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Thomas: Dolphins have to show respect

If a Mount Rushmore of Dolphins players existed, Zach Thomas would be up there with Dan Marino and Larry Csonka and a couple of others. He was a Dolfans' favorite player from the second in 1996 he stepped on the field as a short, no-neck-having, self-deprecating rookie to the day in 2008 he packed his belongings and left.

And to this day Zach Thomas remains a South Florida resident, a fan of the Dolphins, and someone the organization admires enough that it considered him to join the new radio team being assembled to work on a new flagship station -- the team by the way, would not consider me as a commentator because I'm not enough of a homer.

Anyway, the point is when Zach Thomas is peeved with the organization, well then, something is wrong -- not with Zach, but with the organization.

And Zach Thomas is steaming about how the Dolphins have treated his brother-in-law Jason Taylor (married to Zach's sister Katina). He's upset about the handling of the latest Taylor saga in particular and and about the way the Dolphins handle inconic players in general.

Yesterday on the Sid Rosenberg show on 560-AM here in South Florida, Thomas pulled back the curtain on how Jeff Ireland and Bill Parcells handled his departure when he was waived by the Dolphins.

"The only thing that was like a punch in the gut to me was the day I was cleaning out my locker, the day they cut me, [agent] Drew [Rosenhaus] asked them if I could just say thanks to the fans through the media at the Dolphins facility and their answer was, 'No, he's not a Dolphins player anymore, he's got to do it off premises.'" Thomas said. "That's when you know, like, 'Wow,' the whole loyalty and everything they preach with team and things like that goes out the window."

None of this is commentary on how the Dolphins make football decisions. There is no arguing it was time for Zach to go. He didn't fit the Dolphins scheme. He was getting up there in years. He was coming off a year in which he had concussion issues.

But this is commentary on what happens after the football decisions are made. A player like Zach Thomas basically gets kicked to the curb in much the same manner as Abraham Wright would.

After he was waived, Thomas had to find a way to say good-bye to Dolphins fans. He had to call media members one by one, me and many others included, to say his farewell to ... you.

That is wrong.

This regime doesn't like making exceptions. They like to treat all the players the same. The Dolphins, for example, are one of the few NFL teams that do not welcome new free agents with press conferences because the team doesn't want to make it seem like the new players are more important than the ones already on the roster. The Dolphins also don't get mushy when former greats such as Thomas or, yes, Jason Taylor leave are or forced to leave.

And that is fine if you're talking about Shawn Murphy being traded. But if Jason Taylor is being traded, that needs to be handled differently.

The strange thing here is that general manager Jeff Ireland is aware of how great players should be treated. He sometimes talks about how he doesn't want to do anything that would sully the organization's great name or history.

Ireland's stepfather was a Hall of Famer E.J. Holub. His grandfather Jim Parmer was a former Philadelphia player and Bears executive. Those men knew the importance of legacy and standing. Those guys respected those ideals.

But Ireland, under Bill Parcells, isn't really holding up his end very well in that department. The Dolphins fumbled on the Zach Thomas dismissal two years ago. They dropped the ball again in the manner they treated Jason Taylor this offseason.

Their football decisions were probably correct in both instances. Their people skills were lacking both times.

"You've got to know to respect great players," Thomas said. "You've got to know that. Jason is going to be a Hall of Famer. He's going to be in the [Dolphins Ring] of Honor. His name is always going to be in Dolphin Stadium, and that's big. And you know what, you can do it in a different approach. It might not be their approach. But I get disappointed when I see guys that have put everything on the line for the Dolphins organization and have a Hall-of-Fame career like Jason Taylor and it goes down like it has the last couple weeks...

"I'm not trying to be hard on Jeff Ireland. But he's saying it wrong, especially for a guy who has so much history with the Miami Dolphins. He's the all-time sacks leader among active players, and you're going to talk about him like he's a first- or second-year player. He should know how to respect guys that have been great to the game. ... It's fine if you don't have a need for him. But you tell him up front. And you don't go through the media and act like you're shocked that it's being brought up. I don't like the organization to look bad that way."

Here is a quick suggestion to the Miami Dolphins, an organization that thinks it knows it all: Sign Zach Thomas for a day. Hold the press conference now that you refused to grant him in 2008. Allow Zach to say good-bye the right way.

You can't do anything about how you handled Jason Taylor's departure. Right the wrong you did with the Zach Thomas departure. And do it soon.


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You are 100% WRONG on Ross. Bill Parcells has full control on the personnel end of things. He negotiated that with Huizenga and it's continued on under Ross. If Ross tries to get his hands on the football side of things, BP will be on a plane out of here quicker than the ink that dries on a contract.

