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Dolphins fire John Bonamego, promote Rizzi

The Dolphins have fired special teams coach John Bonamego and replaced him with assistant special teams coach Darren Rizzi, according to coach Tony Sparano.

The decision was made by Sparano overnight.

Bonamego was Miami's special teams coordinator since 2008. He was the coach most responsible for the poor play of the teams the past two weeks when the Dolphins had two punts blocked, had a field goal blocked and returned for a TD, and gave up a 103-yard kickoff return TD.

Rizzi joined the Dolphins in 2009 and had no previous experience in the NFL prior to that. Rizzi has been coaching in college since 1993 through  2008 with Colgate, New Haven, Northeastern, New Haven again as the head coach, Rutgers and Rhode Island as the head coach.

In announcing Bonamego's departure, Sparano called it a "tough decision," cautioned that "it ain't all broke," and "players also have to take responsibility."

There will be some changes with players also in the coming weeks although there are no specifics at this time. The Dolphins have used starters on special teams, including Tim Dobbins, Jason Allen and Cameron Wake.

"I want my core players to play better on special teams right now," Sparano said. "To be honest, if we need to put more starters in there, we'll look at that."

I recognize that some of you will view this move as a day late and three touchdowns allowed short. The special teams, after all, have struggled for years in Miami with last week's Jets game being among the worst of that.

In that regard, Sparano might have moved one week sooner.

But doing it today, after Monday night's meltdown which I described in my Miami Herald column as an epic failure, is better than nothing. It is a risk. Rizzi might not be the permanent fix. And as the assistant, he was part of the staff that authored the problem as well.

But perhaps he will oversee changes. Perhaps he will correct the issues with blocking schemes against line stunts that Bonamego clearly did not. I would start with Pat McQuistan, who simply didn't block anyone on one of the blocked kicks last night.

We'll see how it turns out. 


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Most Miami fans had unrealistic expectations when they got Marshall & Dansby. We aren't ready to compete, especially in this division. A lot of wasted high draft picks & FA duds have set this rebuild project back a couple of years. Aside from Long, Marshall, Bess, Starks, Dansby & Davis, everyone on this team is expendable!

We are getting COMPLETELY out coached on an almost weekly basis. I love Sporano's attitude but he & Henning need to be gone. Too conservative & too old school of an approach. The only team to win anything the way Miami is trying to has only been done once in recent memory, by the Ravens in 2000. Old school football doesn't win today. That's why Parcell's rebuilding projects have never gotten over the hump.

We need RB's, we need TE's, after all the churning we STILL need interior o-linemen, could still use an ILB etc. We will ALWAYS be behind the 8 ball in games this year because we can't defend KO's & punt returns, we can't set up blocks on returns, we don't have a dynamic returner. This isn't the special teams coach problem, this is a Sporano / Ireland problem. The talent isn't there to execute, period. Time to stop defending Sporano/Ireland/Parcells. They hit on a few players but they've missed on more and it shows.

It's time to start with a new coach & GM. Give Mike Nolan the reigns. Until we hit on some early draft picks, we are going nowhere. We need better talent all over the roster. We can't keep living with cutting & signing players every week, playing with undrafted guys or late draft picks.

Anyone who still thinks Miami can do anything this year, after last night, is delusional. With the remaining games on the schedule, I'd be thrilled with 8-8.

This team has no killer instinct, no swag, and no will to dominate their opponant and to me that starts at the top. I like Sparano but... Mike Nolan may be taking over next year.

#1 Dolphin Fan in Montreal -

"...throwing interceptions at an alarming rate"??? Henne hadn't thrown an interception all season until the final play against the Jets last week...trying to force it in for the TD with like no time left on the clock. As for the Pats game...the first pick was all Henne making a bad decision...2nd pick was a pressure pick and maybe he tried to do too much...then again, sometimes those risky passes turn into high reward....3rd pick, not on Henne at all. He through the ball to where Marshall was supposed to be...it happens. Bottom line, QBs have multi interception days, even the greatest of QBs. Anyone go back and take a look at Peyton's first couple years...how 'bout Elways first few seasons....How 'bout Favre's entire stinkin' career. Often times, play making quarterbacks will throw picks because they are being aggressive. Sometimes that aggressiveness pays off and sometimes it doesn't, but it's the difference between being a "caretaker" QB and a game changer. Henne is young, verdict is still out...generally takes about 5 seasons to really know what you have; just ask San Diego with the whole Drew Brees isn't it so we're going to draft Philip Rivers thing....what, after a couple seasons.

Mark anderson from bears got cut, we should sign him, young kid with upside---we need all the help in the world opp. Wake---misi is invisible out there.

