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Coach talk of the day, but QBs are the thing

The topic of coaching is apparently a big deal in Sunday's Miami Herald, with one columnist ripping the idea of retread coaches while also applauding the fact Bill Belichick doesn't hire retread coaches -- and thereby forgetting Belichick himself was a retread when New England hired him after a fiasco in Cleveland.

Don Shula, by the way, was also a retread. He won more games than any coach in the history of professional football but the Dolphins recycled him after Shula fell out of favor with Baltimore owner Carroll Rosenbloom, who no longer wanted Shula.

Dick LeBeau was a bust as the head coach of the Cincinnati Bengals. The Pittsburgh Steelers recycled him as their defensive coordinator and he's helped them win two Super Bowl titles since 2006 and Pittsburgh has the stingiest defense in the NFL this year.

So recycling isn't so terrible if you put the right person with the right situation.


In my column, I tell you the hiring of offensive coordinator Brian Daboll is a Hail Mary by the Dolphins based on his history and the players he's likely going to have to work with in Miami.

Speaking of players, and finding players and adding players -- that is more important for the Dolphins to do this offseason than anything else. This column gives you names of a couple of veteran quarterbacks the Dolphins will absolutely consider this offseason, assuming labor peace is finally achieved.

Frankly, I'm not excited about any of the veterans likely to be available. Orton? Young? McNabb? Bulger? Flynn? Maybe Kolb, if you overpay?

Let us start out understanding that certain QBs are primarily West Coast offense types. And the Dolphins do not employ the West Coast offense. So I don't think the Dolphins will be hot in pursuit of Donovan McNabb.

Other QBs don't make sense based on what it will cost to get them. Kevin Kolb could be the starter again in Philadelphia at some point next year. Yes, the Eagles are apparently going to try to re-sign Michael Vick, but one does not get rid of a good player because you have another good player on the roster.

So the Eagles are approaching this with the idea of keeping Kolb, barring a significant and advantageous trade offer. If you are the Dolphins, do you trade a high pick or picks for a player as unproven as Kolb? Tough.

Kyle Orton? He was good last season with 20 TDs and 9 INTs. He has some chemistry with Brandon Marshall. He really does make the most sense of any veteran out there. But that assumes the Broncos are going to make him available. That assumes the price for acquiring him is not outrageous in Miami's view. That assumes much desperation by the Dolphins ...

... well, I guess he's a fit.

Carson Palmer? ESPN reported today he will ask to be traded from the Bengals. He will apparently threaten retirement if he isn't traded. The Bengals may be open to trading him, but again, the price is not going to be a bargain. Also, what has Carson Palmer won in the NFL?

This column also makes the point that adding a vet is not the only order of the day for Miami. The fact is the April draft is likely to come before a labor peace is forged. And so teams will go into the draft assuming they must address their needs in that draft without the benefit of a certain free agency ahead.

In the past, free agency came first, then the draft, then the remnants of free agency. Teams went for it in free agency, fill in with the draft where free agency failed them, and then filled in further with the last vestiges of free agency.

This time, if free agency is delayed as expected, teams will hit the draft as their first and best hope for soliving problems. And so, should the Dolphins take this approach, they will be adding a quarterback in the draft.


No idea. You know the names. Cam Newton, Ryan Mallet, Jake Locker, Blaine Gabbert. The Dolphins will look at all of them.

Hopefully they pick the right one ... this once.

[BLOG UPDATE: I'm in Pittsburgh today covering the AFC Championship game. We'll have a live blog of the game when it begins at 6:30.]


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Thank you for reading the depth chart, counting the QB's we have under contract (Henne) and then letting us know that we have to add 2 QB's just to fill out the depth chart.

Mallet was Henne's backup at Michigan and transferred when RichRod showed up to run spread offense.

Must give DaBoll a chance. Also should draft a QB and sign a veteran.

When Stephen Ross said, "... he's not interested in running the ball 4 yards in a cloud of dust like they do up north..." wasn't that his way of saying he wants to see more of a west coast type offense?

By the way who are the starters on the OL?
Long, Incogs, McQuistan and who else? Wait is Incogs still under contract?
If not we have the best LT in the game and a guy who was selling sneakers at Footlocker the day before the Phins signed him and made him an immediate starter.

Orton, Mallet, Newton etc should all thrive behind that OL.