YOu are dead wrong on this one, brother! And I don't want the owner getting involved in any of this stuff. BP gets free reign to do what he does best.

Cameron Wake showed that he can get to the qb. Hopefully he is getting better against the run and in coverage.



Is anyone excited about the draft?

I am for trading down, but would seriously pause if Earl is there at 12

Get over it! They were right about Zach having nothing left in the tank! I have no sympathy for players who make millions playing the great game of Football. Stop acting like babies and enjoy the fact you were part of something (NFL) that many only dream of.

Mando u hit the nail on the head!

I think when you look at the way things go down you also have to look at circumstances surrounding the events.

Concerning Thomas, we had just come off a 1-15 season after years of terrible business management. This group came in and wanted to change the culture. They installed a business like approach and part of that culture includes "everybody is the same" mentality.

They basically cleaned house and Thomas got the raw end of the deal. We were in such shambles that IMO it was very important for these guys to step in and let everybody know things were going to change. Thomas was an example of that unfortunately. Is it fair? Of course not. Zach is the man, but I remember what it was like going through 1-15 after years of futility and I will accept that drastic measures had to be taken.

I truly believe that once this team has been completely overhauled (and we are certainly closer today than 2 years ago) then maybe things will be handled a bit differently and maybe you can celebrate a player like Thomas when it is time to go. As for now, we are still crawling out of the pit occupied by Detroit and other continually failing franchises.

Hopefully we sign Thomas for a day this year to let him retire a Dolphin adn show him the respect he deserves. I expect that will happen.

Amen! Great blog!

This is more than sad. I am going to be a fan of the Jets this season. I am not going to be a fan of the Dolphin regime, who in attempting to be fair to everyone, have shown they are more like communist dictators. If Ireland was here when Marino retired, I guess Marino would have gotten the cold shoulder too.
There are players on every team that perform to a standard and achieve successes that other players don't achieve. They are special. They have out-perfomed all others at their positions for a period of time and represented the Team exceptionally well. Marino, Czonka, Duper, Clayton, Griese, Thomas and J.T. They have EARNED SPECIAL RECOGNITION. Ireland has dishonored two of these players, Thomas and Taylor, and for that, I will dishonor Ireland and Parcells.

Thanks for the memories Jason. Thanks for the memories Zach.

Sorry Zach, but respect is a two-way street. "Great players" should be shown respect, but not one of the all-time great coaches and team builders? I'm speaking of the way JT outwardly disrespected Parcells upon his arrival, and put more emphasis on his "budding" (term used very loosely) Hollywood career than the Dolphins offseason program.

He made it clear then that he was more important than the team, and he is once again showing his prima donna colors. This is just T.O. on a smaller scale..."I need to be wanted"..."This should be about ME".

Mando, I have to completely disagree with this statement of yours:

"Anyway, the point is when Zach Thomas is peeved with the organization, well then, something is wrong -- not with Zach, but with the organization."

Yes of course Zach is a special player to all of us, and he always will be....but he isn't exactly in an unbiased position here. This is more than Zach talking about how a great player should be treated, it's Zach talking about how his BROTHER (in-law) should be treated. It's personal for him, and football decisions aren't. Dan wasn't exactly embraced by Wanny when he came aboard, but at least he didn't put himself above the team and publicly whine about it while signing with a rival.

Zach says the organization should have been upfront and told JT they didn't want him...but what if that isn't the case? What if they did have a possible place for him, but didn't want to tip their hand before the draft? What if they truly didn't know if they needed him or not until the draft was over?

You can't tell me JT would have been out of work for the entire season without this Jets deal....any number of teams would have signed him after the draft. He wanted to be wanted NOW, and waiting wasn't good enough....now he can go play for the hated Jets and the most arrogant blowhard of all time because they made him feel warm and fuzzy inside. Barf.

I'm done talking about JT....he's yesterdays news and has been for awhile.

I'm all about looking forward...

Out for now guys.....

@Pic - Patriots game in Miami last year.

I agree Dolfan. I Think they'll let him retire in manner consistant with Dolphin tradition. That's a Ross issue, I think.

Please let us know when you are done with this so called subject, then I will return to you blog. Why all the crying over tootsie toes. Lets MOVE ON! Why are we not tlaking about the schedule. I have had enough of this B.S.
Not a Tootsie toes Fan




I agree with Zach the front office should of handled better and show respect to playler that have done something for the team, but we do need to move on and i wish JT well and will be pulling for him but we'll beat the jets this year..

lol, no true Dolphin fan would ever root for the Jest. I can understand being upset with the organization but to say "that's it! I'm rooting for the hated rival!!" You are a Michael Bolton and you won't be missed!!

