Dolphins fire off. coordinator Lazor
DAVIE, Fla. (AP) Miami Dolphins interim coach Dan Campbell is running out of time to make a good impression, so he’s going with a new play-caller to jump-start his feeble offense.
Campbell fired offensive coordinator Bill Lazor on Monday and assigned Zac Taylor to be the primary play-caller. Taylor will remain quarterbacks coach.
The moves came after the Dolphins lost 38-20 to the New York Jets on Sunday. The Dolphins (4-7) were shut out in the first half and have scored fewer than 21 points in each of their past five games.
Lazor was in his second season with the Dolphins, while Taylor is in his fourth year.
”I just felt like it was time to move in another direction,” Campbell said. ”Offensively we’ve been anemic for five weeks now. We’ve tried to do a number of different things, and it just didn’t work out.”
Lineup changes are possible, Campbell said.
The Dolphins rank 27th in the NFL in offensive points at 18.5 points per game, down from 22.6 last season. They’re next to last in third-down conversion at 28 percent.
Campbell hopes to return as coach next season, but the Dolphins are only 3-4 since he replaced Joe Philbin, who was fired Oct. 5. The Dolphins also changed defensive coordinators in October.
Taylor is a former Nebraska quarterback and the son-in-law of Mike Sherman, who coincidentally was fired as the Dolphins’ offensive coordinator two years ago and replaced by Lazor.
”Zac is a very bright guy,” Campbell said. ”I have a lot of faith in Zac. If I didn’t, I wouldn’t have done this.”
Lazor’s play-calling was second-guessed because of his emphasis on the pass. The Dolphins are averaging 4.6 yards per rush, seventh-best, but run the ball less than any other team in the league – only 33 percent of the time. On Sunday, they had nine rushing attempts, their fewest since 1986.
In addition, Lazor drew criticism for giving Ryan Tannehill little latitude in calling audibles.
Tannehill has regressed in his fourth season. His completion percentage, yards per attempt and interception rate are all worse than a year ago.
The Dolphins’ latest loss dropped them to 0-5 against AFC East teams, and they’re likely to miss the playoffs for the seventh consecutive year.
”It’s hugely disappointing,” Tannehill said following Sunday’s game. ”I came in with such high expectations. I think our team came in with such high expectations, and to see this season go the way it’s been, it’s tough and it hurts. You look in that locker room and the talent we have, the guys that we have, and it hurts. There’s no way we should be sitting where we’re at, but we are, and that’s on our shoulders.”
Along with the play-calling shake-up, Phil McGeoghan was promoted to wide receivers coach. He has been assistant wide receivers coach since 2012.
Miami plays host to Baltimore on Sunday.
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