Just want to wish you a happy and healthy New Year. Please don't drink and drive this holiday because I don't want to lose any readers. I wish you all much health and many blessings for 2010.
Let me share with you some information:
Running back Ricky Williams, nursing a shoulder injury, was limited in practice according the team's practice and injury report Thursday afternoon. He was the only Miami player limited in any way. He will play against the Steelers, but it is possible the Dolphins will make Kory Sheets active to guard against losing Williams during the game.
The year went out with quite a bang from the media perspective Thursday. The final question to coach Tony Sparano for 2009, indeed for the decade?
"Coach, will you be the coach at Alabama?"
Sparano cracked up.
I am quite comfortable reporting to you Sparano will not be leaving the Dolphins after this season. He loves his job. He does it well and he has more than earned his third season as Miami's head coach in 2010.
His staff? That's another matter.
My guess is despite regression by the defense, Paul Pasqualoni will be retained as defensive coordinator for 2010. Sparano has a lot of respect for Pasqualoni.
My guess is Sparano wants offensive coordinator Dan Henning back in 2010, but that is harder to predict because Henning is up there in years, doesn't need the job or the money, and so he will decide after the season his own status. Sparano would like Henning back, but it's impossible to know if the elder statesman of the Miami staff will return.
For the record, both Pasqualoni and Henning were asked their desire or intentions for 2010 and both dodged the questions.
Jason Taylor also declined to discuss if he is planning to return to Miami in 2010 or not.
“I am planning on trying to win a football game Sunday and that is the only thing I care about to be honest,' Taylor said. "I am not going to talk about anything else. Only thing is to try and beat the Pittsburgh Steelers and get to 8-8 and see what happens."
The answer is telling and here is why: I reported two months ago that Taylor was perfectly happy in Miami and wanted to return in 2010. He even told one of the TV crews as much during a production meeting prior to a game. But I now must report that has changed somewhat. Taylor is now undecided about returning to Miami in 2010, according to my sources.
The Dolphins, you see, started putting Taylor on the sideline on obvious passing downs in November. I told you about the curious strategy back then. I also told you Taylor didn't like it. And that is causing him to re-think his future in Miami because the guy is one of the decade's best pass-rushers and to not use him in that role is to not use him correctly.
So I am told Taylor will have some soul-searching to do before deciding where he wants to play in 2010. Stay tuned.
I think the Dolphins need Taylor. Maybe they can live without the eight or so sacks he can deliver. But you saw him chew out Miami's young defenders on the sideline last week? The Dolphins need that type of veteran and that type of leadership.
They need Taylor. Let's hope he feels the same way.
Again, Happy New Year's everyone.