Dolphins tried to run a Patriots-style offense in 2019 and it may have led to the eventual firing of their OC

One of the most surprising assistant coach firings of the offseason came back in December when the Miami Dolphins decided to cut ties with offensive coordinator Chad O'Shea. The reason the firing was a surprise is that it came after just one season. Another reason the move was a surprise is that O'Shea had a long history with Dolphins head coach Brian Flores. The two men spent 10 seasons together on the Patriots coaching staff before making the move to Miami in 2019 after Flores was hired as head coach. 

Although the Dolphins offense wasn't great last year -- it only averaged 6.5 points per game over the first four weeks of the season -- the unit did seem to slowly get better every week. Not only did the Dolphins score at least 20 points in each their final seven games, but they averaged an impressive 26.7 points per game in the span.

Despite the strong way the offense ended the season, O'Shea still got canned, and it appears we now know why. According to the Miami Herald, O'Shea, who spent 10 seasons in New England (2009-18), decided to implement a Patriots-style offense when he arrived in Miami, and although that sounds like a good idea in theory, it apparently turned into a disaster. The Patriots run a complex offense and it seems the young Dolphins players just weren't ready for something that complicated. 

At least one anonymous player in Miami referred to the offense as a "sh-- show" last season. Apparently, the Dolphins didn't just struggle with offense in practice, but they also struggled in the film room. One player told the Herald that O'Shea's ability to teach and instruct while watching film was a total "Disaster."

One reason things apparently got tense in the building is that O'Shea would tell Flores that players weren't doing a good job of picking up the playbook, while players felt it was the other way around, they didn't think O'Shea did a good job of teaching it. 

Flores clearly ended up siding with the players, because O'Shea was fired just one day after the Dolphins' season finale, which ironically enough, came against the Patriots. In that game, O'Shea's offense put up 20 points on New England's vaunted defense, which played a big part in the Dolphins ability to pull off a 27-24 upset win. Miami's win was a big one, because it cost the Patriots any chance they had at earning a first-round bye in the playoffs. 

Although O'Shea got fired, he wasn't out of work for long. Less than three weeks after his firing, the Browns hired him as the team's wide receivers coach and passing game coordinator. 

CBS Sports Writer

John Breech has been at CBS Sports since July 2011 and currently spends most of his time writing about the NFL. He's believed to be one of only three people in the world who thinks that Andy Dalton will... Full Bio

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