NJRICH, I never said we should fire him right away and bring in Gruden or Cowher. That wasn't me. In fact, I've posted several times on this very blog that Miami should stay away from these big name guys. Look what happened with Jimmy Johnson. Nick Saban. Get a young guy who's a good technician. A Sean Payton. Mike Tomlin. A John Harbaugh. As far as Sparano is corcerned, I don't mind giving him the rest of the year. But respect him? For what exactly? I respect Don Shula. I respect Bill Belicheik, even though I hate the Patriots. I respect Mike Tomlin. These guys have proven track records. Sparano doesn't. And until he does, he's nothing to me. And Rich, I'll ask you this: Do you agree with the way they handled Jason Taylor? He's playing pretty good football up in New York. Do you agree with letting go a veteran like Charles Grant, who was having a great camp, and keeping guys like Baker and Dotson? How about Will Allen? And that Camarillo trade sure doesn't look very good right now. Sparano has his word to say on each and every one of those moves and clearly, he swung and missed for strike 3.

Im not giving up on the rest of the season but we need Mark Ingram in the draft and let Brown walk. We also need another savy pass rusher opposite Wake.

You guys are all so great at picking new coaches... Mike Nolan had a stint as a coach. He put up a whopping 18-37 record. But that's right, Sparano only has his winning record because of the talent on his teams right?

Wolfman, I never said Henne is a bust or anything like that, but what I did say is he better cut down on his INT's. He threw a lot of them last year. OK, it was his first full year. I never blamed him for the Jets loss. But last night, ST's killed us, but Henne throwing all those picks didn't help either. Interceptions do happen, you're right. But not by the bunch. We'll see how he does in GB.

It`s just Sports Entertainment, Man

We `re in the entertainment biz

Warm soup-belly Sparano has been ok but

Bring on "Chucky"

after all its only Child`s Play

The JT move no one can agree with. The Charles Grant move is understandable... I don't see him lighting it up for anyone else, so unless we have the worst D line in the league that seems like a good move when you want to get younger players out there to see what they have... one of which is your 1st pick of the draft. Ryan Baker is a guy who has had great camps and provides flexibility since he has played NT. He was resigned because of Ferguson's retirement. Will Allen wasn't gonna be healthy for a few weeks, but I agree with you he could have been kept on. Camarillo isn't doing anything in Minnesota and really would have been a 4th WR for us... we needed more help at the CB position then we did at WR wouldn't you agree? As for respect, you don't have to respect someone who turned around a 1-15 team in one season if you don't want to.

Charles Grant has signed on with the Bears. Camarillo could of been useful cause he's got sure hands. Brian Hartline so far sucks, he better turn it around soon. Devone Bess is clearly better than him right now. And more help at the CB position? Has that really been accomplished with this trade? Cause I'll tell you what, Sapp had a hell of a hard time catching up with Welker last night. Anyway, have a good day everyone, hopefully we can go in GB and come out with a win.

I like Charles Grant. I was upset that they cut him. And for who? Ryan Baker, Lionel Dotson??? Plumbers.

the whole 1-15 thing is So Overrated

now we r 7-9 a

and now prob 6-10

and we release some of our highest draft picks for
Absolutely Nothing

starting cast offs from other teams garbage piles that prove to be miserable failures like KR Smith and Bobby Carpenter shows more poor decision making

and like other blogger suggested Bill Parcells may have a solid reputation but
He also has been a crybaby and ran away from a lot of teams not giving a flying f---

just like he has been doing while sleazing around the Dolphin organization and keeping him self a safe distance from a failed project while collecting 12 million and answering to no one

Shove it Parcells and take the GEEZER and the rest of the failed staff with you


Charles Grant has recorded exactly 0 stats in 2010 and is listed as CUT on NFL.com. He had 4 tackles in the preseason in 4 games. Yeah I am ok with him being let go. Hartline was coming off a good rookie year and was the definite #2 at the time of the trade. Camarillo was slotted as our #4 WR at the time of the trade. We are not a 4 WR set type of team, so it makes sense to move him. Welker beats just about everyone.

Home...i tried to not think this way at the beginning of the year and I tried to give the trifecta a chance...but I agree woth you 10o percent bro...we need some major help

Well Miami Herald bloggers

It`s all yours
Gonna take 2 weeks away

Will check back to read & see if Armando responds to Cam Wake holding call being mysteriously dropped

and by whom?

but doubt there will be any response
or any response of substance from Armando

Enjoy the rest of the season

Home Out!

