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Dolphins a loooong way from being good enough

The question the Dolphins were asking, the question I was asking, the question you had to be asking as the New England Patriots dismantled the Dolphins 38-7 on Sunday, was ARE THE DOLPHINS THIS FAR FROM BEING PATRIOTS GOOD?

Make no mistake, the Dolphins do have talent. Their defensive line is good and deep. Their specialists (punter, kicker, long snapper) are among the better ones in the league. Their wide receiver corps is one good deep threat from being outstanding. The corners will be good once they figure out how to catch interceptions.

But this game was such a total butt whipping, such a domination, that it had to raise questions about, about ... everything.

Remember the Patriots didn't play Wes Welker, or Deion Branch, or Aaron Hernandez. Remember they turned the lights out on the offense in the fourth quarter -- running instead of passing on third down, and running one fourth down when they could have kicked a field goal.

And still the Patriots looked like they're a great team while the Dolphins looked like a bottom drawer team light years from competing for a title. Understand that New England won twice as many games as the Dolphins this year. Twice as many!

And they're rebuilding. And they have three picks in the first 33 selections of next spring's NFL draft. And they have six selections in the first three rounds.

The Dolphins, meanwhile, will be without a second round pick.

Miami will have the No. 15 pick in the first round behind Carolina, Denver, Buffalo, Cincinnati, Arizona, Cleveland, San Francisco, Tennessee, Dallas, Washington, Houston, Minnesota, Detroit and St. Louis.

Can the Dolphins pluck a super star at No. 15 that will bridge the gap between them and New England? Only if that guy is a future Hall of Fame worthy quarterback. But those don't typically hang out until the 15th pick in the draft unless several folks in several NFL outposts are blowing it on draft day.

The point?

No matter what happens in the next couple of days. No matter who the next coach or general manager is -- be it Tony Sparano and Jeff Ireland or someone else -- this Dolphins team isn't borderline title ready.

They think they're close.

They think they're one or two players away. I believe they're five or six players away. And as we saw on Sunday, that's a far, far way from the team the Dolphins have to beat to win their division.

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as many of u know from my posts,every year i go to camp in davie for fin practices to get a 1st look at the team. i reported what i saw;henne was in no way ready to lead this team. all his plays were checkdowns and kills. he never took any chances and downfield throws were seldom made. there was absolutely zero chemistry between he and marshall and they never stood together. henne couldnt direct the team down the field in PRACTICE!!! I WONDERED IN PRINT HOW COULD HE SUDDENLY DO IT IN GAMES. i'm not sure who's fault it is so i blame the top man but henne, henning ,lee and penne all had a hand in it. henne was a square peg they were trying to fit into a round hole. a game mgr he wasnt. penne's arm was "gone" but was given 5+million plus to be a back-up?? it was mind boggling. the season was lost before it started. ps there was no commardarie between henne and the receivers;he only huddled with coaches. they turned him into john beck. pat white was a big mistake but could have been a weapon;ruined also!

speed can be gotten through free agency

henne reminds me of jack nicholson in that movie one flew over the cockoos nest....after the labotomy that is

Sorry but if there are guys who want us to sacrifice the future by trading up and getting Cam Newton and you think that is going to make a difference, then you just don't have a clue! I believe only one college QB will make a difference in the NFL next season and that's Andrew Luck and we don't even know if he's coming oout. I think Carolina is nuts if they trade this pick.

We will ALWAYS be 5 or 6 players 'away' with a FO that cannot evaluate talent in the draft. And just as bad, Sparano has shown he is unable to indentify problem areas and evaluate his own players.

Mando, I've asked before, give us a list of draft and FA hits and misses by this regime. Include money spent (wasted).

chemtrials, the large white lines are not made of ice crystals like contrails which quickly dissipate and in fact are actually chemicals or biological agents deliberately sprayed at high altitudes for a purpose undisclosed to the general public ... or dumbed down sheeple

ROSS, trade every pick you have to and get a real QB please

We are not making the playoffs with a rookie QB running the show next year guys. If that's what you want then expect another 2-3 years of mediocre football. I don't think you guys can be that patient. Most of you can't even make it through a week without hitting the panic button after a loss.

Craig, do you not think Miami's team is young enough to trade up?

So the big immature kids are done playing on the playground or field, the childrens game with funny shaped ball for the season, which has absolutely zero meaning or consequence to real life?


