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Wednesday, January 8, 2014
Focus on Eagles' Lazor makes sense

By Phil Sheridan

PHILADELPHIA -- If the Miami Dolphins' interest in Eagles quarterbacks coach Bill Lazor seems sudden -- based on one 10-6 season on Chip Kelly's staff -- there are two things to bear in mind.

First, the NFL moves more quickly now. You don't have to be a 55-year-old with 25 years in the league to be a coordinator. In fact, the opposite is true. The younger, the better. Teams are all in a hurry to identify and target up-and-coming coaching talent, so a year of exposure to Kelly's offense and his work with Nick Foles make the 41-year-old Lazor intriguing.

Second, Lazor didn't just materialize on the Eagles staff last year. He has worked for Dan Reeves in Atlanta, Joe Gibbs in Washington, Mike Holmgren in Seattle and Kelly here. He has coached NFL quarterbacks and spent three seasons as offensive coordinator at the University of Virginia.

That's a pretty varied resume. Coupled with Lazor's intelligence, it makes him a natural candidate for an NFL coordinator job.

Lazor's interview with the Dolphins was first reported by ESPN's Adam Schefter.

Will Miami be the right fit? Coupled with news that the Dolphins may go after Eagles personnel man Tom Gamble as their next general manager, it could be a perfect situation for Lazor. Current head coach Joe Philbin will be under pressure to win next year. If Lazor can raise quarterback Ryan Tannehill's game to another level, he can be seen as a difference maker and instant head coaching candidate.

If Philbin doesn't win and Gamble is the GM, Lazor could still be on solid ground in Miami.

Kelly said Monday that he wouldn't hold any of his assistants back if they had opportunities for advancement.

"Everything is done on an individual basis," Kelly said. "But I'm never going to stand in the way of someone bettering themselves."