Dolphins owner Stephen Ross thinks he has found a coach to provide long-term stability, but he isn’t going to give him long to prove it.
According to Jeff Ostrowski of the Palm Beach Post, Ross told the Palm Beach Civic Association Monday that he thinks new coach Adam Gase has generational qualities.
“Instead of getting a retread that really hasn’t had a great track record as head coach, I was looking for somebody that really could be the next, if you will, Bill Belichick, Bill Parcells, you know, really great head coach, and I think we got one,” Ross said.
Of course, he also established a timeline for that to kick in.
“After three years, if we haven’t made the playoffs, we’re looking for a new coach,” Ross said. “That’s just the way it is. The fans want it.”
Ross’s problem, which he seems to be the last to realize, is that it doesn’t always happen that quickly.
Belichick was 20-28 in his first three years in Cleveland, and didn’t make the playoffs. For which Ross would have fired him.
Parcells was 22-25-1 in his first three years, but made the playoffs in two of them, so he’d ostensibly have earned some trust from Ross.
But Ross insisted his method would work.
“It’s a lot easier to succeed in business than it is to create a winning football team,” Ross said. “I’m going to get it right yet.”
Or, maybe he won’t. Gase better hurry, because the clock is already ticking.
UPDATE 2/19, 11:50 A.M. ET: The first version of the Palm Beach Post story left out a bit of context on the Ross quote, which makes him look less reactionary. Upon being asked about hiring a 37-year-old head coach, Ross spoke of rapid turnover on a league-wide basis. “Every year, there’s anywhere from six to eight coaches,” he said. “It’s the most objective thing in the world – everybody looks at their won-loss records. There’s no other excuses. So, every team, after three years, if we haven’t made the playoffs, we’re looking for a head coach. That’s just the way it is. The fans want it.” Couched that way, it’s less like putting Gase on the clock and more a reality that he’s in a high-turnover business. But Ross has been quick on the trigger before, which helps further the perception that coaches around the league better produce in a hurry.