Cutler was asked about the possibility of losing his offensive coordinator to a head-coaching job and replied with a joke: “I was going to ask you guys today if you could write some bad articles about him. Maybe we can cool him off some.”
As it turned out, Cutler didn’t get his wish because Gase now will be busy coaching the Dolphins.
Cutler, though, said he was happy for Gase.
“He has worked extremely hard his entire career and is very deserving of this opportunity,” Cutler said Saturday. “I wish he could stay with us in Chicago but everyone has a journey and this is the next part of his. His work with quarterbacks is well documented and I know first-hand how good he is. He will now continue to have success in this league as a head coach. I thank him for all his hard work and look forward to following this next step in his career.”
The most famous quarterback who worked with Gase was Peyton Manning, who set NFL single-season records in 2013 with 55 touchdown passes and 5,477 passing yards in Gase’s first year as offensive coordinator for the Denver Broncos.
“I’m very happy for Adam,” Manning said. “Adam had a great impact on me during our three years together here in Denver as my quarterbacks coach and then as offensive coordinator. He’s an extremely hard worker, a grinder. He’s extremely bright on all things football, an excellent communicator and always eager to learn more. He asks a lot of questions and writes everything down. I’ve always been impressed with his work ethic and his eagerness to learn more. He’ll be an excellent head coach, without a doubt. He is ready for this for sure.”
The man of charge of the Denver Broncos football operations also knows a thing or two about quarterbacking because it happens to be Hall of Famer John Elway, and he also had nothing but positive things to say about Gase.
“Adam is a bright, young, energetic football coach who has worked very hard for this opportunity,” Elway said. “I anticipate that Adam will be very successful as the head coach of the Miami Dolphins.”
Gase got his start in coaching in 2005 with the Detroit Lions after he had spent two seasons as a scouting assistant.
NFL Network analyst Steve Mariucci was the Lions head coach at that time and he said Gase went to him to ask him for a coaching job, a move that impressed Mariucci.
“What I got out of that meeting (was) it’s unusual for a young guy to go to a head coach behind closed doors and say, ‘Hey, I want a job. Hire me, please. I’ll do whatever,’ ” Mariucci said. “So I created a job for him in coaching. I took him away from scouting and put him on the coaching staff as a quality control coach to get his feet wet and work hard and do whatever we asked him to do. I felt that he was very ambitious. I felt that he was very bright and he wanted to work. He was a very young, ambitious, bright kid.
“He retained knowledge and applies what he’s learned and has kind of formulated his own offense and his own way of teaching. I think the players will respond to him. He’s been around some really good quarterbacks, obviously. So I think that
Gase was named Saturday the 12th head coach in Dolphins history.
Gase comes to Miami after his one season in Chicago, where he Bears developed a more balanced attack and went 27th in the NFL in rushing offense to 11th as the unit averaged 25.6 more rushing yards per game. Cutler’s yards per attempt increased by 0.8, the second-largest one-year increase in Cutler’s career. He also threw seven fewer interceptions than in 2014.
Before his one season in Chicago, Gase spent six seasons with the Broncos, two each as wide receivers coach, quarterbacks coach and finally offensive coordinator. While Gase was offensive coordinator in 2013 and 2014, the Broncos led the NFL in scoring offense (34.0 points per game), total offense (430.1 yards per game) and passing offense (315.8 yards per game).
In 2013, the Broncos set 14 total NFL records for offense in scoring, including total points (606) and touchdowns (76). The explosive offense helped Denver finish the regular season 13-3, winning the AFC West and earning the top seed in the AFC playoffs, where the Broncos won the conference title and played in Super Bowl XLVIII.
During his two seasons as offensive coordinator, seven players from the Broncos offense were named to the Pro Bowl: RB C.J. Anderson (2014), T Ryan Clady (2014), Manning (2013-14), WR Emmanuel Sanders (2014), WR Demaryius Thomas (2013-14), TE Julius Thomas (2013-14) and G Louis Vasquez (2013).
An Ypsilanti, Michigan, native, Gase also spent time with the San Francisco 49ers (2008) and Detroit Lions (2003-07), where he began his NFL career in scouting. He also worked as a recruiting assistant (2001-02) and graduate assistant (2000) at LSU under Head Coach Nick Saban.