Surprisingly, it is Brian Flores and not Matt Patricia who appears to be Bill Belichick's true NFL successor.
In my Matt Patricia article, I made mention that his failure to instill the Patriots total authoritarian culture in Detroit came from his inability to implement Bill Belichick's defensive scheme largely due to Patricia's inability to scheme up Interceptions. Brian Flores does not suffer from this ailment and thus can be as Belichickian as he pleases.
Brian Flores, Interception Guru
A plain observation reveals coach Bill Belichick gets away with a lot of stuff other head coaches can't even dream of. Belichick can be cold to media, staff and players but justify this odd behavior with overwhelming success. Brian Flores may not be as cold as his mentor but the sudden and cruel benching of an in form Ryan Fitzpatrick shows he does have that side to him. Brian Flores had to justify that decision or risked losing the locker room, luckily for everyone involved he kept his fast ball on the defensive end and oversaw an easy transition to a less proven but less turnover prone QB in Tua Tagovailoa. Brian Flores can back his brash decision making with wins and a lack of turnovers thus eliminating majority of the criticism and allowing him to take a Belichick level grip on the organization.
Brian Flores Ahead Of The Curve
Brian Flores saw his secondary make the leap from League average to borderline League best in one offseason, Flores also saw the pass rush unit jump from League worst to about League average. It took Belichick 4 years to post a top 10 pass rush unit in New England, Patricia never got there but Flores may creep in all before his 3rd season. In terms of scheming interceptions he started out stronger than his closest peer or his mentor and made the biggest leap in year 2. Brian Flores struggled to generate pressure in year one but with him employing Belichick ghost tactics to get the QB to hold onto the ball longer his pass rush unit is now above average and a strong draft focused on linebackers is separating them from being a problem.
Brian Flores, Chris Grier And A Bright Future
In the Matt Patricia article I assigned a large portion of the blame of the recent collapse of the Lions Patriot culture transplant to GM Bob Quinn being unable to draft and acquire high level talent for his coach on a consistent basis. Brian Flores does not need to worry about such misfortunes when it comes to his GM Chris Grier who has a very strong record for identifying talent in his 13 years in Miami. Grier was Director Of College Scouting for the Miami Dolphin's from 2007 to 2015 before transitioning to team GM in 2016. Miami has been consistently talented during Grier's reign and in Brian Flores he finally has a head coach who can bring the best out of the talent through providing a healthy and competitive work environment for development to take place.
Bill Belichick performed the inhuman act of identifying, drafting, developing and handling who stays and goes by himself. Brian Flores has Chris Grier to handle half of this heavy burden allowing him to double down on just scheming and developing. The structure is in place, the QB was one of the most hyped QB prospects of all time with a lot of backing/ faith in the organization and the coach is extremely promising. The Miamin Dolphins future could be something special.Published 24 Dec 2020, 08:37 IST