Yup
Period

Point is, the good coach in New England installed a "system" for his team, one that works in TODAY'S NFL. He used what Parcells TAUGHT him, updated it, and they've been dominant for the past decade.

In that time, Miami has squandered chance after chance after chance, and we're left pretty much the same way we started. Sparano/Ireland/Parcells had THREE years to at least put a system in place in Miami. So far, FAILURE. Being 6-7 players away from greatness might as well be an infinite chasm, because even if we get the players, there's no system for them to succeed in.

Parcells' prototypical player - thing of the past.

Size over speed - thing of the past

Trench warfare - run every play, thing of the past.

This leadership team DOESN'T know what wins in today's NFL. They don't deserve another year to set us back even more.

Dear Mr. Salguero


With all the bad things that happened yesturday and there was a lot of bad things this is what angers me the most........Channing Crowder laughing on the sidelines.

For someone with the privilege to play a game for an extreme amount of money to laugh as things go bad sickens me.

The man only works a couple of months a year for millions of dollars laughs as we fans spend our minimal amount of expendable cash to bring some joy to our lives...Channing Crowder spits in our collective faces.

Soiled :(

it doesnt matter how many great draft picks we get if the head coach is still in charge. he's the 4th best coach in our division. we didnt play inspired football all year;we played "small ball".

Betcha Glad Dolphins did not pick that bum, MATTY ICE RYAN 13-3 best team in the NFC for QB?

U Get That, Huh?


have a HAARPy new year

normaly when the best QB is drafted to a bad team. thats why they don't do well.

I'm on the fence about Sparano and here's why.
He has proven that with a talented QB he can win the division.

After Pennington went down last year he was forced to start Henne with mixed results.

This year, Pennington was not going to be 100% at the start of camp so Tony was "forced" to go with Henne.

Once Parcels saw that Pennington was not the starter, he flew the coop and vacated his office...this was very telling to me as you NEVER LEAVE A WINNER.

Henne starts and we all know the results and by week 8 he gets benched for Pennington...which was the best move Tony has made all year.

No one could have predicted what was to unfold next...high hopes turns to sour grapes as Pennington goes down.

...IF Pennington stayed healthy and we finished say a respectable 10-6, then nobody would be calling for Sparano's head.

Tony has been making lemmonade out of a lemmon QB all year and must be commended for his efforts.

...That's why I say Sparano needs a second chance to prove his worth as an NFL HC with a talented QB. Problem his, he now needs to find that diamond in the rough along with 15 other teams.

Reports out of KC is that Weiss will be available after this season. Get him out here - he will be the Mike Nolan of our offense - add a couple of big play threats - improved QB play (doesn't even have to be franchise as a lot of people here say) - and for Pete's sake improve that OL - they are a sieve - I've never seen so much easy pressure up the middle - and this team would at least be as good as Baltimore - NEXT YEAR!

Do we really need a "new" coach that took 14 years to make it to the one and only Super Bowl win in his career as a head coach??? If you don't have patience with Sparano you sure as hell won't get it with Cowher...Also, dedicate our off season free agent pick-ups and draft picks to our offense like we did for our defence and hire a Mad Man OC like we did with Nolan on "D"??? Sparano will sound even more like Soprano when it's said... "Forget about it"... Let the air out, relax and most of all Dolfans... be patient. Oh and by the way, Sparano sounds a lot cooler than Cow-Her!!! There's not any Cows in South Beach. Oh boy, I can hear it now... Ring your Cow Bells when it's 3rd and long for the visiting team...Ding-A-Ling, now that's embarrassing

New World order successfully not only killed over 5000 birds in one mile area of Arkansas, now they r experimenting with killing the fish

Oh Yeah!

(CNN) -- Arkansas officials are investigating the death of an estimated 100,000 fish in the state's northwest, but suspect disease was to blame, a state spokesman said Sunday.

Not all teams in front of us need a qb mondo. My God man, do your homework.

This team is about 6 players away, true.

This team is also a good coaching staff and a good GM away. The latter will be needed to find those 6 players. The current guy, well, his 2009 and 2010 drafts seem to show he's not the guy to do it.

