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AFC East playoffs live blog today from Foxborough

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- It is cold. There is fallen snow on the ground. And playoff football is in the air. As in years past, The Miami Herald will be at the NFL playoffs watching other teams play while the Dolphins ...

... Well, they're watching just like you and me. Actually, I'm closer to being in the playoffs than the Dolphins. At least I'm in the stadium.

I'm covering the Jets at New England today.

You remember the Jets and New England, right? They're the two teams that finished ahead of the Dolphins in the division. They're the teams the Dolphins must pass in 2011 to get to the playoffs.

So we should watch and see what the task might be like. There will be a live blog here starting at 4:30 this afternoon.

In the meantime, I would ask you to check out my Sunday column. It makes the point that Miami faces a tougher job in getting past the 2010 season than it did in the 2007 season. Yes, I know the Dolphins were 1-15 in 2007 and were 7-9 in 2010. And I repeat, the assignment is tougher now.

I explain why in the column, but suffice to say one of the reasons is the folks trying to turn things around don't have the luxury of working with the benefit of a honeymoon now.

Some extra things I did not have room to mention in the column that makes overcoming 2010 might be harder than overcoming 2007:

After four years of tooling and retooling and retooling again along the offensive line, the Dolphins have to, you guessed it, address the offensive line once more. They need a center and maybe a right tackle.

And they need to dump that idea of picking players who mostly offer position flexibility but no position consistency. Here’s a crazy idea: Rather than find a mediocre player that can play guard and center, how about finding a really good starting center and leaving him there until he retires?

The Dolphins need to upgrade the tight end position. Last year they loved Tony Moeaki and Dennis Pitta in the draft but couldn’t land either. They really must upgrade the spot this year or once again the red zone troubles that plagued in 2010 will haunt another year.

As I touch upon in the column, coach Tony Sparano, already fixing his rift with general manager Jeff Ireland, must broker a fix between receiver Brandon Marshall and quarterback Chad Henne.

Yes, Henne is very likely going to return in 2011. The Dolphins would be unwise to anoint him their starter and probably will not, but I doubt they will simply dump him. And unless an experienced, talented veteran can be added, it is unlikely any rookie Miami finds will be immediately ready to supplant Henne.

So you might find yourself with Henne under center in 2011. Again. Marshall might find himself with Henne under center. Again.

That’s not a comfortable spot. The receiver openly criticized his quarterback the last few weeks and in some cases he was right to do so. But Marshall never admitted that sometimes he blows his assignments and runs the wrong routes and causes problems that sometimes get blamed on Henne.

Both players need help. Both need improvement. And in 2011, both may be surprised to learn they need each other again.

Crazy right?

See you at the live playoffs blog.

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This is crazy. Neither of the two players who have scored for the Jets today came in the draft.

Sometimes being aggressive with trades or free agency pays off.

Why am I enjoying watching the pompous Patsies lose to Jets right now? Hate both, should hate Jets more.

Tom Brady's the best qb in the league until you start hitting him in the mouth. Roslisberger is like Joe Frazier, you can beat him to a pulp but the fight aint over until you knock him out!

DyingBreed - didn't you post you were gone until the draft?

What is going on? When was the last time the Pats blew a special teams play, and gave up a touchdown in the last minute of a half??? This looks like our team. Personal fouls..Turnovers.

Flat as in not making plays. Look at all the dropped passes.

steelers beat the ravens yesterday in c oomeback

the scheme defensive show today for the fat lady today versus New England has Brady out of control, let see if in the 3er.quater he can unlock it, but after the 2nd. TD looks more eye-catching how soon he will be able to do it if he can.

You guys notice Brady's staryting to look for the pressure first now instead of his recievers? Look familiar?

That's what he always did in losses to us when Taylor dominated. Once you get brady int b*itch mode(more concerned about the pass rush than his downfield recievers) even his accuracy when does have time to throw begins to decline. LOL...............

JT is just having a very decent game, as usually versus the Pats.

DB,

This fight aint over yet.


Brady's "best qb ever" conversation took a severe hit in 2007's SB loss to Giants after going 18-0 up until then. Last season he lost at home to the "wildcard" Ravens.

