J.J. Watt gushes about new Miami Dolphins DC: ‘A truly great man’

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Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Anthony Weaver got a ringing endorsement from likely future Hall of Famer J.J. Watt as the assistant coach is taking over as the new defensive coordinator of the Miami Dolphins.

Weaver was the defensive line coach for the Houston Texans while Watt was wrapping up his time there.

“You’re getting a great man, a truly great man,” Watt said during a CBS Super Bowl Zoom session on Tuesday.

“I love Weave. We’re extremely close. I’m very excited to see him get this opportunity to be a DC and I have no doubts he will one day be a head coach and be a great head coach.”

Watt was coming off his third NFL Defensive Player of the Year award when Weaver arrived in Houston for the 2016 NFL season. Weaver eventually became the Texans’ defensive coordinator for the 2020 campaign, which was Watt’s last with the Texans before ending his NFL career with two seasons with the Arizona Cardinals. The former star defensive end now works as an analyst for CBS.

Weaver was hired by the Dolphins as a defensive coordinator to replace Vic Fangio, who lasted just one season in the position in Miami. He will become the third person to man the role in Mike McDaniel’s three seasons as Dolphins head coach. Weaver and McDaniel previously worked together with the Cleveland Browns.

Also a former NFL defensive end, Weaver has bolstered his staff by reportedly adding former Green Bay Packers defensive coordinator Joe Barry to become Miami’s linebackers coach/run game coordinator.

That is combined with the news that Anthony Campanile is leaving the Dolphins after four seasons as their linebackers coach. Coincidentally, he reportedly is going to join the Packers’ staff.

Weaver is coming to the Dolphins after serving as the Baltimore Ravens’ defensive line coach. While he was with the Ravens, they allowed the third-fewest rushing yards in the NFL.

Watt’s evaluation of Weaver should bring confidence to the Dolphins’ stable of pass rushers as well. Though he was hindered by injuries during their time together, Watt did manage to record 16 sacks during the 2018 season.

Miami closed this past season without pass rushers Cameron Goode, Bradley Chubb and Jalean Phillips because of injuries. It reportedly is unknown if any of them will be ready in time to start the 2024 season.

But as soon as they are able to come back, they likely will be working with an outstanding new coordinator, if Watt’s analysis is accurate.

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Mike is a veteran journalist who has covered the NFL for almost three decades. He has been an avid follower of the AFC East since the days of Bob Griese and is looking forward to an exciting new era in the division.