Miami's Mind Made Up?

In less than a month at the helm of the Dolphins, Bill Parcells has fired the head coach, most of his staff and the general manager. In the middle of Leslie Frazier's visit to Miami, it has leaked that Parcells has already hired a quarterbacks coach -- making the role of his new coach seem a little moot.

How much power is the new Dolphins coach going to have? From the looks of things, it appears Bill Parcells is going to be pulling all the strings. While Leslie Frazier met with Dolphins officials Monday night, it would seem that Parcells isn't going to let his new head coach make all the decisions – unless, of course, the decision to hire has already been made.

In a move that doesn't have much in the way of precedent, the Dolphins hired Ole Miss offensive coordinator David Lee, who has had a working relationship with Parcells for 34 years, to be the team's quarterbacks coach. The move could signal a couple of things.

First, it shows that whoever the new coach is – most sources in Miami say that Parcells bobo Tony Sparano is the clear frontrunner – won't have the latitude to select his own coaching staff. That job, it would appear will fall squarely on Parcells' wide shoulders. While Sparano is tied to the Cowboys until they're eliminated from the playoffs – which may not be until the Super Bowl – the fact that Parcells has begun the process of assembling assistant coaches without having a head coach in place seems like a clear sign that the new coach (Sparano?) is going to sign off on the hire.

Second, making a quarterbacks coach the first hire of the new regime could also point to the Dolphins leaning toward quarterback Brian Brohm of Louisville with the first overall pick of the draft.

Lee, who was hired by Parcells when he came to the Cowboys, has a long history with the old ball coach, dating back to 1974 when Lee was the quarterback at Vanderbilt and Parcells was the defensive coordinator.

This news should be viewed as good news for the Vikings, who don't want to lose Frazier, who potentially could be the second defensive coordinator the team has lost in 12 months if hired by the Dolphins. It is unlikely that a coach with no ties to Parcells would be hamstrung by adding assistant coaches that he has no experience with, which leads back to Sparano being the clear frontrunner for the job.

Frazier, who toured the Dolphins facility Monday, is scheduled for a series of interviews today before being ushered out later today to make room for former Ravens defensive Rex Ryan, who is scheduled to arrive in Miami today and interview tonight and Wednesday.

It was feared that when Parcells took over the Dolphins that he was going to be as big of a control freak as he was with the Cowboys. If the pre-emptive hiring of an assistant coach before the head coach is a signal, the controlling nature of the Big Tuna is once again on display front and center.

* Vikings seventh-round draft pick in 2007 – WR Chandler Williams – was signed by the Dolphins Monday.
* It looks as though Chad Pennington will be off the market. Rumors had persisted that Pennington would be cut rather than pay him $4.8 million to potentially back up youngster Kellen Clemens. But Jets GM Mike Tannenbaum said Monday that the quarterback position will be an open competition in training camp with Pennington all but assured of coming back – even if he doesn't agree to a pay cut.

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