Ireland & Sparano will not be fired

bottom line

Too much $, pal

The Seer,

You didn't read my post right....you are twisting my words. I wasn't debating which QB was better, Henne or Bradford. I was debating how dumb it is to be calling Bradford a 'franchise' QB after 1 season and a pedestrian 7-9 season and also after a very mediocre performance in a must win game. Bombs? We're talking about bombs being the difference now? Wow! First of all Henne's never allowed to throw bombs and secondly there were a few this season but it seems most of you like to have selective memory. Lastly, I'd argue whether Bradford is 'far' better than Henne already. Let's see how Bradford makes out when there are EXPECTATIONS for him to win, which there were none this season. He's already shown he'll swallow the bit in key, must win games. Let's see how he progresses next season under more pressure from the fans and media.

Tony will never get a second chance with any other team, so why us?

Why would any team hire a position coach as a HC when his area of expertise, the O-Line, is a debacle, and he has no coordinating experience and deferred to Gramps as OC to the point of insanity.

Nice Guy. Lousy Coach.

Craig M,

I think Kolb is a good QB but I would only want trade for him under conditional picks and no 2011 picks. So that tells you how much I want Kolb. I do like his limited play I have seen but wouldn't do anything other then 3rd or 2nd based on performance.

I agree with you on Cam Newton. I wouldn't trade 1st and 3rds and another 2 or 3 for him. He isn't a sure thing but I would trade up a few spots for him or Mallet (if he declares) if it was something like getting to 11 ahead of Minnesota at 12 because both Minnesota and Miami need QBs. I don't think the compensation from 15 to 11 is that great but nothing more then a 5 to move up which means it probably wouldn't work

The dolphins had nothing to play for, so its hard to say that was the real team. Here is how things look:
QB- need a starter, keep henne as backup
RB- need youth, re-sign one of two ricky/ronnie
WR- need deep threat
TE- need depth
OT- need better backup
OG/C- has potential but needs depth
DE- injured players will be back next year
NT- re-sign soloai & add depth
LB- need depth, misi will improve next year
CB- re-sign sapp or add depth
SS- solid
FS- need playmaker
K- solid
P- solid

Need new offensive coordinator and QB coach to help add playmakers to offense, solidfy OL. With Nolan as defensive coordinator, youth will continue to develop, plus we will get Merling and Odrick back 100%, just need to add depth at positions and look for playmaking FS.

One for year for GM and head coach to show improvement; realistically they are two years away from making a solid playoff run.

What's disturbing about yesterday is the Patriots had about 8 starters in street clothes and had ABSOLUTELY nothing to play for. The Dolphins, on the other hand, were supposed to be playing for pride and for their coach. Many players were quoted "We'll fight for our coach" prior to the game. They ended up getting smoked by a bunch of back ups, which a lot of them would be starters on our team. That's pretty disturbing. Just that itself makes you think why keep Sparano??

Mark, I thought Weis was in for the OC position in Florida (not sure why he wants to go back to college, but that's what espn is saying).

Miami Herald Dolphin bloggers

Save your breathe
for your inflatable date ...


The Dolphins Suck
Period

Every team in the NFL is 6 players away from being good. That's such BS...Gime me a break with that Armando.

Weis IS OC for the Gators
Period

Weiss is heading to the Gators...Confirmed.

Odrick back-----that's laughable.

Odrick = Bosa. Watch & see......will anyone here be surprised when Fins medical staff "suddenly" discovers that 3 breaks of same leg w/in short time frame was result of chronic condition that prevents him from playing ball. Watch next camp---you'll see.

Dolphins 15th in draft.

Recent 15th selections:
2010: Jason Pierre-Paul
2009: Brian Cushing
2008: Branden Albert
2007: Lawrence Timmons
2006: Tye Hill
2005: Derrick Johnson

Some good, some bad, some ok.

Again, I'd rather trade this years for next years. 15th is not a great spot to draft.

Getting Jim Harbaugh would be a step in the right direction.

Jim Hardballs ?

bellichek is so much smarter than sparano /ireland. he personally attended a gator practice to get urban take on future pro's. bellichek drafted 3-4 of them who are difference makers. in 2009 bellichek put out a rumor that the pats were interested in pat white. we burned a early 2nd round pick on white. bellichek must have had a good laugh.

I for one am ready to blow this thing up. They have no other choice on offense. They need at least 2 new linemen, starting quality QB, RB and TE and a speed receiver to compliment Marshall.

If Mallet declares and is available I am ready to do it. If that means no playoffs for 2 or 3 years then so be it. Miami has to find a franchise QB and have failed over and over. Look at Tampa Bay they aren't a playoff team quite yet but have a bright future with Josh Freeman, same for St. Louis with Sam Bradford.

