Coaching Carousel

2013-06-05 15:27:59
By JEFF PAUR
Sr Fantasy Writer
RealTime Fantasy Sports

Philbin takes over the Dolphins

Once again, we had plenty of changes at head coach in the NFL this offseason. We have seven new coaches in the league for 2013. This isn't a huge surprise, though, as teams are in a win-now mode more than ever. There is little margin for error these days, especially if you consider how quickly teams seem to be able to turn it around.

The big question is, how do these coaching hires impact fantasy teams? Well, that is what we are here to tell you. We'll give you the lowdown on all the coaching moves and how they could impact fantasy players on those teams moving forward.

The Colts hired Chuck Pagano as their new head coach. Pagano was the defensive coordinator for the Ravens last season and a secondary coach for them the previous few seasons. He obviously has a defensive background but hired long-time offensive coordinator Bruce Arians to run the offense. Arians is a good hire for fantasy teams as he is an innovative coach with a history of good offenses. Arians is a good hire for Andrew Luck. He should do all he can to make Luck succeed, especially early in his career. Expect the Colts to have a little bit of a pass-first system but they won't forget about the run based off his history.

Mike Mularkey gets another shot at being a head coach, getting hired by the Jaguars this offseason. Mularkey was the one-time head coach of the Bills but didn't last long in that role. He had a lot of success as the offensive coordinator for the Falcons the last few seasons, though. Mularkey is an innovative coach that likes to throw the ball. He'll bring a lot more imagination to the Jaguars' offense and should be a good mentor for Blaine Gabbert. He still needs the pieces to put up the numbers he did in Atlanta, but should be able to produce some solid fantasy players with the guys in place right now in Jacksonville.

Kansas City gave Romeo Crennel a shot to be their head coach late last season and liked what they saw, hiring him to be their full-time head coach during the offseason. Crennel has a defensive background but also was a head coach in Cleveland for several seasons. He had some success in Cleveland but didn't produce many big fantasy players. He brings a conservative approach to the offense and should have a run-first system in place with Jamaal Charles and Peyton Hillis getting plenty of chances to run the ball.

The Dolphins went offensive with their hire, getting former Packers offensive coordinator Joe Philbin to run the team. Philbin was a part of the prolific offenses in Green Bay and should bring a fresh approach to Miami. Expect the Dolphins to be pass first in their new scheme. They don't have the weapons the Packers do but Philbin will move guys around and create mismatches as best he can in the passing game. The quarterbacks and receivers get a boost in value with Philbin around.

Oakland hired another new coach, hiring Dennis Allen to take over as head coach. Allen was the defensive coordinator in Denver last season and has been a coach on the defensive side of the ball for several seasons. He is a young coach with not a ton of experience but a pretty good track record to date. His defenses do well in causing turnovers and pressuring the quarterback. He made a good hire at offensive coordinator, hiring long-time coordinator Greg Knapp to call plays. Knapp will bring a zone-blocking running scheme to Oakland. He does like to run the ball but won't ignore the pass and has a history of producing in the passing game with guys like Matt Schaub and Michael Vick. So while Allen is a defensive guy, Knapp brings some excitement to the offense in Oakland and should produce some good numbers for his fantasy players although former head coach Hue Jackson was a better fantasy offensive mind last season.

The Rams made a big hire in Jeff Fisher, a respected coach with a track record of success. He should help change the culture of losing in St. Louis. Fisher is a defensive-first coach, bringing a hard-nosed style of football to the team. He will grind it out more than air it out. The Rams won't ignore the pass but the running game should get a workout. Steven Jackson should benefit from the hire. But Sam Bradford won't be ignored. Fisher knows the league is moving to a pass-first league, so you can expect him to adjust some. The Rams will adjust to what defenses give them but expect them to be more of a run-first, conservative team most of the time.

Tampa went the college route, hiring former Rutgers head coach Greg Schiano to become the man in charge. Schiano had plenty of success at a school not known for football, which is encouraging. He produced a lot of big-time running backs in college, which is encouraging for newly drafted Doug Martin. Mike Sullivan will be the offensive coordinator. Sullivan was in New York the past several seasons and should do well for the Bucs. He was a mentor for Eli Manning and should benefit Josh Freeman. He'll have a balanced approach offensively but might lean a little towards the pass if the Giants past few seasons are any indication.

jeff@rtsports.com

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