Yeah NJ...but welker was ours before he was forced out..and i bet camarillo makes that catch hartline missed hitting him in the chest...im just sayin...we let all these guys go to get a few bottom feeders. Im not hating on hartline totally, he is ok, but in that huge situation after a small fit on the sideline about an overthrown pass..come on homme, catch that ball for the first down!

I think hiring from within for this situation is a BIG mistake. What does the Asst. know that's different from his now Ex Boss? Also, "We survived Henne's first pick and the second wasn't that bad" ????? It should have been 21 - 0 at the half. Then one run back wouldn't have been so bad. Momentum is a lot of what happens and the Phins were grinding the Pats into the ground in the first half, but instead of stepping on their necks, those int's gave them life and it came back to bite us. All the People yelling about the OC doesn't call the right plays don't understand how play calling works. Henne isn't going up there with one called play, he has at least three options when he gets to the line. He is supposed to read what the defense is doing and put his team in the right option. Pennington is a master at that, but Henne doesn't have a clue. The OC doesn't do it all, the QB plays a big role in this. Why do you think Manning and Brady do so well? It's not good play calling by their OC it is their ability to read the D and put their team in the right option. That is what the league has evolved into. those with a QB that can do that thrive, while those that have one that can just throw the ball hard, do not. See Jeff George and Ryan Leaf.

Parcells is a thief. No difference between him and Saban.

Ryan Leaf is a low blow dude. Henne might not be Marino but Ryan Leaf is a Psycho!

Oh I will be the first to tell you we made a HUGE mistake letting Welker go to the Pats, but that was an old coaching staff and front office. I was talking about the Benny Sapp move in relation to our current staff.

i spent the last 3 years at fins training camp in davie and watched every practice as mando knows. this year we came away not feeling very good about the offense (especially the QB)nor the lack of veteran leadership. practice after practice henne failed to see the whole field. he struggled in 7 on 7 drills and in scrimmages. he couldn't make all the throws and didnt sense pressure. he didnt slide in the pocket to avoid pressure or an outstretched arm of a D lineman. he didnt see open receivers,he couldnt set up a screen or playaction yet he was annointed QB of the future. i have serious doubts about ireland,sparano,henning and henne. i like mike nolan and what he's trying to do. we have a serious leadership void at the top!






Granted Nolans first stint was not successfull but maybe he learned somethings from it plus that QB was a dud. I like Sparano personally and hope he'll get it turned around but this is year 3 for him and the team in my opinion went up against the two teams it MUST get up for and for whatever reason were not prepared. At home on top of it. And on paper i dont believe talent level was the difference. Experiance in these situations maybe but at the end of the day Bellecheck exposed our weakness and their only clear advantage and it worked.

I'm sick of roster flexability talk, especially from Sporano. I WANT BALLERS! What a crock of sh*t that line is. All it is, is an excuse for poor drafting. Guys find roles on teams, you shouldn't have to look for guys to fill multiple rolls. That means you aren't acquiring good talent. This Mngt team has been inconsistent at best at finding players.

What are all these flexible roster guys doing for us? Ryan Baker over Charles Grant? Grant has been a proven pass rusher in this league and still relatively young at 32. He is WAY better than Baker will ever be. He would be helping our Dline allot more than Baker.

Our offense line, which is full of "flexible" guys, is porus. We wasted a pick on Pat Mcquistan cause of his flexability and he is GARBAGE. We need players who excel at ONE position. Not a bunch of average to below average flexible guys.

Considering Sporano has an o-line backround, where is all the talent? They've been rebuilding the line for THREE YEARS! Long was hard to miss but how many other projects haven't panned out? How many wasted picks trying to fix the same things year after year? Until they get it right? The rest of the team is suffering because of this. WR & QB is the same way.

Aside from 6-7 players, this entire roster is upgradeable. That's SAD!

Side note, you know why the Phins play terrible at home? Because there is no advantage! I watched the game at home in PA and I see maybe 25% of the stadium in Patriots gear?! You know why no one likes going to Pittsburgh, Green Bay, New England or domes? Because those places have the entire stadium behind the home team. Get your act together South Florida and fill the seats with Phins fans!!!

Pennington can throw a ball as well as Griese, you know, the guy with 2 Super Bowls?

In regards to Henne, I think only time will tell. Sorry, 17 games isn't enough to fully evaluate the position when you're talking about a young NFL QB. Listening to many of you, sounds like a lot of folks would have given up pretty early on the likes of Peyton Manning, John Elway, Brett Favre, Drew Brees. Dan Marino he is not....but then, there can be only one right?