As a Pats fan since 1960 having seen a lot I'll offer a couple of quick points.

Miami is a decent team with a decent coach, good defense, below average offense and special teams. A great QB would obviously help. Dolphins are in the wild card mix of teams--not an elite team. But the key is coaching. Belichick, IMO, will go down as the greatest coach in football history. One or two more Super Bowl wins and he passes Chuck Noll and compared to Vince Lombardi. You have to watch this Pats team for a whole season to appreciate Belichick's coaching, attention to detail, fundamentals, schemes, clock and game management, putting players in their best position to succeed, disguising weaknesses, uncovering his opponent's, taking away his opponent's strength making them beat him doing something else, having no tendencies for another coach to plan for, mistake free football, execution, a middle class salaried team allowing them to have a deep roster, and no loud mouths--just guys who play football his way.

Belichick is what gives the Pats an edge about every week. Miami needs that kind of coach. And there aren't many elite coach material candidates out there who can match wits with
the best consistently.....a Sean Payton, Harbaugh, Smith.

I'll lastly say this. Belichick can take the Pats and beat Miami yesterday, then next week take Miami and beat the Pats. THAT is a great coach. Find one and the rest will fall into place.

The Seer,

I'll remind you that Mike Smith in Atlanta has had no co-ordinator experience either and he was coach of the year two years ago and only lead his team to a 13-3 season this year. I know....you guys want to give all the credit to the players...Matt Ryan etc...it's only when our team does bad that Sparano gets the blame!

Mark in Toronto, Happy New Year to you man!! The word is that Weiss has commited to be the OC for the Florida Gators for next season. I don't get the move myself but that's the report.

Ok heres what I would do if I were the GM!! Sporano stays!! The players play hard for him. Bring in an assistant head coach like Herm Edwards or even Pennington!!
Make Penny the QB's coach!

Hold onto Ricky Williams bye to Ronnie.
Either trade for Vince Young. Our 1st round pick next year. A conditional one would be worth it. Or Carson Palmer or Ortan for a 3rd rounder. If all of these fail. Cam Newton needs to be drafted by us no matter what it takes. This kid has star written all over him. A once in a lifetime athlete!! Draft a young speed/ power back like Johnny Clay from Wisconsin in the 3 rd round. Draft a speed WR in the mid rounds!!
Sign a vet guard Right an left. Keep Incognito at center.
Trade Crowder for a 4 th round pick an pick up a troubled bit athletic LB from San Diego!!
Need to draft a kick returner.
If possible trade back for Ginn!! Stupidest trade Miami ever made!! Worse the aj feeley or Lamar Gordon!!
This will make us a top ten team!! Oh and bring in Josh McDaniles to run offense. Even if Nolan hates him!!!!

Henne is never allowed to throw bombs? I think Marshall came out and said he isn't willing to take chances down the field. Sounds to me like it's his decision not to throw bombs.

To those who thought Marshall was a bad pick up I say he's exactly as advertised. The first Dolphin since Chris Chambers with over 1000 yards, and that's missing two and a half games on one of the least dynamic offenses since the 76 Tampa Bay Bucs. What were you expecting 2000 yards? Of course he's a loose cannon. We knew that going in, right?

Thigpen is a much better then Henne not sure why the coaches could not see that.

He sees the entire field, is more mobile, and wants to make plays down field.

Thigpen made plays in yesterdays game that Henne would never make.

ESPN reported this morning that of the 12 teams in the playoffs, 9 QB's had the top QB ratings.

The one who stuck out as not in the top 10: Mark Sanchez who was at the bottom of the NFL along with Henne.

Rivers in SD was ranked #2 and missed the playoffs.

The common denominator is this: great QB play = playoffs.

WE NEED A NEW QB MORE THAN A NEW HC !!!!!

Craig is right about Henne/Bradford. Bradford hasn't yet showed he's the franchise QB (too early). Henne at least has shown in 2 years he's NOT the franchise QB. Could it be a blip, bad year, etc.? Sure. But who wants to risk ANOTHER season seeing if Henne is the one? Anyone? Crickets.

The person who DEFINITELY won't be risking their job on Henne is Tony Sparano (if he keeps his job). So all you folks that want to see Tony back, just know that will mean Henne is a backup at best if he's on the team next year.

