NFL

Miami Dolphins Coach Brian Flores Could Have Tragically Lost His Uncle on 9/11

Miami Dolphins head coach Brian Flores has cracked the code.

Not only does Flores have rookie quarterback Tua Tagovailoa and the Miami Dolphins headed for a playoff berth, but he is becoming one of Bill Belichick’s most successful disciples.

Flores has always credited Belichick, his longtime boss in New England, for helping him develop as a coach. Before he met Belichick, Flores learned so many lessons from his uncle, a New York City firefighter named Darrel Patterson.

Brian Flores has turned the Miami Dolphins around

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The track record for Bill Belichick’s assistants becoming NFL head coaches remains ugly.

Brian Flores, in his second season with the Miami Dolphins, is quickly becoming an outlier. Flores inherited a Dolphins team that committed to building through the draft and high-potential, low-risk free agents rather than handing out massive contracts.

After starting the 2019 season with seven straight losses, Miami closed Flores’ first year at 5-11.

Miami enters its Week 15 matchup with Cam Newton and the Patriots at 8-5. The Dolphins have not made the postseason since 2016.

Flores has done an excellent job creating a winning culture at Miami. The Dolphins were competitive throughout Flores’ first year and took a massive step forward to open the 2020 season.

Flores is exactly who the Dolphins needed

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When the Miami Dolphins hired Brian Flores in February 2019, they needed a capable leader at the top.

Flores has more than lived up to the expectations in Miami. When the Dolphins fired Adam Gase in December 2018, they were a team quickly approaching football purgatory.

In his two years on the job, Flores has ignited hope into a long-suffering fanbase. Miami used the fifth overall pick in April on Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa, who has impressed since taking over the starting job in November.

Brian Flores nearly tragically lost his uncle on 9/11

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Brian Flores spent 14 seasons working for Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots, doing everything from scouting to coaching linebackers.

Flores has long credited Belichick for his personal coaching growth. Similarly, Flores has thanked his uncle, Darrel Patterson, for turning him into a man and introducing him to football.

According to The Palm Beach Post (Fla.), Flores discussed his uncle while reflecting on what 9/11 meant to him in September 2019. His uncle’s unit, Ladder 118, was among the “first trucks to go in” and help at the World Trade Center.

“So nobody came out from that group. [Hamilton] was on sick leave. He had cancer. So he was obviously still devastated by the loss of all his guys in that firehouse.”

Six fire fighters from Ladder 118 died on 9/11, according to The Post. Patterson was still alive when the original story was published.

Flores told reporters that he always thinks about his uncle and Ladder 118, as well as everyone else affected by 9/11, each year.

“Obviously it was a tragic attack,” Flores said. “I remember football bringing a lot of people closer. That’s what I love about the game. It unites.”

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