Chris Grier is living the dream of most every 13-year-old kid:
“I get to be in charge of him,” Grier said last week.
By him, he means his dad, Bobby Grier, the longtime NFL talent evaluator who’s highly respected in personnel circles.
In recent months, the Dolphins quietly hired Bobby Grier as a consultant. He’ll report directly to his son Chris, the second-year Dolphins general manager.
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“It's been fun working with him,” Chris Grier said at the NFL Scouting Combine. “The last time we were together was in New England years ago, so it's been fun.”
The senior Grier was the Patriots’ vice president of player personnel in the 1990s, constructing the roster that reached the Super Bowl in 1996.
By then, his son was already on his staff. Chris Grier started out with New England in 1994 as an intern, then was later promoted to regional scout. He left the Patriots for the Dolphins in 2000, the same year his dad took a job with the Texans.
Bobby Grier retired from the full-time football life last spring after 16 years in Houston.
So what’s his role with Miami?
It doesn’t sound particularly defined — other than provide input when he sees fit.
“He’s a consultant; he’s retired,” Chris Grier said. “You know how it is, once he got here. Actually, my dad coached Adam Gase’s dad [Art] at Eastern Michigan for a year. They didn’t know that until Adam took this job and we were talking. But, yeah, he does some consulting work for us on the side.”
Dad doesn’t live in South Florida, but “bops in and out for some meetings and stuff,” Chris Grier said. “Nothing scheduled.”
Free agency begins this week, and perhaps we’ll soon get a sense of Bobby Grier’s impact. The Dolphins offseason plan has been set for weeks, with the team expected to aggressively address its many holes on defense, particularly at linebacker.
The legal tampering period opens Tuesday, and players whose contracts expire are free to sign with other teams on Thursday afternoon.
The Dolphins’ philosophy this year? They’re all about value.
Spending top dollar on the hottest free agents is “just not something we’re looking to do,” Gase said recently.
“We want to build through the draft and especially with Chris running the draft, our trust level in him, he’s an unbelievable evaluator of talent,” Gase said. “I think his staff does a great job. We feel like that’s the group we want to lean heavily on, that we can trust they’re going to know the right character, the right kind of guys. They’re going to find the right fits for our system.”
Gase added: “I think free agency sometimes is a crapshoot. We don’t know what you’re getting and all of a sudden you’ve got guys coming in that are bringing their ideas and things like that, and sometimes it’s easier just training guys the way you want them and how they’re supposed to think and how they’re supposed to do their job.”