MIAMI (CBSMiami) – The Miami Dolphins have hired Dennis Hickey as the team’s new general manager.

Hickey, who spent the last 18 seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, was among eight candidates interviewed by owner Stephen Ross, his aide Matt Higgins and executive vice president of football administration Dawn Aponte. The other finalist was Dolphins assistant general manager Brian Gaine, who worked under Ireland.

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“I am excited that Dennis Hickey is our new General Manager,” Ross said in a press release. ““When we started the search, I outlined qualities that I was looking for in this position. These included a collaborative team-first person who can work with Joe, demonstrated player evaluation expertise, and someone who is open-minded and creative. Dennis fit all of these criteria and I’m looking forward to having him get started.”

Hickey’s new job will include overseeing all aspects of football operations, reporting directly to Ross.

Hickey brings 18 years of scouting and personnel experience to his new role with the Dolphins.

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“Miami is a great franchise with a historic tradition and passionate fans. The opportunity to work with Stephen Ross, Joe Philbin and the entire Dolphins organization to build a team that wins on a consistent basis is exciting, “ Hickey added in the press release. “The Dolphins certainly have talented players and I am eager to hit the ground running with our personnel and coaching staffs. We will all work together to construct a team that will make our organization and fans proud. I would like want to thank the Buccaneers organization and Glazer family for the past 18 years. I have been fortunate to have had the opportunity to work with and learn from a number of quality coaches, personnel staffs and General Managers during my time in Tampa Bay and I am thankful for the opportunities and experiences that they provided for me and my family.”

Ross turned to Hickey, who interviewed for the first time 10 days into the search. His task will be to upgrade the roster for coach Joe Philbin after Miami collapsed late in the season to blow a playoff berth and finish 8-8.

The Dolphins haven’t been above .500 since 2008, the longest such stretch in franchise history. Their tumultuous 2013 season included a locker-room bullying scandal that drew national scrutiny, and a report on the NFL investigation into the case will be released after the Super Bowl.

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