Greatest Head Coaches in Miami Dolphin History

As I began to research the greatest head coaches of the Miami Dolphins history, I learned a lot about the guys who manned our sidelines.  These days, NFL head coaches are paid millions of dollars per year. Their job is to develop tactics and coordinate a game plan with the rest of the staff.

A good coach will take his team to the playoffs, win division titles, league championship games, and ultimately the Super Bowl.  Right now the longest tenured coaches in the game are Mike McCarthy (Green Bay Packers), Mike Tomlin (Pittsburg Steelers), Sean Payton (New Orleans Saints), Marvin Lewis (Cincinnati Bengals), and Bill Belichick (New England Patriots).  It’s no coincidence that this group has been the to playoffs multiple times and won a few Super Bowl titles.

The Miami Dolphins have an illustrious history of winning.  They have had some great names roaming the sidelines so let’s take a look at the entire list.

All Past Head Coaches of the Miami Dolphin Football Team

  • George Wilson 1966- 1969
  • Don Shula 1970- 1995
  • Jimmy Johnson 1996- 1999
  • Dave Wannstedt 2000-2004
  • Jim Bates 2004
  • Nick Saban 2005- 2006
  • Cam Cameron 2007
  • Tony Sparano 2008- 2011
  • Joe Philbin 2012- 2015
  • Dan Campbell 2015
  • Adam Gase 2016- present

George Wilson was the head coach from 1966- 1969. He was the first head coach to lead an American Football League franchise.

Don Shula, was one of the most influential and historical figures of the Miami Dolphins. He led the team to 2 Super Bowl Championships in 1972 and 1973, 5 AFC Championships and 11 AFC East Division Championships. Overall he’s made six Super Bowl appearances as a head coach, second most all-time behind Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots.

Jimmy Johnson was the head coach of the Miami Dolphins from 1996-1999. The team didn’t achieve the success that Johnson had when he was with the Cowboys, but they still did alright.  After leaving coaching he appeared in a couple of movies, television commercials, owns a restaurant in Florida, and is a weekly contribution to CBS’s Sunday pregame show.

Dave Wannstedt was the head coach from 2000-2004 and helped lead the team to the AFC East Division Championship in 2000.

Jim Bates was the coach in 2004 but had a short-lived career with the team. Nick Saban was the head coach from 2005-2006 before moving on to Alabama.  There is no doubt he was made to be a college coach as he might be the best ever there, but wasn’t successful in the pros.

Cam Cameron was the head coach in 2007, but after leading the team to the worst record in team history, he was quickly let go.

Bill Parcels brought one of his disciples, Tony Sparano in from 2008-2011. He helped the team win the AFC East Division Championship in 2008. It was one of the greatest year of the team.

Todd Bowles took over for Sparano after he was fired in 2011, but then Joe Philbin was hired to coach the team from 2012- 2015. His career ended by the fan’s disdain for his poor management skills.  Dan Campell finished the season off when Philbin was let go.

Now it’s up to Adam Gase to turn this team around.  He led the Dolphins to the playoffs last year, so he’s on the right track.  Here’s to hoping they can take the next step in 2017 and actually win one in the postseason.