Gary P,

You never were a fan. You should fit right in with all the piece of sht yet fans. F off and make your way to the ny post.

Any thoughts on whether we'll trade down in the draft?

A bunch of you guys keep talking about how Taylor is old news and yes he is. The point of the blog and ZT's comments where that you don't treat your future HOFers with a cold shoulder.

This may be a business but its not a normal company, this is professional sports where the players are the icons, you don't just disregard one of the few bright spots Miami has had in the past 10 years because he wanted to do a show or some other petty reason. They threw out ZT like he was garbage and they gave the cold shoulder to JT, both of these guys have been the only bright spots we've had in these long years since Marino retired

i do not care what all of you "get over it" guys say, JT and ZT are both dolphin legends and deserve the most respect, im glad these idiots handling our organization werent around for marino's final years or it seems even he would have been treated the same, sadly

i would really like to slap parcells or whoever is to blame for this right in the mouth

and as for JTs comment about hoping he can someday not get booed in miami... if you consider yourself a dolphins fan and you dare boo jason taylor you are ignorant, simple as that, i really hope he gets an amazing ovation from us real fans wen he comes back to play us this year, you ALL know he deserves it, lets show him the respect the organization refused to!!!!!


No, Jason was not able to single-handedly bring a championship to the Dolphins. With your logic, we should not honor Dan Marino either. No player should be honored or respected unless they earn a ring?

Many of the 11 years that J.T. played the problem was OFFENSE, not Defense. I know that J.T.'s stats speak for themselves.

Why can't a great player get a little respect when they are leaving the Dolphins?

Keep preaching armando. I am really upset with the way they are handling both of these situations. It is rediculous. Both GREAT players deserve better.

LMAO, what is a Micheal Bolton?

Taylor in the dolphinis ring of honor? Are you kidding me? He said good bye to that by going to the Jets. It would be like giving a congressional medal of honor to a soldier that defected to our enemy. No way. When JT signed with the Jets he took his miami legacy with him to new jersey. Hey I hope the money was worth it.

nice article armando, but lets stay positive draft is in a day---

My gut is sayn dan williams, but i want JPP---cant wait---if we trade back and add a early 2nd---i wouldnt mind grabbn, lupati in 1st and cody in 2nd---im not a fan of hughes, kindle, graham---everson griffen has talent but lupati has better value then any of those guys---b/c they are all projection 4-3 ends---and u have no clue who can make the transition to standing up and rushing---

Caserly on nFL network finally made the point about BG---that his production on the ground is impressive, but looks at him like Kampman from packers---a pro bowler in a 4-3 but he wasnt good in a 3-4, sum guys will never make the transition and its a guessn game---lupati would be a safe 1st round pick if we move into the 20s

Michael Bolton is a no talent ass-clown.

Doof, don't forget wanna be singer

How many Super Bowls did we win with Zach Thomas and Jason Taylor, oh yeah 0.

D-dense to answer u from last blog...I like Kindle at 12, Cam Thomas in the third...and yes, I belive the Fins will do everything In their power to trade down and recoup that lost Marshall pick...we won't know though till the first 11 are off the board though

D-dense, is that what those tapes he put out were? lol, and here I thought somebody was dumb enough to record two cats phucking and tried to sell it.

It's a day before the Draft and all we have to read is this garbage? Come on Armando...you can do far better than this crap.

Michael Bolton??? I wouldn't send my child in the restroom of he was in there

let me get this right? I am supposed to feel sorry for Jason Taylor and Zach Thomas when they made a combined $150m playing football in Miami. They will get their respect, deservedly so, whenever they walk through the streets in Miami and run into fans and see the wide eyed looks in their eyes. This no press conference stuff is garbage. They will get to say good bye when they're inducted into the ring of honour.

Dan Marino
Sam madison
Patrick Surtain
Zach Thomas

none of them got to retire Dolphins, why should we feel especially sorry for JT. Did he do more for Miami than those guys? I don't think so.

bobby, the question is would you send your cat in there?

The fact is loyalty will always cloud your judgement. JT was always gassed and he and Thomas were always being run on in the 4th.
Good big people beat good little people and Zach God love was treated like a rag doll by opposing blockers in the 4th when games were lost and believe me those dolphins of the late 90's and eary 00's were in close games abnd routinely choked in the 4th. Blame it on JJ who loved small quick defenses but didnt have all the pieces (translation:a Hershel Walker trade) to make it work like in Dallas.

The guy I respected was Tim Bowens who had a Wilfork like career and absolutely got no respect on losing teams while Zach hid behind him and plugged the holes. At least Zach always gave Timbo props. JT... ehhh ... and don't even try to put JT in the class with Danno who DID get his team into 18 playoff games (not 3) including the big dance.

