The Bengals are preparing for tonight's Wild Card playoff game against the Steelers, but while they do, news is breaking that Bears offensive coordinator Adam Gase is expected to be announced as the new head coach of the Miami Dolphins later this afternoon. And, per Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, Bengals defensive backs coach Vance Joseph will be his defensive coordinator.
Rapoport updated his original statement on Joseph saying this:
And there's further reports that it's not a done deal yet from Tom Pelissero of USA Today.
Alex Marvez of FOX Sports is further confirming the report.
And, per Marvez Bengals linebackers coach Matt Burke will be joining Joseph in Miami.
Joseph is in his second year as the co-secondary coach of the Bengals. Prior to that, he spent six years with the 49ers and three years with the Texans, all as a defensive backs coach. Joseph played college football at Colorado University as a quarterback and running back.
Burke is in his second season as the Bengals linebackers coach and his 12th year in the NFL. He spent five years as the Detroit Lions' linebackers coach prior to joining Cincinnati and spent five seasons prior to that on the Tennessee Titans coaching staff, working as an administrative assistant and defensive assistant. A native of Hudson, Massachusetts, Burke played safety at Dartmouth and was part of an undefeated Ivy League championship team in 1996.
If this proves true, Joseph will be the second Bengals defensive backs coach turned Dolphins defensive coordinator — Kevin Coyle being the first. Coyle was fired in October by the Dolphins after the team got off to a rough start and is currently unemployed.
Joseph is a coaching favorite among the Bengals organization and someone who the Bengals blocked from taking a defensive coordinator position with another team last season. Last year around this time, the Bengals blocked Joseph from interviewing with the 49ers and Broncos for their defensive coordinator roles. This time around, the Bengals can't block Joseph from taking a job with another team as his contract is up at the end of the season, essentially making him a free agent.
Over the offseason, Dre Kirkpatrick told me of Joseph, "He pretty much helped me understand how to break down film so much better and more efficiently," Kirkpatrick said. "It helps in such a big way to learn better off-the-field studying, which makes the game easier on the field. He pretty much helped me understand how to break down film so much better and more efficiently," Kirkpatrick said. "It helps in such a big way to learn better off-the-field studying, which makes the game easier on the field."
While the Bengals blocking Joseph last season cost him a chance to advance his career, he said he felt very fortunate to be with the Bengals, as he told the Cincinnati Enquirer.
"I'm blessed to have a great job, great organization, great owner, great family, great room to coach," Joseph said. "For me, it's a blessing either way. You work your entire life in coaching to have advancement, and I want to be a coordinator, obviously, so that part, obviously, stung a little bit, but the business side and having a contract, that's the business side. It's like being a player. A player can't just leave under contract. That's the way I looked at it. It wasn't a personal issue at all. I have a great job, great room."
We'll keep you updated on any further developments with Joseph and the Bengals' coaching staff. It's important to note, Bengals offensive coordinator Hue Jackson was scheduled to have an interview with the Dolphins for the head coaching job tomorrow, but, that interview will be cancelled if Rapoport's report proves true. Jackson is still scheduled to interview with the 49ers and Browns tomorrow. And, there's reported interest in Bengals defensive coordinator Paul Guenther from the Browns and Eagles, too.