There has been a lot of chatter over the past few days about some of the things the Miami Dolphins have done in the public eye. This includes signing free agents, letting some go and talking about their future plans for player personnel.
One of the biggest things that has gotten overlooked though is the fact that head coach Joe Philbin said that the defensive schemes and packages heading into 2015 will be much more simplified. This is big because the complexity of the defense has stunted the growth of rookies and new players to the team. There have been veterans of the Dolphins who have openly complained about how complex the system is and how much thinking that is done on the field. There’s a reason why defensive rookies don’t play much and it has nothing to do with Philbin’s preference. The fact is that the defense is too difficult to learn in the first year, especially when you’re a rookie in the NFL.
Simplifying the defense was one of the directives from Philbin to coordinator Kevin Coyle heading into the 2015 season. Philbin had considered firing Coyle but said that he ultimately looked at the body of work over the past three years rather than the last six games of the season. While Philbin noted that the defensive slide was unacceptable, he said that they believe they are doing the right things to make sure it doesn’t happen again this season.
"We had a number of different discussions," Philbin told Andrew Abramson of the Palm Beach Post. "We went back and forth and I like our defensive staff. We have things we must do better. But at the end of the day we went in the direction that is the best thing for the team."
This is great news for the defense and one that should show immediate results. With a simplified scheme, the Dolphins are now in position to take a defensive rookie in the early rounds of the draft without worrying about whether or not they will grasp the system in their first year. In addition, it will be much easier for newly signed free agents to get acclimated to the playbook and make an impact right away.
This story was written by Matthew Cannata. Follow him on Twitter: @PhinManiacs