The Miami Dolphins are reportedly holding in-house interviews Friday with offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains and special teams coordinator Darren Rizzi about the team's head coaching vacancy.
Miami posted a 7-9 record in 2018, leading to Gase's dismissal. The franchise has qualified for the playoffs just twice since 2002, including only once in the past 10 years.
The Dolphins' struggles this past season were deeper than their near-.500 record might suggest. They ranked 29th in total defense and 31st in total offense with major holes on both sides of the ball that must be addressed before they land back in the contender category.
As always, it starts with the quarterback.
New Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians, who will be tasked with transforming Jameis Winston into a championship-level signal-caller, said it best:
"You have to have a quarterback. You can't win without a quarterback," he told reporters Thursday. "I don't care how good your defense is, how well you run the ball, you're getting your ass beat in the playoffs to a good quarterback."
So between the Dolphins' uncertainty at quarterback and their recent struggles, it could be tough to attract high-end coaching candidates.
In turn, the front office may decide promoting either Loggains or Rizzi, who've had a close-up look at the team's shortcomings, is the best hope of a quick turnaround.
Rizzi, 48, previously worked as a collegiate head coach with the New Haven Chargers (1999-2001) and Rhode Island Rams (2008).
Loggains, 38, has never served in a head coaching capacity.