In regards to the coaching staff....if this crap doesn't stop quickly, just about everyone is on the hot seat, including Tony...and maybe with the exception of Nolan. If you can't get your guys up for a home game against a division rival going into the bye week....somethings terribly wrong there. It's not like we're talking about a game that was close and came down to one or two plays or anything. This was a complete embarassment. I almost called in sick today...just ashamed to walk into the office this morning.

It's getting ugly up in here, I see torches and pitchforks coming out........

take care, HOME! Home enjoy the fishing in Palm Beach and the women of the sand.Come back for Green Bay loss and more pain,okay.

we missed on alot of free agents and alot of early draft picks. ireland is not that good;sparano is a good position coach who is in over his head. talent evaluators and scouts must suck;bellichek went to fla. himself to watch the gators practice and drafted 3 gators who are great picks. we got fooled with turner white ssmith nalbone gardner and a long list of others. we shoulda had a legit QB competition in camp. henne doesnt see the field or the defenses.


It seems on 3rd downs especially, Henne is locked in. I don't think this is necessarily his fault, I think it's play calling. On almost every 3rd down pass last night, everyone was running routes to clear space for Bess. They weren't running routes to get open. 1st & 2nd downs, are debatable. But, I think he has done quite well up until last night. No one, not even Brady, can throw the way he did on the Jets.

He has what it takes, but alot of what Miami does is predicated on play action. We haven't been able to run all year so teams are really dropping into coverage. Marshall is probably double covered every snap so he already knows where he is gonna go with the ball because Miami rarely has more than 2 other guys in routes unless it's 3rd down. I think some of the criticism of Henne is unjustified.

I was banging on the sit Henne drum last night. I would like to retract that after a poor nights sleep. I stand firm on the opinion that this offense lacks leadership, in fact the whole team. We have a player in Brandon Marshall that is a freak on the field. It is inexcusable for this team to go a whole half without figuring a way to get him involved in the game. Sure it opens up the field for Bess, oan Fasano. But Marshall is a guy that can provide that spark of energy that gets the whole team going. The way Henning used Marshall in the flow of the offense was awful. The playcalling has to improve, Henne had a bad game, yanking him will not solve the problem on offense, I realize this. Some things I would like to see would be to integrate more players into the offense. How many plays on offense has Cobbs seen? Hilliard? Wallace? or Marlon Moore? Why in a blowout wern't any of these guys at least put in to give a chance to play? I'm sure we would get maximum effort from these players, something that this team desperatley needs in the upcoming games. The gauntlet is brutal, and after a great start, we have dug a huge hole for ourselves to climnb out of. Maybe onr of these players can provide some spark. Defensivley, after 2 great games, this unit has digressed. Injuries, and lack of depth on the line has been a big part of the reason. The linebackers, who played so well in games 1-2 look slow, and out of position. The secondary had a good game, but could not come up with big stops, or force a turnover, again huge factors in the 2 wins. The Pats yardage wasn't great, but you have to figure that they head at least 3 less possesion because of the gifts we gave them, once their team made adjustments(good coaching does that)they were able to move the ball, the crusher was when we cut the deficit 20-14, and they marched right back down the field to score, and converted 2 huge 3rd downs.

he wont fire his boy henning

they are best friends

this team is a joke

heat start tonight

Here's a crazy idea: Parcells should move down to the field and become the head coach - with Sparano as assistant head coach. Parcells is at the twilight of his career - and if the team implodes this season, that will be his legacy.

As most of you have said: the team has been consistently outcoached. Sparano is not experienced enough to coach in this tough division - so a vet like Parcells is needed.

I'm thinking Sparano has taken this team as far as he can go. If the team continues to flounder, I hope Mr. Ross would consider interviewing Bill Cowher and Tony Dungy after this season.

morono allowed that wild cat play to go through and that killed the first drive

fire morono and everyone

joe schmoe,
I agree that some of the criticism of henne is un justified but greg is right when he says he doesn't see the field. On the first int he forced it into bmarsh and if you look at the replay hartline was completley open and it would have been a touchdown if henne had seen that. Brown was also open.
on a sack that long gave up all henne had to do was move up a couple of steps. but he didn't. Maybe this is because he's young but as much as I hate sanchez he's not making those same mistakes. Henne is not our QB of future. We'll never win anything with henne at QB. If we're lucky he's fiedler 2.0

I should save all these posts of those of you calling for Henne's benching. Un believable. He's a young qb, let him develop. Remember Drew Brees. WOuld you take him? he was below average for years.

And Sanchez isn't making mistakes?? Oh ya, 5 1st downs in the season opener. henne has never been that innefective. If he put in that kind of performance you guys would be screaming like your hair was on fire on this blog.

david Veikune working out for Dolphins---we need help on inside and outside of defense----i Really hate dobbins---carpenter at least can cover---dobbins has no instincts to find the ball.

