2018 NFL Draft: Perfect fit between Dolphins coach Adam Gase, QB Baker Mayfield

Heisman winner Baker Mayfield seems a lot like Gase Jr. (Getty Images)

ORLANDO—A lot of the quarterbacks in this year’s NFL Draft class have mentioned how much they enjoyed meeting with Dolphins coach Adam Gase.

“Don’t sound surprised,” Gase smirked while sitting down for the league’s annual coaches’ breakfast today.

It helps that he’s one of the youngest coaches in the league at 39, but obviously there’s more to it. Gase’s bravado is relentless, and he becomes increasingly defiant when critics come at him. He’s a self-described “hot head” who certainly knows something about losing control of his emotions in games, meetings and even press conferences.

Sound like any of this year’s quarterbacks?

The Dolphins might not have a shot to get him at No. 11, but Oklahoma’s Baker Mayfield seems like a perfect match for Gase.

“We’re close in personality probably,” Gase said. “I like the way he plays… I think Baker’s personality is something that’s infectious to other guys.

“There’s a competitiveness that you love to see. You can tell that he doesn’t want to lose at anything that he’s doing. I don’t know what else he could possibly be doing, but whatever it is, he wants to win that.”

Mayfield said of Gase last month, “I think we related a lot, mindset-wise on offense. He’s a smart guy. There’s a reason he’s a young coach and he’s that successful.”

Mayfield is an undeniable talent and won the Heisman Trophy last year, but some draft analysts believe his antics and attitude will be a turn off. The Dolphins don’t view it that way.

Gase sees a gutsy, athletic quarterback who runs hot like he does and he’s the last guy who’s going to take issue with that.

He also sees a player who threw an astounding 119 touchdown passes and 21 interceptions in three seasons at Oklahoma while averaging 307 yards per game. Mayfield led the Sooners to a 12-2 season and had them on the brink of reaching the National Championship Game before losing to Georgia in overtime.

The fact that he’s demonstrative doesn’t count against that résumé. Gase counts it as a plus.

“As a coach, you love guys like that,” he said. “You want to be around them because that gives you a little bit more. You want to make sure you do more for that guy to put him in a better position. When you get that kind of energy from guys, it’s fun to be around. I’ve enjoyed the amount of time we’ve been able to spend with him.

“Some of the things I do aren’t always great. Sometimes the passion and emotion gets the best of you and sometimes you do things that are positive, sometimes you do things where you look back and wish you had done something different. That’s part of this sport. It’s emotion. It’s a violent game. A lot of things happen in a matter of split-seconds.”

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