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The truth and spin about the Miami Dolphins

I try to read most of your comments. And one theme I'm noticing lately is how some of you feel disappointed when one of the coaches says something that is clearly, patently false or just a bunch of hooey.


"Ernest Wilford is improving every day in practice," when everyone knows if he was improving he'd be playing.

"I don't have information on that yet," when discussing injuries that are already diagnosed and have a prognosis and the third person to find out that information (after the doctor/trainer and player) is usually the head coach.

"The right guard job is Shawn Murphy's to lose," when everyone knows the second Donald Thomas can put one foot in front of the other he's starting and Murphy is really not going to pan out in Miami.

"I thought Matt played really well," when Matt Roth plays his first game after being on the non-football injury list but is cut three weeks later for poor performance and other reasons.

"I like our receivers," when Miami's receivers don't often win one-on-one battles and are all flawed in one significant way or another.

The words don't always match the facts. Your eyes tell you one thing while the Miami coaching staff tells you something different.

Well, it happens because that is what the Dolphins staff feels it must do. When your team is as flawed, as filled with voids as the current Dolphins are, you cannot as a coach, fire a broadside into your own ship and add yet another hole. It would be dumb considering the coaching staff is on that ship.

So Tony Sparano and Dan Henning and Paul Pasqualoni tap dance. They try not to outright lie. But they cannot really tell you the whole truth about their Dolphins.

Some of you, and even some media, often forget this fact. You take what coaches say as gospel. It often is not. It often is spin.

"I've got people upstairs that I'm accountable to," Dolphins offensive coordinator Dan Henning explained Thursday. "And when I'm called in to be accountable to them, I explain it to them exactly like it is. They don't like to hear it all the time but that's the way I explain it.

"I can't do that with you and Tony can't do that with you [media]. Because if I explain to you that this is a liability for us and this is a plus for us, then pretty soon that gets written or somebody speaks it on the TV and then somebody on the other side [on other teams] writing that down says, 'Well, they won't do this because he thinks that's a problem,' that type of thing. Understand that from us. You guys know that. I don't have to explain that to you."

So understand, when you read quotes from Sparano or Henning or Pasqualoni that stretch credulity, don't think them unwise or fooled by their own team. Trust me, the Miami's coaches know they have talent problems. They know this team is a work-in-progress.

But what are they supposed to say? We stink like a sewer?

And that leads me to this:

The Dolphins offense and Dolphins defense stink like a sewer.

Naw, not really. But they are both very, very troubled.

The offense has scored 26 touchdowns in 11 games. That averages to 2.4 touchdowns per game. You know what team made the playoffs last year averaging 2.4 touchdowns per game? None.

And it's not just that the Dolphins struggle to score. It's how they score that is also troubling. In a league that is all about electric, dynamic offense, the Dolphins look like a team straight out of the 1970s. They plod along, slow and sometimes steady on 13-, 14-,15-play drives.

The "chunk" plays Sparano is always talking about? Wait until next year the earliest for them.

This year the Dolphins have scored three, count 'em, three touchdowns from outside the 20 yard line. Three!

Don't blame the running game for this fact. It's all about a terrible passing game. Fact is the Dolphins have eight running plays of 25-yards or more this season. The passing game has contributed the same number of plays of 25-yards or more. That, in a word, is horrible.

For context, consider that Miami's defense, not exactly a slice of swiss cheese, has yielded 26 pass plays of 25-yards or more.

About that defense. If it's the fourth quarter, Miami's D Fence more closely resembles a swinging gate. The Dolphins have yielded an NFL high 134 fourth-quarter points this year. Aside from being an NFL worst, it is already a franchise worst.

The 2007 Dolphins, the 1-15 debacle of a team, yielded 126 fourth-quarter points.

So this year's team has already surrendered more fourth-quarter points than the worst Miami team of all time. And there are still five games to play!

And what does Pasqualoni say when he's asked about that terrible, terrible fourth-quarter performance?

Hint: He's not saying, Phillip Merling isn't playing like a first-round pick, Joey Porter gets sacks only when he plays backup tackles, Channing Crowder isn't making any big plays, our young corners are going to be good some day but not yet, our safeties were out of synch the entire first half of the season, and our front seven is slow to the football.

Pasqualoni is saying: "We've been real good in the red zone. We've been real good, to me, it's field position as much as anything. Just so happens that some of that stuff has come up in the fourth quarter, but we've got to do a better job of finishing there's no question about that. And we've got to do a better job of just flat-out executing."

You didn't expect him to put another hole in the ship, did you?


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I meant to say Hal, my name is Hal Im from Sunrise you stupid motha f'ker Luiigi, go cook pasta , slime ball.

Hal ? You must be jewish ? so go make some Motzo ball soup and leave this blog SIR !