Now after a 14-2 reg season he's staring consecutive home losses to "wildcard opponents. The Brady legacy takes another huge huge hit after a loss today. The "experts" will begin to re-examine whether Brady's 3 SB rings more because of him or those great defensive teams of the era. LOL...........

Do not despair , Armando, there is still a whole half of football left.

Anyone else notice the Jets and Sanchez are all over NFL marketing this year, plus hard knocks? NFL seems to be very pro Jets this year, kinda like Saints last year.

A loss today and Brady drops totally out of "the best qb ever" conversation. After the 2007 "biggest SB upset ever", last season's playoof loss to wildcard Ravens, and yet another loss to a wildcard opponent in consecutives seasons. This time as an nfl best season record of 14-2.

Brady's now treading "BIGGEST CHOKE JOB QB EVER" territory! LOL..........

so mando you say that mankins might make it to the dolphins roster.... so does miami then resign incognito to be center and draft another guard or right takle in the draft

Pats playing right into the Jets hands by running the ball. Who wouldnt rather have Brady handing the ball off over throwing it!

Pats arent going to hurt anyone's feeling with thier weak ground game! LOL............

James, I don't think you add three OLs. I think you add one, maybe two max.

Why do people think the only way to build a team is through the draft. Most narrow-minded view ever.

Jets are proof postive; as were the Saints last season and several others.

The Saint didn't draft Brees, Shockey, Sharper, Vilma, and many others

The Jets didn't draft JT, LT, Holmes, Edwards, Cromartie, and more

In fact, they got all of those players for next to nothing while we stood by drafting 15 linemen.

This is crazy. Neither of the two players who have scored for the Jets today came in the draft.
Sometimes being aggressive with trades or free agency pays off.
Posted by: Armando Salguero | January 16, 2011 at 05:59 PM

dying, I think you're forgetting the three Super Bowl rings.

choke job? I don't think so.

Come on my little "foot soldiers"! Rally to beat the Jets-I hate you both-but Ryan's Hope must be crushed!!!

DESPITE HIS 3 SB RINGS BRADY'S CLOSE TO GOING DOWN IN HISTORY AS THE GREATEST CHOKE JOB QB EVER! LOL............

I fear Manning has a far more prosperous history of choking in the playoffs than Brady

Armando-can we get the Arkansas QB?-he looks pretty good-great arm

Marc....BEST post ever...you nailed it...the DRAFT is a hoax....teams are built via FA and many areundrafted FA's....

You get a 30 to 40% hit rate MAYBE in the draft..

Agressive FA work will fix a team in 2 years...

Jets are living proof...WAKE UP please..!!!!

Brady blocking

Armando,

You missed my post about "experts re-examining those 3 SB rings and attributing those more to the Pats great DEFENSES of that era than Brady himself. Brady's yet to win anything without a GREAT DEFENSE.

He's CHOKED with the greatest offensive team ever! He Choked against a WILDCARD playoff team last year. Seemingly he's also on his way to to CONSECUTIVE playoffs CHOKES to back to back WILDCARD opponents.

This time after a league best 14-2 record and looking nearly INVINCIBLE coming into the game.

F%^k Jason Taylor

Marc,

Why mold youself from the Jets or Saints? If you are looking for a role model, then look to the Patriots and what they have accomplished and they have done it through the draft.

I'm not opposed to FA but your core has to built through the draft.

Armando...If we have Henne as our starter come game 1 next year then we deserve to FAIL MISERABLY...

Can you get these FO people to realise that their conservative approach has got them no where...

If they like a QB...trade up....if we had of done that 5 years ago we wouldnt be having this conversation...even if thats ALL we achieved in a single draft....a QB who is good...thats a GREAT DRAFT....

Craig M....love his posts...but if he were our GM...this team would be 6-10 for ever....

So may obvious moves could and should have been made in years gone by that werent made....

Now the JESTS are playing in the post season....

The formula for beating Brady has not changed: Hit him.

JB, because the Saint and Jets have been in the playoffs the last 2 seasons, and we've had back to back losing seasons.

Marc,

My deal is Im only suggesting Brady's name disappears from the greatest qb ever talk after losing today. Still like Marino, you can keep his name in the best regular season qb ever conversation.

