Friday, February 18, 2011

Former Dolphin Bryan Cox could join Sparano's staff

The Miami Dolphins may be adding a familiar face to their coaching staff, as former Dolphins linebacker Bryan Cox reportedly interviewed with the team last week.

Originally a fifth-round pick by the Dolphins in 1991, Cox was selected to three Pro Bowls in five seasons with the team. He also had stints with the Chicago Bears (1996-97), New York Jets (1998-2000), New England Patriots (2001) and New Orleans Saints (2002).

In 165 career games over 12 seasons, Cox totaled 938 tackles, 51.5 sacks, 22 forced fumbles, 14 fumble recoveries, four interceptions, one safety, and one touchdown.

Following his playing career, Cox spent two years as a TV analyst before joining Eric Mangini's staff with the New York Jets as assistant defensive line coach. He followed Mangini to Cleveland in 2009 and served two seasons as the team's defensive line coach before Mangini and his staff were let go.


Analysis

A highly-productive player and a fan favorite during his time with the Dolphins, Cox is well-respected throughout the game for his playing career and has built a solid start in the coaching ranks as well.

The Dolphins announced a handful of changes to the coaching staff in late January, and though they have not said the staff is finalized for 2011, there are no immediate openings.

It's possible, however, that Cox could join the staff in a new assistant role, such as that of a generic "defensive assistant" or possibly as an assistant to a position coach.

One option would be an assistant linebackers coach alongside Bill Sheridan. However, Cox has never coached linebackers despite that being his position as a player, and it's quite possible he could become an assistant defensive line coach with Kacy Rodgers.

With more control over his staff this offseason, Sparano has already hired a few former NFL players from the 90s and 00s, including assistant wide receivers coach Ike Hilliard and tight ends coach Dan Campbell.

A former Dolphins great like Bryan Cox, with plenty of playing experience to draw upon and some solid work as an assistant coach as well, would make another nice addition to Sparano's staff for 2011.


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