Hyman you schmuck! My name is Cal, Hal was a typo you jerk. Hyman is your last name Roth???

the dolphins win the division and more next year if they 1.draft TE jermaine gresham oklahoma. 2.draft 3 inside linebackers and get those 2 stiffs outta here. 3.with the rest of the draft try a couple defensive tackles and offensive lineman 4.use any free agent money on a couple good recievers. now im done! youre welcome trifecta have a nice day.

Cal , go make some fried chicken and grits and leave this blog SIR !

I have little tid bit of info regarding ted ginn...if you google him you will read that he has admitted to a learning disbility where it takes him TWO TO THREE TIMES longer to learn something than it would take a normal person, so dont give up on him yet, if we're lucky we will see him flourish in his SIXTH season...haha

First off we don't utilize this team properly.

The coaches are to predictable. Even I can call their plays from the sports bar. WE never go 4 wide on O and on the D side we don't play zone.

TED,GREG,DEVON and BRIAN are better than JOEY HANOS and FASANO.Quick slants shotgun fast passes damn something.

All of their creativity went out the window after they stumbled upon the WILDCAT.

I am quickly losing faith with this Parcells thing. He wins a lot of games, but not playoff + superbowls.
Remember his biggest win was a field goal miss by Buffalo.
No play makers, leaders, and the defense has been a lie (and joke) since Zacks prime years were over.
The NFL is littered with rookies making a difference-Percy Harvin, 2-3 on Indy, same number on Philly. When is the last game Taylor, you know, made a tackle, it took Joey Porter getting benched to start playing again. Everytime Wake comes in he gets a sack, or pressure. They just played Marinos game in 1994-McDuffie, Fryer, Byers-no running game, but they beat the Patriots by a TD run!

Bill Parcells, first coach in the NFL to lead 4 teams to the Playoffs, 2 Superbowl Rings, every team he took over had horrendous records when he took over, each team made the playoffs within 3 years.. Bill Belechick one of many successful coaches that is a Parcells protege...give us a break David



bobbyd12 STFU little peep squeak

to be a true fn we have to be behind our players and coaches even when they suck .go fins

Wonder - do they resign Martin next year and not worry about TE much?

He is not elite, but he is much better than what we have right now..

I guess it depends on what is available when they are drafting, but linebackers and a solid NT seem to be their biggest need. Our DB situation will improve as the rooks get more experience and take over the unit..

I think that if they do sign a FA.. they need it to be a receiver of quality... Percy is an anomoly - we won't get a rookie receiver to produce like that in his first season.. and we don't have the luxury of the 3 yr learning curve (or 6 yrs for Ginn)..

Where is Patrick Turner???!!!!

I don't expect the Dolphin's coaching staff to tell me or you the truth about the team's performance...I don't expect to hear how great Matt Roth played only to get cut..non of that matters.
What matters is the "The Results on Game Day". They can't lie about that.
In my opinion the coaches are as much to blame for the mistakes in the basics of tackling, catching and running north and south as any of the players are.


i am in complete agreement ,our team needs a fresh start . i say hire the dan the man to coach henne and chad.p to coach pat white .

What's the matter Davey??? Facts got in the way of your ignorance??I love how guys like u make things up and when someone gives you the actual Facts u get all upset wahhhhhhhhh

Great article Armando. If Bill Parcells bolts, then we'll know that there are more holes than he can handle. I'll wait until the off-season waivers and the draft before I judge the poor personnel moves that I've complained about (mainly at WR). I still for the life of me don't understand why they haven't inserted Patrick Turner into the lineup, if at least to find out how he'll perform in a real game. Who knows, they might fill one of those holes you're talking about.

One guy on the blog here (slipscreen I think?) mentioned the lack of leadership w/ Pennington out this year and the void of not filling that need. I fully agree. The great QBs all had good leadership to go w/ their football skills. I'm a patient guy, but I'm looking at Henne and searching for his leadership to emerge. I haven't seen any evidence of that yet. I want to see a field general who is directing his offense down the field. He has to display that he is in charge of the unit, just like Marino used to do. Somebody goofs up on offense and he's in their face. Peyton Manning is a prime example and a great role model for other QBs to follow. "Knowledge is power" and that also translates into one's leadership. Henne needs to be a student of the game, of his offense. He needs to know where every "swinging Richard" is supposed to be on every play (on his side of the ball) to include everything he's studied about the opposing defense and each of the opposition's players and their tendencies and weaknesses. Once he gets all that, and a few more players, then he might be able to take this offense far. We shall see.

Thanks again for the perspective!

Next time Davey try that new internet intervention called "Google" before make things up and look like a fool

bobbyd12, what do you want for christmas ?

X-Mas??? More REAL Dolphin Fans on this blog who actually know about football instead of all the Fairweather, Bandwagon idiots like Crossdresser Marc...

