Ja’Wuan James: Dolphins never had offensive identity in 2018

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The Dolphins fired head coach Adam Gase at the end of the 2018 season and right tackle Ja'Wuan James thinks that increases the chances that he’ll be back with the team in 2019.

James is set for free agency and felt he would probably be heading elsewhere if the Dolphins kept the same staff in place. Miami hasn’t officially hired Gase’s replacement as they’re waiting on Patriots linebackers coach Brian Flores, so it will be some time before James knows what approach the team is going to take on the offensive line.

Whatever approach they take, James thinks it would be wise for the team to stick to it in a way they didn’t during Gase’s final season.

“All year, we never had an offensive identity,” James said, via ESPN.com. “When things go really wrong, you don’t know what to go to if you don’t have any identity. You just end up trying random stuff.”

A significant piece of the team’s offensive identity will be the identity of the quarterback. There were reports about a desire to move on from Ryan Tannehill before the coaching change and the lack of ties to the 2012 first-round pick probably doesn’t alter that picture too much.

12 responses to “Ja’Wuan James: Dolphins never had offensive identity in 2018

  1. When half of your starting OL go on IR along with you bestnpkay making WR that sorta messes up any identity. Then you lose your starting QB so those things all together surely did not help. When Miami had Albert Wilson and Jakeem Grant the D had to respect the speed. But of course Gase play calling was so predictable that every DC was laughing at Miami as they should of.
    Gase will ruin that poor kid in NY.

  2. James was good at times and not so good other times.
    Not sure if his level of play is worth the cap number.
    But the opinion of the O-line that Gase was just trying random stuff to generate some offense is telling. No wonder the results were as abysmal as what we witnessed.

  3. At least Gase will have a decent Defensive Coordinator in NY to try and keep games close. Wont surprise me if the Jets have a good year in 2019 but after that Gase’s antics will wear thin on the players who aren’t his boys.

  4. Flores has been a defensive coach in the Patriot organization for Tannehill’s entire professional career so he has been part of preparing the game plan against Miami twice a year which likely helped his interviews. He’s probably reviewed all 88 games Tannehill has played so a decision on quarterback should be quick as well as the offensive identity. Given that the Patriots (and Rams) are moving toward a more ground and pound style I would expect the Dolphins to move along the same path likely saving Tannehill for at least another year as that style can flourish with a mediocre QB.

  5. It seems every year for the last 20+ years there’s been some kind of dysfunction with my Miami.

    I think the incognito issue also set them back,
    They got rid of incognito and he went to 3 more pro bowls with the bills.

    Just an organization that makes poor decisions

  6. Gase certainly faced some adverse conditions while HC. How much these situations actually affected his offensive plans is unknown. More important was his inability to maintain the locker room.
    I’m not sure if any firm decision has been reached yet about the QB or any other position. I think the real roster trimming will begin once Flores has his whole staff are in place and they collectively start watching game tape. Grier has probably identified some that won’t be back simply for cap reasons.
    The real work is going to be how they evaluate & re-stock the 53 man roster with younger FA’s and draftee’s.

  7. “All year, we never had an offensive identity,” James said, via ESPN.com. “When things go really wrong, you don’t know what to go to if you don’t have any identity. You just end up trying random stuff.”
    — The identity was a dink-and-dunk offense. Screen Passes in under 2 seconds.

    “When things go really wrong”
    — When the dolphins got behind, they would abandon this, and have Tannehill hold the ball extra long to try to throw some long passes, and then he would take sacks; James is right, there was no solid plan for playing from behind; it was random stuff, that usually didn’t work.

  8. I know this sounds simplistic, but when you had a plan and it doesn’t work and you try your next most effective stuff and that doesn’t work, wouldn’t you try things to see if you could get the offense jumpstarted? I always question the term random because we really don’t know how much thought went into these things. The coaching staff may genuinely have believed this was their next best bet. But even if you toss out the word random, trying stuff while a bit desperate, seems like what you have to do .

  9. I cant believe they fired Gase and now getting rid of Tannehill as well. At least they are hiring some Patriots coaches to fix things.

  10. ragnarthegreat What was bad was that they didn’t have a next best thing. That was why Gase was constantly on the bench trying to draw something up instead of watching what his defense was doing. When he stated that he didn’t have a clue what Burke was up to, that is not a real confidence builder in your head coach. He is supposed to oversee all of the aspects of the team, not just one slice of it. And he wasn’t doing well on that one slice. I haven’t seen it said, but the fact that he had so many problems with injuries and rogue players during his tenure probably goes right back to his own lack of institutional control.

  11. T-Hill hasn’t been the issue, it’s been play calling and x’s and o’s. You never see Phin receivers in open space and that’s poor play design. I’m happy Gase is gone. Coaches have been the biggest problem. I hope Brian Flores reverses that pattern.

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