Like your picks boobyd12. Let's hope something good come out of this draft. We have much to improve on defense!

FishyPete, this is EXACTLY what Taylor wanted, he is the center of attention the day before the Draft..nothing we can do, tommorrow is the day though

hey DontTradeRonnie:

"im glad these idiots handling our organization werent around for marino's final years or it seems even he would have been treated the same, sadly"

Actually Marino WAS treated the same way....he just didn't cry about it publicly while inking a deal with the Bills, so you probably don't remember.

If anyone that is within the Dolphins organization reads this, take note. Those of us that have followed the team for a long time understand the value these players brought to the Dolphins. We want to have an opportunity to thank them. Without the icons there is no reason to follow this team. Think about that next time you follow your "every player is the same policy". If you still don't get it , maybe we get Zonk to come down from Alaska to kick your butt.

sorry, retire as Dolphins on their terms is what I meant. And JT was the only one offered an extension which he turned down - so BOOHOO

Big Ben is being actively shopped for a top ten pick according to Sheftler...man, so much can happen in the next 36 hours...and please, let something happen with Smiley!!

If the fans want to say goodbye then they can do that. Quit throwing Bill and Jeff under the bus because they aren't making the media happy.I watched every play that Zach and Taylor made. And I am thankfull for it. But this is stupid. A Jet? If he is trying to make Bill and Jeff mad? Thats dumb. They could care less. And he is losing the respect of fans like me. I guess we are just business to him. And thats why I say good job to Bill and Jeff.

fisheypete if you don't like the topics on this blog, why are you always on here. You are getting a little boring with your comments, can't YOU do better?

If these guys didn't come to town then we would still be wallowing in 1-15 or 2-14 land and all the same fans would still be bitchin' but at least Zach would have gotten to say goodbye from Dolphins HQ instead of having to call the media.


Jets = bunch of old balls, has-been players on their decline.

Mark Sanchez loves the weiner.

Bobbyd12 any thoughts on Tebow. Recently read that Parcells likes the kid? If he's still around in the 2nd, do you think parcells would take a gamble a la Pat White?

"How many Super Bowls did we win with Zach Thomas and Jason Taylor, oh yeah 0."

That wasn't JT and Zach's fault.

"Their football decisions were probably correct in both instances. Their people skills were lacking both times."

Nailed it

"Here is a quick suggestion to the Miami Dolphins, an organization that thinks it knows it all: Sign Zach Thomas for a day. Hold the press conference now that you refused to grant him in 2008. Allow Zach to say good-bye the right way."

Nailed it again

One thing I WOULD be disappointed in is if the organization doesn't sign Zack for a day and let him retire a Dolphin...he didn't help himself today but take the high road here and do that...Just like when Taylor retires, costs the organization nothing and will smooth over the awkward ending...all will be fine, except Favre in Green Bay, that's going to take quite some time for that one


"Here is a quick suggestion to the Miami Dolphins, an organization that thinks it knows it all"

Gee Mando , that's kinda like how I feel about you. But hey , keep up the good work and keep them on their toes!

I dont remember any of the 1972 Dolphin members wanting to hold press conferences announcing thier departures. The ego of today's athletes is very un-nerving and Armando you are only validating it.

Shame on you. LOL

D- dense Tebow, no no no, after the Pat White debalacle I don't believe that Parcells will get within a mile of that...Personally, Tebow has the drive to succeed and at some position he will have a decent but not spectacular career in the NFL, kid is driven...IMO the Wildcat will be used sparingly, Henne needs to mature and be the man this year...The only other offensive position I believe the Fins need to concentrate on is TE..like to see Fasano moved back to the other side where he seemed more comfortable,

This is what you get when an owner gives Parcells carte blanche in operations. I praise and congratulate the trifecta for bringing in Dansby and Marshall. But their arrogance and indifference toward the media, players and fans are unnecessary. They burned JT TWICE - and yet he showed his loyalty and love for the team and fans.

So Mr. Parcells and Ireland: you better have a winning record to back up that attitude of yours!

It's a strange day in Dolphin land. I'm bummed about how they treated JT and Zach. That's worse than the Wilford and Wilson pick-ups in my opinion.

D-Dense, where does the FS come in??? That's a nagging concern it seems...

I'm now beginning to understand why we never won a super bowl with these cats. One defects to the Jets(Taylor)and the other whines on local radio they wouldn't let him hold a press conference at the team facility(Thomas).

Great players or no they both come across now like whiney little biotches and Armando you're sounding like thier Cap'n Savahoe.

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