Inside and outside need help---

joe schmo, i guess we have a difference of opinion on henne. i've watched him alot in practices and games; this staff didnt take the cuffs off for a reason. henne to me is very stiff out there and probably should have been allowed to make mistakes so he could progress faster and learn from them. his handlers have made him a game manager where he isnt allowed INT's or mistakes. you can see he isnt comfortable out there. his first 2 INT's he locked onto these receivers. ninovich said "he looked right at me" and then threw it.

Horrible! Henning needs to go next!

Leadership comes on the field as well and they are not getting it from Henne because he is overwhelmed when he is on the field. Pennington is in command out there and motivates offense and defense and maybe even ST, but he leads the team. Henne looks like a goofball out there. You never see him on the sidelines talking up a player or his line or anything, he just stands there with the same blank look on his face. Remember in the preseason when it was noted that Pennington held the players after practice to tell them they were not performing up to par? Everyone said why Pennington, where is Henne? Henne is trying to figure out which way is up. This team needs a leader and that is Pennington.

our best QB is on the bench;tyler thigpen. he's very young and has had alot less practice reps etc but this kid can make all the throws and he runs like a deer. he will make mistakes because he is young but is really worth it. in camp he was a spark plug when he ran the offense. he will move the ball down the field!

Mark in Toronto- I definitley over reacted after last nights game. I feel it was a deserved over reaction, but done in emmbarasment, anger, and without clarity of thought. The pass offense was there to be had, it was just poor execution by the offense, and lack of playmaking by the qb. Yes he had a bad game, and he has to improve. Benching him right now would just add to our problems down the road.

penne really is a good leader and is a real QB. however his arm is shot and he cant make the necessary throws against good defenses. he can run a dink and dunk but our future is with thigpen. the regime put all their eggs in 1 basket(henne) and they don't want to admit a mistake at this point. henne doesnt seem up to speed on many levels. his throws are all late.

The coaching staff has been out coached the last 2 weeks..the fins could have hired bobby april in the ofseason but tony wanted his italian friend back...

we need bill cowher

THE NFL is becomming to hard to win these days ..the fins can be bad right now ..but in a couple of weeks .they can be sky high ..thats why the best coach teams are the ones that win...i like chad henne but he plays with no enegy no emotion..like dead ..like jon secada music career!yesterday day on nfl films they had a story on parcells love for the scool .MAMOUTH..and that he grew up a couple of blocks from it.now we know why he wasted the pick on john nalbone cause he wanted a player from the school to be drafted..




LAPhinsPhan - I could see your point about putting the Tuna down on the field.....if in fact the Tuna was still with the Dolphins. He resigned his position, I believe it was the week before the 1st game. He is still available as a "consultant" supposedly. He pretty much did what he always does....bail.

The weekness of this team are more obvious than J'Lo's "CAMELTOE" in her 2010 Times Square New Years Eve debacle.

Yes its true, one of our owners wore a body suit at 40 something trying to be like Brittany Spears. Up there ass jiggling sporting "CAMELTOE". It hits you right in the eye just like all the weakness exposed by the Phins this season?


You know what's awesome? We can whine about the team for TWO WEEKS!! Yes, great timing!!!

Bill Cowher will come in and give "Spit talk" motivational speeches. Oh and make good personnel decisions too. But he will burn out by year 3. He is a Steeler at heart.

This just in:

Parcells is going to consult for the Lingerie Football League...and he is taking all his old cronies with him! Except for Lawrence Taylor he can't go...nope that wouldn't be good.

Don't worry about the wolf, OBAMA will feed us all!


finally someone with a brain!!! i agree with you 100%. i rather be 2 and 2 then 1 and 3.

The team accomplished a lot last night...
They fed the Wolf, the fed him the ST coach Bonermango...


They fed the Stud, Pat Chung...

Cecil the Diesel where are you?

Wolfman: Parcells becoming the head coach was just a fantasy call - more to hold him accountable for the people he put in place, the direction he took this team and the free reign he's gotten. I have a lot of respect for the man, but if he's a "consultant", then he needs to consult Sparano and the team, instead of consulting to himself on the golf course.

TO BE or not to be

There is alot of season left but just watching the dolphins last night does not make me think it will be a winning season, like so many people have said the constant changing of players does not help the special teams or the team as a whole you to wonder what Ireland is thinking and by the way we had a good returner already on the team and for some reason we traded him, same thing with the pass rush, it has to be an ego thing with these guys they want to pick players nobody heard of before so they look like genious's, guess what it's not workin

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