Adam Gase thought he had everything going for him last year as the hotshot Broncos offensive coordinator. He was thought to be the next NFL head coach in the making with his bright football mind, young age and strong intellect. With the Broncos putting great offensive numbers last year, he was on fast track to being a boss of his own team.
Imagine the disappointment he felt when he was not hired to be a head coach or be an offensive coordinator for some NFL team. The Broncos did not want him back as their offensive coordinator, either. That was a fait accompli when new Broncos head coach Gary Kubiak wanted his own guy to be his offensive coordinator in Rick Dennison.
Life has a way of throwing curveballs, and Gase experienced it for the first time in his professional career. Fortunately for him, new Bears coach John Fox thought highly enough of him from their Broncos days to hire him as the Bears offensive coordinator. All’s not lost for him after all.
Let’s be honest. Gase is not qualified to be a head coach right now. He is not a good offensive coordinator as people made him out to be. He isn’t ready to handle the responsibility. For all teams knew, he is Josh McDaniels, which a quarterback makes the offensive coordinator look better than he is.
Teams were hesitant to hire the 36-year-old offensive coordinator since they felt Peyton Manning made him more than anything. They realized the Broncos quarterback made his job easy as offensive coordinator by throwing well and putting good numbers in the process. They don’t know if he can do the same with other quarterbacks. His resume as offensive coordinator was working with the future Hall of Fame quarterback only.
Manning was more of a hindrance than a boost for Gase. It’s not the quarterback’s fault. It’s the same reason teams steered clear of McDaniels after understanding most of his success comes from Patriots quarterback Tom Brady.
Gase’s work as offensive coordinator left so much to be desired at times. It showed in last year’s Super Bowl when he could not make adjustments while the Seahawks defense throttled the Broncos offense. It showed again in this year’s divisional playoffs when Manning was getting destroyed like a ragdoll. No one knew why he did not use Broncos running back C.J. Anderson to run the ball.
Teams picked up on that. There’s no way an offensive coordinator is going to be a head coach of an NFL team or a college team if he can’t make adjustments. That hurt him more than being a beneficiary of Manning’s success.
Gase’s age did not help his cause. Teams wondered if he was mature enough to be a leader of men. They questioned if he could command player’s attention at his stage. They were not going to take a risk of the unknown.
From all accounts, it did not seem like Gase interviewed well for teams to consider them to hire him as a head coach.
Gase is not seasoned enough to be considered a head coach. He is not mature enough to handle the grind of 100 hours a week as head coach. He still has work to do.
If he does well as the Bears offensive coordinator, his chances as head coach will go up next year. Teams will have a good read on how he does with Bears quarterback Jay Cutler or whoever is the Bears quarterback next season.
Gase could use work as offensive coordinator. He needs to know when to make adjustments. That will come with experience. Two years of being an offensive coordinator is not enough time to learn on the job. Being a quarterbacks coach to offensive coordinator was a huge leap for him, and coaching Manning is not enough for him to learn on the job.
Gase needs to make most of his opportunity in Chicago. He should be thankful he has one considering no team hired to be their offensive coordinator. He can’t complain about his situation, and he knows that.
He is going to need luck. It’s not going to be easy coaching a headcase in Cutler. Even if the troubled Bears quarterback is released or traded, he is going to have to make do with a quarterback with limited skills.
If Gase can achieve success in the Windy City, we will be talking about him as head coach.
Next year could be make or break for his chances of being a head coach.
It will be interesting to see what he does.
Teams are going to be watching him closely at what he does in Chicago.
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