Miami Dolphins

Joe Philbin noncommittal on Kevin Coyle, rest of Dolphins staff

Future uncertain: Defensive coordinator Kevin Coyle will have his body of work examined during the offseason before a decision is made on his job.
Future uncertain: Defensive coordinator Kevin Coyle will have his body of work examined during the offseason before a decision is made on his job. Miami Herald Staff

Coach Joe Philbin on Monday was noncommittal about whether Kevin Coyle would return as defensive coordinator after watching his team allow 28, 41, 35 and 37 points in the final four games of the season.

“I need obviously some time to think about some things,” Philbin said when asked about Coyle specifically and the staff overall. “The season just ended, but I haven’t made any decisions about any coaches for 2015, none of them.”

When several players were asked over the past two days whether Coyle was to blame, none absolved him of responsibility. Instead, multiple players said it was a combination of factors.

“Put it on everything,” Randy Starks said. “It was miscommunication, different things. We weren’t on the same page [late in the season]. It fell apart at the end.”

Starks said the defense is “not close to where it needs to be. If we were close, we would be in the playoffs.”

Asked how much of the problems fall on Coyle, Philbin said: “It’s on everybody. … We absolutely have to do better.”

Defensively, the Dolphins finished 20th in points allowed per game (23.3), 12th in total yards allowed, 24th in rushing yards relinquished, sixth in passing yards allowed, 13th in sacks per pass play and 29th in third-down defense.


▪ The Dolphins will pick 14th in the first round of the NFL Draft, one spot ahead of San Francisco, the only other team that finished 8-8.

▪ Mike Wallace isn’t the only Dolphins receiver who disappointed coaches in the final weeks. Rishard Matthews said he was deactivated against Minnesota for disciplinary reasons. He wouldn’t elaborate but said “it wasn’t unfair.”

Matthews said he wasn’t given a reason for why he wasn’t active Sunday against the Jets.

▪ The Dolphins’ 2015 home schedule: New England, Buffalo, Houston, Indianapolis, Dallas, Giants, Baltimore and the Jets in London.

The road schedule: New England, Buffalo, the Jets, Jacksonville, Tennessee, Philadelphia, Washington and San Diego.

▪ Philbin said he told the team Monday: “Going 8-8 again, obviously I failed my obligation of responsibility I made to [owner Stephen] Ross. I didn’t do well enough coaching this football team to get them better. We have to find ways to improve and do that quickly.”

▪ Philbin conceded the shift of Koa Misi to middle linebacker did not go “as well as I would have liked. For whatever reason, the injury bug seemed to grab him a couple of times this year. I still believe in him. I love the way he plays. He’s one of our more physical, toughest guys.”

▪ Dolphins reserve linebacker Chris McCain caused a stir on social media after Sunday’s game with tweets that were critical of fans who left the Jets game before it ended.

“Seen thousands of thousands of fans walk out and turn their backs on us,” McCain said on Twitter. “You know who you are and I personally have 0 respect for those [people]. I will never walk off the field, no matter what. #Disgrace …

“If you haven’t played high school or any other level than high school, keep your comments to yourself. LOL. You definitely know nun.”

McCain later tweeted that “I’m not calling out any fans. Love you all.”

▪ Quarterback Ryan Tannehill finished 14th in passer rating at 92.8, directly ahead of Eli Manning, Joe Flacco and Jay Cutler and also ahead of Colin Kaepernick, Matthew Stafford, Andy Dalton and Cam Newton, among others.

▪ Philbin, asked if the team is going in the right direction: “I think we were a better football team this year. It doesn’t feel that way this minute. I do think we were better until [Sunday].”

▪ Cornerback Will Davis, off knee surgery, said he expects to be ready for training camp but said it’s “iffy” if he will be healthy enough for the offseason program.

Cornerback Jamar Taylor might need surgery on his right shoulder, which was in a sling.

He said he was placed on injured reserve last week because the shoulder “was killing me.”

▪ Kicker Caleb Sturgis, who finished 28th in the league in field-goal accuracy (78.4 percent, 29 for 37) said he expects the Dolphins to try to find competition for him.

“I need to improve a lot,” he said.

Sturgis was 6 for 10 on field goals between 40 and 49 yards and 3 for 6 on field goals of 50 yards or more.

▪ Dion Jordan said being able to play “a little” bit of linebacker Sunday “felt good” but said he wasn’t told what position he will play next season.

“At this moment, I’m a defensive end,” he said.

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