As far as Im concerned, after todays loss Brady can no longer be in top 3 of conversation concerning greatest championship qb of all time.

Montana, Aikman, Bradshaw you are all safe! LOL..........

NE is going to fu&k around and lose this game.

Build a team via FA....the draft has been a wasteland for 10 LONG years because we pick poorly...it may be possible to build a team via the draft but for that you have to pick well....WE HAVNT PICKED WELL IN 10 years or more...we cannot build a team via the draft...its a FACT...our drafts are complete wastes....very poor

Bigalfy, you are correct. But I am prepared for the real possibility it could happen.

Don't agree even a little DB...Marino is the greatest QB EVER! Ring or no. Ryan Leaf has a ring...Means nothing.

Marc,

I am aware of that, but I am looking at the 3 SB rings the Patriots are wearing and the consistency of them making the playoffs year end and year out.

I believe you have to go out and get the FA, as Miami did last year, but I still believe your core has to be obtained through the draft,

Free Agency is the draft in hindsight. Trade picks for players and pay free agents...

Armando....dont let them....itl be ugly....put the ORTON / VY seed in there...take a chance on VY...if we can chance it with losers like FEELEY then chance it with VY who may just be another Michael Vick story of redemption...

Henne will see us 6 - 10....again...no matter the OC

bigalfy, the only way for Miami to get FAs are to overpay them. Teams like NE get good deals because players want to have a chance to win.

Brady's Last 3 Playoff Apearances:

1. 2007 SB loss to Wildcard Giants
2. 2009 Wildcard loss to Ravens
3. 2010 Wildcard loss to Jets(TBD)

That would 3 consecutive playoff losses to WILDCARD opponents. There's no championship greatness in that. Those 3 SB rings are tarnishing at a warp-like rate! LOL.......

Ryan Leaf has a ring! What is this dude smoking?

Ryan Leaf: During his brief career in the NFL, Leaf appeared in 25 games and made 21 starts. He completed 317 of 655 passes for 3,666 yards, with 14 touchdowns and 36 interceptions. Leaf's career quarterback rating was 50.00, a very low number—the league average between 2000 and 2003 was 78.9.

Love you Marc. I was with you. And then you said Ryan Leaf has a ring.

YIKES!

Keeping Sparano is looking like a bigger and bigger mistake every day. The fins are clearly further away from being a playoff team today than they were 3 years ago. This regime pissed away 3 years and landed maybe 3 good players in all that time.

Brady to Gronkowski for 37 yards. The value of a good tight end.

Go Pats!

Vomit.........

Well, who was that crappy QB for the TB Bucs when they won, or the Ravens? Thought it was Leaf...They were a joke nonetheless and have a ring.

I have several rings myself. What's that? Oh, you mean SB rings?

And Brady is driving

looks like the defensive scheme has been unlock, like IPhone 4

hi daddy kins ;)

Nice Run.

Marc,

Had Shula ever gotten a defense and a running game Marino maybe wearing 5 SB rings right now. But unfortunately this game and the qb position is measured by the TANGIBLE. That TANGIBLE is called CHAMPIONSHIPS.

So I guess youre saying history should just bump Marino ahead of all of the championship qb's just because Shula could never get the right defense and run game to compliment him? That also isnt fair to all of the organizations that did do the right job in putting thier championship pieces around thier qb's.

Armando...I have been arguing the point that Henne may be the starter next year just by default. To many teams are looking for quarterbacks to just assume we will find a suitable, or better option. Also (IMO) quarterbacks that may be available seem like projects. Not the type of rookie quarterback that will be ready week 1. Throw in all the CBA stuff. Lack of practices, Camps,ETC.. and it is not out of therealm of possibility that Henne will be behind center week 1.

Remember that guy Welker? He wasn't drafted by the Pats either...

You are thinking of either Brad Johnson or Trent Dilfer.

Marc,

You seem like glass half empty kind of guy?
We have some issues that need to be addressed for sure.

Keeping Sparano as opposed to?

NVM I don't want to hear about Cowher or Gruden anymore.

Yes!


Vomit...

Puke.....

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