The Miami Dolphins will not know if Brian Flores is their long-term solution at head coach but he already has done far better than his predecessors.
When Brian Flores takes the team into the regular season this year, he has a shot at becoming the 3rd best coach in Miami Dolphins franchise history but is that really saying a lot considering those that came before him?
Don Shula still to this day embodies what everyone has to measure up to as a head coach for the Dolphins. His 257 regular-season wins stand as an untouchable monolith in Dolphins history. His 347 combined career wins with both Miami and Baltimore is that untouchable NFL monolith.
The Dolphins have had 13 head coaches in their history. George Wilson of course was the first. So where does Brian Flores currently rank? Well, he is 5th.
Cam Cameron naturally takes the bottom spot with his 1 win in 1 season. Todd Bowles won two games as an interim head coach while Jim Bates won three, and Dan Campbell won five as interim HC. George Wilson won 15 games as the first HC in Dolphins history and following him, Nick Saban rings in with a lowly 15 games as well.
For all the hype of Adam Gase’s hire, Gase managed just 23 wins in his three seasons. Joe Philbin on the other hand managed only one more victory despite coaching an entire season longer than Gase. Then we come to Flores.
Brian Flores has 25 wins in two seasons. That considering the history of coaches for the Dolphins is impressive. He is 17 games away from taking over the 2nd best coach in Dolphins history in terms of games won. That spot is currently held by Dave Wannstedt who won 42 games in Miami.
Flores isn’t going to go undefeated this year so winning 17 games isn’t going to happen. He should pass that next season if the team stays on track.
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This year, Flores should pass Tony Sparano for 4th. Sparano has 29 wins. The next target will be Jimmy Johnson who currently has 36 wins. 11 wins is a possibility for Miami and doing so would move Flores into a tie for the 3rd spot but if they win a playoff game as well, 3rd is all his.
Flores is so well-liked by his players that over 70 players showed up for voluntary workouts this week after previously saying they would not. Players want to play for him and he motivates them better than any coach since Shula.
Flores has built a culture that is far more than just words. He did by holding himself and his coaches accountable for the same standards. Whether he sticks around another 20 years or two years, he has a shot to leave his mark on Dolphins history.
To get to Shula, well, we can start talking about that 17 years from now. Consider that it would take Flores 13 years of 17 win seasons to get within reach.