5 reasons the Dolphins still haven’t closed the gap with the Buffalo Bills

Josh Allen, Buffalo Bills (Mandatory Credit: Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports)
Josh Allen, Buffalo Bills (Mandatory Credit: Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports) /
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Buffalo Bills
Ken Dorsey, Buffalo Bills (Mandatory Credit: Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports) /

1. Coaching Continuity

Even with the losses of offensive coordinator Brian Daboll, assistant general manager Joe Schoen, and offensive line coach Bobby Johnson as they went to the New York Giants, the Buffalo Bills’ staff is relatively similar.

Defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier is back again for his sixth season in Buffalo, while other assistants that have held over include Kelly Skipper (RBs coach), Chad Hall (WRs coach), Rob Boras (TEs coach), Eric Washington (DL coach), Bobby Babich (LBs coach), John Butler (DBs coach), and Matthew Smiley (special teams coordinator).

Also, rather than following Daboll and Co. for the Big Apple, Ken Dorsey decided to stay put in Western New York for a fourth year, as he’s been elevated to OC to keep his strong relationship going with Josh Allen. The 2018 first-round pick was instrumental in Dorsey’s promotion, clearing the way for the former national champion with the Miami Hurricanes to take over as the team’s play-caller.

Meanwhile, Mike McDaniel is bringing over a revamped staff to Miami. Outside of DC Josh Boyer, associate HC and RBs coach Eric Studesville, and ST coordinator Danny Crossman, there are few holdovers from the Brian Flores regime. The newbies include OC Frank Smith, WRs coach Wes Welker, and QBs coach Darrell Bevell.

Also, something to note here: since 2008, there have been 90 new head coaching hires, and of them, just 25 coaches have made the playoffs in their first season at the helm. Nick Sirianni was the lone first-year head coach in 2021 to make the playoffs, and since 2018 only six have done so — Sirianni, Frank Reich, and Matt Nagy (2018), Matt LaFleur (2019), Kevin Stefanski and Ron Rivera (2020).