Patriots and Baltimore Ravens and essentially being eliminated from the playoffs.
However, owner Stephen Ross said that he has a lot of faith in Philbin to keep on moving the team forward and to bring them to the next level. Philbin appreciates the trust and faith that Ross has in him and his coaches.
“Like I said, as I’ve said many times as I tell our staff, and I believe this, I believed this for 30 years that players deserve a coach that believes in them. That belief I think allows players to hopefully reach their potential. It’s important for a head coach of a NFL football team that the owner believes in him, what he is doing and the program he is instilling. It’s very important. If you don’t have that type of belief and faith from the owner, it’s not going to work. I know if players don’t believe in their coaches and coaches don’t believe in their players, you have no chance. It’s important.”
Prior to Sunday, Philbin said that he didn’t have time to think about his future with everything going on and with games to focus on each week.
“I’m very supportive of Steve. Steve has supported me. I’m delighted, but really when you are a football coach you are so consumed you have enough things going on to worry about your own situation. You are worried about the team and finishing strong, coaching these guys the right way and getting them to play up to their potential. Really it wasn’t a big deal.”
After the victory and after hearing the news from Ross, Philbin said he went home and had a Guinness beer to celebrate while also spending time with the family.
“I was able to (see) a couple of my children who are home that I don’t get to see all the time on the way home. It was kind of a long game. I don’t know, either I’m getting old or my knees were sore. But no, when I get a chance to be with my family that’s what I want to be doing.”
After letting everything settle in and knowing that he would be coming back, what were his feelings and emotions like?
“Mostly gratitude. It wasn’t relief. Certainly gratitude. Like I said yesterday and I said earlier, it’s important for me that the owner believes in what I’m doing, what I believe in and what I’m all about as a coach and what this program is doing and heading in the right direction. But again, I’ve been in this profession a long time, I wasn’t worried about my own personal future.”
Kevin Coyle, like Ross, agrees that Philbin is building something special. Of course, he may be a little biased since his job security depends on Philbin.
“I was thrilled for Coach (Philbin). I’ve stated to you guys from the very get-go that I think Coach Philbin has been building something special here. Obviously we wish it would have translated into some more wins here sooner than it has, but there is no doubt in my mind he has built a great foundation as has the entire staff here together. I think the future is bright, and I think the organization will see that as we move forward. I’m thrilled for coach and for the staff.”
We’ll see if Philbin take the team to the next level in 2015 and bring the team to the playoffs. If not, it’s clear that he would have had every chance to do so and that it would be time to move on to a new head coach. Let’s hope that this doesn’t come to this and Philbin can in fact continue to turn this team around.
This story was written by Matthew Cannata. Follow him on Twitter: @PhinManiacs