I want 5 wins in a row for christmas

and you carlito ,that's all you want ?

i would like to know if bobbyd12 wants more fans or a small freezer for food ?

Wow, you guys seriously stayed on here last night talkin' about me...I'm flattered...Officer Boob, LMAO...putz

I'm putting out kitty food at the game Sunday hoping a P'U'S'S'Y named Marc will show


Go Dolphins!!!!

Run Ricky Run!!!

Shut your mouth, Porter!!!

Stop sitting on the bench, Smiley!!!

Get some balls, Henning!!!

Make some plays vs. your good friend, Taylor!!

Stop playing like a traitor, Taylor!!!

Coach the team, Tuna!!!

I almost forgot...

Tackle somebody, Wilson!!!

Cover somebody, Bell!!!

Play a real football player, Ayodele!!!

Stop being a girl, Ginn!!!

Stop holding, Long!!!

Block somebody, Berger!!!

Hit your receivers, Henne!

:) LOL

In essence, I love my Dolphins!! Go Fins!!!!

Just watched the 94' opener w/New England. Twice. Thank you NFL Network! This was Dan's first game back since his achilles snapped like a cheap rubber band. Obi-Wan could have been referring to him when he said "He's more machine now than man." A machine with a rocket launcher posing as an right arm. Point being we ("we" like I'm on the team?)have scored 3 TD's from outside the 20- after 12 games? Dan threw for 5 in this one game! I've also come to the conclusion Tom Ovil-idoit and Don Shula's loyalty to him is the reason some great Dolphin teams never went any further than they did. They had a Pro Bowlers at every position- Marco Coleman, B. Cox, Vincent, Gene A. and could never stop anybody when it mattered. I'll tell you one more thing and let I'll let the glory days go (till I make my wife watch that game with me tomorrow.) Marino was sneaky quick like a chicken. Think about it. In a straight line race who wins? Not the bird or Dan. But he could zig and zag through the tightest of spaces. Armando- what say you- who is the guilty party for the wasted Dolphin teams chalked full of talent?

Yep, great read.

Posted by: DyingBreed | December 04, 2009 at 03:45 AM:"
"I cant understand for the life of me why most Dolphin fans and sportswriters cant see how 11-5 and division champs hurt a team fresh off of 1-15 a whole heck of a lot than it help."
Didn't seem to hurt Bellicheat finishing in the top 4 all these years, AND somehow seems to come up with extra 1st rounders as well.
His GM did, the job.
By the way, we didn't set the world on fire on our 1-15 draft.
Jake Long is good, not great, Henne, good, hopefully better than good.
The rest so so...no free agents of consequence.
I think our team, while dedicated and solid, are afraid of taking risks on the Percy Harvin types, going for "safe" instead.
Great teams maintain their greatness whatever position they draft.

"That is all."
Posted by: That guy | December 04, 2009 at 09:38 AM
Thank God.

hey armando, merling wasn't a first round pick

I am NJ based DOLFAN for many years. I read this site almost every day and I always find it funny how us die hards are always hoping This Year Will Be The Year.

But the fact is Last Year was our Year. Why? Because Pennington played one of his best seasons. Farve and Brady were hurt. The Dolphins had a legit opportunity to win their division.

This year the stars didn't align for us. This year we lost our starting QB, RB, CB, NT...etc. Injuries either make or break a season and this year they broke ours. That's it folks!

If Brady gets struck by lightning today and somehow the Dolphins sneak into they playoffs, they would be destroyed. Just like they have the past 5 times in the playoffs. I'd much rather them finish 2nd or 3rd (as they deserve) in the division.

That would get us a mid first round pick, which we really need. We have several key voids to fill next year. We need (in this order); a #1 receiver, a young outside linebacker who can consistently bring QB preasure AND play the run (we don't have one on the team now), a quality safety who can defend the PASS, and a young running back who can last a full season to learn behind seaons pros for one year.

We get these 4 players added and give Chad another offseason to get ready and the Fins really have a strong chance to win their Division next year and beyond.

Let's hope we have a 500 close this year so we don't screw up the draft choice we get next season.

I was always suspicious about camarillos injury last year. If you research his quotes, he was saying he was fine. I also thought fieldler had to fake an injury so Ray Lucas could get some playing time.
Im still curious on the pennington and Tom Brady injuries and tiger woods injury last year. I'm a conspiracy theorist. I think Terrell Owens got kicked off the eagles and laid out to dry because he said that Donovan mcnabb threw the superbowl, which he did. T.o. Told the truth and they laid him out.
What is the real story behind the mike vick downfall? I would say research the first Thursday night football game on NFL network where the cowboys played the falcons and vick pulled himself out of the game. The falcons were winning and vick quit on the team and it was Tony romos first game after bledsoe got yanked and a star was born and the cowboys made an unlikely comeback with vick on the bench and Matt schaub blowing the game.

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