Latest On Vic Fangio

The Dolphins appeared to make a significant addition to their coaching staff yesterday, coming to terms on a deal with Vic Fangio to make him their new defensive coordinator. Contrary to what some have since reported, though, the move does not appear to be official at this point.

When speaking to Fangio himself, both 9News’ Mike Klis and Michael Silver of the San Francisco Chronicle were told that a deal is not, in fact, in place yet (Twitter links). In the latter’s case, Fangio stated that “nothing has been decided on my end,” a reference to his commitment to head to Miami. NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero reported that his Dolphins contract is three years in length (with a team option for a fourth year) and will make him the league’s highest-paid coordinator.

Fangio, 64, was always likely to be a hot commodity on the DC market when he made it clear he would return to coaching in 2023. The former Broncos head coach had previously stated his intention of taking on a coordinator position, rather than another HC opportunity. Over the course of his decorated career, he established himself as a one of the game’s top defensive minds in terms of scheme and play-calling, as well as one with connections all over the league.

The Panthers were tapped as a likely destination for Fangio in the wake of their Frank Reich hiring. It was reported early today, to no surprise, that Carolina was willing to meet his financial demands, though even in the uncertainty regarding his future they are no longer expected to pursue him. That could make another notable DC vacancy one to keep an eye on in this situation.

Silver notes the “huge amount” of respect shared between 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan and Fangio. The latter served as San Francisco’s DC from 2011-14, and it was reported in the fall that a return to the Bay Area could be in the cards. The 49ers have enjoyed elite play on the defensive side of the ball under current coordinator DeMeco Ryans, but he has been one of the top HC candidates this offseason and is widely expected to soon become the Texans’ new bench boss. His departure could open the door for Fangio to replace him, should the Miami agreement fall through.

On that point, Pelissero’s colleague Cameron Wolfe tweets that Fangio had been a target of Dolphins HC Mike McDaniel before he even began his tenure with the team this past season. That underscores the desire the Dolphins have long had to bring him onboard, though it remains to be seen if they have officially done so this offseason.

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