Why I love the Dolphins hiring Bill Lazor as their new offensive coordinator
No one can tell you for sure how much of Foles’ growth was due to Chip Kelly and how much was due to Bill Lazor. But, Lazor certainly played a role in helping Foles step in and throw 27 TDs and just 2 INTs. I like this guy. I like him a lot. One reason I like him is that Lazor’s offensive philosophy should mesh well with Joe Philbin’s because both believe in the principles of the west coast offense.
Another reason I like Lazor is that he has play-calling experience. he hasn’t called plays on the NFL level, but he did so for 3 years at the collegiate level. This is a very important aspect of the Offensive Coordinator’s role with the team. How many times did we criticize Mike Sherman for his stubbornness calling plays? I think Lazor will do a much better job (how could he be much worse?).
I also like Lazor because he has experience working with young QBs. He worked with them for 3 years in college and again with Foles in 2013. I’m excited to see what he can do with Ryan Tannehill. Tannehill is about to enter his 3rd season with the Dolphins, which will likely be a make or break year for him (and the coaching staff). We definitely saw some improvement in 2013, but we need to see him take the next step in 2014. I think Lazor can be a key part in helping him do that.
The final reason I love bringing in Lazor is that he has direct experience in Chip Kelly’s innovative offense. The Eagles offense ranked 2nd in the NFL in 2013, putting up more than 417 yards and 27.6 points per game. Meanwhile, the Dolphins averaged just over 312 yards and 19.8 points per game. Kelly has his own offensive philosophy, but I think Lazor can bring some of those concepts to the Dolphins. Additionally, Chip Kelly brought a new way of training to the Eagles, which allowed them to keep their players healthy this season. Maybe Lazor can help Joe Philbin by making some suggestions in that area as well.
As you can tell, I’m pumped about this addition. Lazor is young and motivated, which will help him relate and communicate with the players. I’m excited to see what type of offense he installs for the Dolphins. More importantly, I’m eager to see what types of players the Dolphins bring in this offseason, to fit the Philbin/Lazor scheme on offense. Now we just have to see who the person making those personnel decisions is going to be. The Dolphins GM search is still ongoing, but should become more clear within the next week or so.
[Update 1:00pm] According to Alex Marvez on Twitter, it appears the Dolphins assistant coaches (see: Jim Turner, OL Coach & Zach Taylor, QB Coach) will remain with the team through 2014. Apparently Joe Philbin requested that Lazor keep all of the offensive assistants. Not a fan of that move, Turner’s group woefully underperformed in 2013.