But the team to watch this offseason is the Washington Redskins. Like us, they've sucked this whole decade pretty much. Like us, they've squandered offseason after offseason trying to get better. They finally wised up. They got a Coach with a SYSTEM, who will be installing HIS players into it this offseason. Next season will tell you if he's on the right path or not. That's TWO years. One to install the system. The next to get the players to make it work. Then just manage the system.

In THREE years, Miami has no system. They have players, with no apparent connection to each other (if you believe your star WR). Most importantly, they don't have enough FOOTBALL INTELLIGENT players to understand situational football.

Can that be fixed by the same guys who've had ALL season to change and haven't (while other coaches have been able to change mid-game if they're going in the wrong direction)? Maybe you think so, but I sure don't.

Dear Mr. Salguero

According to my sources Dan Henning has been piloting a tanker plane in south Florida and then a read this....

"Was tossing the rock yesterday out back in South Florida
Huge chemtrail straight lines and Xs 6 to 8 at a time stretching across Broward county"

Fire Dan Henning at all costs before its to late for all of us.

Soiled :)

for those of you how thinkd Newton wouldn't be worth trading up for. then you didn't watch Josh Freeman lead his team to the playoffs over the Saints yesterday. it was a thing of beauty

Why is Tampa getting better and Miami is getting worse??? QB play. Period......

For all the Kolb fans, one thing you need to know...He's not a FA. We'll have to give up a draft pick to get him. We don't have a #2, we traded it to the Broncos for Brandon Marshall. We are not in a position to trade draft picks. The best we can do and should do imo is draft a QB in the first round, Mallett, Newton, whoever...And sign a veteran like Kitna or someone else. Have those 2 guys compete with Henne next training camp and see how it goes. There's no Tom Brady or Peyton Manning available on the streets guys...That's wishful thinking.

Outside of Luck, I've seen NOTHING to get excited about any of the other QBS. There are red flags surrounding Mallett and Locker. You guys REALLY want to waste another first round pick on a guy who's a 'maybe'? I don't know what the answer is at QB but I'd more inclined to work on things internally than to mortgage the future. None of these guys outside of Luck would tempt me to mortgage the future. Fix the internal stuff first, focus on helping the offence in FA and the draft, get a bet to compete with Henne and get a new OC in here ASAP. If Henne fails again in 2011, draft a QB in 2012, first round.

We haven't "wasted" a 1st round pick on a QB since 1983! Yes, count me as one who is ready to take a chance and waste a pick on the best available QB at 15. You can put it in stone.

For all you fans who think Marshall is the problem, you need to wake up and smell the coffee. The guy had over 1000 yards receiving despite missing 2 games and he did this with the crappiest passing offense in the NFL. Give him a QB and you watch what he'll do. Marshall is the least of my concerns. QB is a WAY BIGGER ISSUE.

Thank you billjwja. That was the best post on this blog all year. Will it fall on deaf ears in Miami, naturally.

We are 3-4 players away a ilb playmaking safety and qb, rb

We've got to try and move up in the draft and get one of the top qb's. I don't care what we have to give up, but get him. With the exception of the Seahawks, all the teams in the playoffs have their franchise qb. Do you see a pattern? We have some talent, but if you don't have a top qb, you will never get over the hump. I realize it's no guarantee but they are rated that high for a reason...unlike all the 2nd rounders we've wasted over the years.

Phinsfan78

Tampa did not make the playoffs.

Count me as two who wants to WASTE 1st round picks for a QB EVERY YEAR until we find one. Better than WASTING picks on players who end up either out of football or off your team in 2-3 years. Actually, if you got NOTHING but a REAL coach, a REAL OC, a REAL QB Coach and a REAL QB this year, the team might win more than 1 game at home.

DC, billjwja hasn't posted anything we don't already know. Problem is, you think Belicheiks are that easy to get?? They don't exactly sit and wait at the unemployed office, waiting for someone to call...Everybody is looking for a Bill Belicheik. Easier said than done.

Tampa may not have made playoffs, but Freeman's a stud, the real deal, the non-Chad Henne.

If your argument is that the Dolphins sucked yesterday becasuse "THEY HAD NOTHING TO PLAY FOR"....then you should get with this football team what you deserve....If your of the opinion that "its OK to take a game off"....Then no wonder you don't want Sporano and crew fired....

If you don't demand better....you won't get better!!!

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