At some point the FO will settle on a quarterback. Either by free agency, trade or the draft. Anyone of them will surely get ripped apart by some, and appluaded by some who will know doubt take credit. There is no perfect option in this scenario. All of these quarterbacks when put under the microscope look to be a little flawed. So it is almost a game of Russian Quarterback Roulette. Hopefully we don't get killed picking the wrong guy.

we need a new head coach and qb period... Anyone defending the fist pumper for FGs sparano and im too dum to make basic decisions henne have not watched them in action! I really do dislike sparano!! Any coach that gets fired up when his team stalls on offense and kicks field goals is unacceptable from a COMPETITIVE standpoint! The fact that he did it all season while watching us suck on offense he should have been fired immediately after the pats game!! Hey mando has anyone ever asked sparano why he fist pumps for FG's I would love to hear his honest answer cause im stumped!!! lol

And the robot henne he is the most unaccurate passer i have ever seen other than pat white lol It just something about him that says i dont have IT! We all know his mechanical problems staring down receivers, over and underthrowing, INTs, making dum decisions over and over again! But what ticks me off with henne is he was doing this stuff last year had ample time to improve and still came this year with the same stuff even worse!!

In my opinion hennes issues fundamentally are not coachable which means he is what he is less than average QB! I know sparanos conservative playing not to lose approach hurt henne more but its no excuse for his constant consistent F UPS!! When we get a competitive coach not conservative like morono and just an accurate literate qb it will improve the team at least 75% mark my words!

Carson Palmer will demand a trade from the Bengals, according to ESPN's Chris Mortensen.

Carson Palmer will demand a trade from the Bengals, according to ESPN's Chris Mortensen.

Sorry for the double post.

Armando....Good news. Pittsburgh finally has a quality hotel... A Fairmont. Go use up some Presidents Club points and get yourself an upgrade!!!! No more Westin. That place was a dump.

Anyway I'm going to go make some money before the game(s).

I just can't root for the Goliath (Steelers) against David (Jets).



I would like the Raiders trade you mentioned last blog...

Henne for McFadden and get Orton via trade first but, I don't think the Raiders would go for it.

Even with Al Davis being 400 years old, he still has enough upstairs to know that would be a win for the Fins.

Plus Robo-Henne's 40 time wouldn't meet the rigid speed standards the Raiders hold so dear. lol.

I would settle for wrangling Orton from Denver. I would bet dollars to doughnuts that he would win a fair QB battle over Henne.


I think we need to let the fist pump thing rest.

We need to sighn a hungry proven QB. McNabb and Young seem like sure things. I would go for the hail marry and sign Linehert also.

This draft needs to be spent fixing the O-line, and RB spot. We dont have a 2nd so you really need to trade down, but if not you get the best RB in first, 3rd best o-lineman/TE, 4 best o-linemen or speed receiver for kickoffs. You are not supposed to draft for kickoff returners so you probably should get next best o-line, then the rest of the draft is best players on the board. We can't forget our special teams need a ton of help.

Go Dolphins, Time for the real fans to start supporting, This is our team deal with it or go root for the Steelers, Cowboys, or Patriots they always seem like the best bandwagon.

I say it would be a draw.

Daboll gets my vote witheld initially as he is not Henning.

Actually it was Henning that said it best. He said something to the effect that he didn't feel that he was the sole problem and it would be reflected if he left. Now we will find out if Hennings schemes and play calls were to blame "IF" we have football in 2011.

From a statistical ranking anyways as each year has different players and chemistry.

Seems it will be hard to get worse.


Go Steelers.


It would make for an interesting trade for sure.

I would like it but it's hard to get those upper eschelon trades done player for player. I think both regimes would be afraid of the backlash should they get the short end of the stick.

I'm all for the Orton pick up as I think he is the least warty QB out there.

Are you for or against VY as a second vet qb choice?


looks like alot of mock drafts have miami taking gabbert


You're absolutely right. LeBatard's column didn't make any sense.

What are your thoughts on Carson Palmer? Can he be had for a 3rd rounder?

I think Orton would be the best Vet Fit for us.

However like you saidI don't know if Denver would go for that.

If we can get him reasonably then great.

If a decent QB pick is available come draft day they should get him.

Otherwise a trade down to pick up a #2 pick makes more sense.

Either way I'm not convinced we're going to field a team that gets to the playoffs.

I would go after Carson Palmer if possible and I like Orton hey maybe we could through scared Henne in the trade

no way u give up a third rounder for palmer. that would leave us with one pick till middle of the 4th rd

Can't see going for Orton, maybe Palmer, but none of the others. Why burn a year with a stop gap QB? We either draft one high this year or next year and go with that. If a vet comes cheap enough, then maybe, but don't see them paying up much for an ordinary QB or one who is at the end of his career.

My straight forward "Operation QB Competition" plan would be...

#1 Get a Vet QB. (moral imperative if Tony and Ireland plan to stay long term) My choices in order...

Orton: Cagey Vet, has BM repatoire already, good TD to Int ratio, has more "IT" factors than Henne imho

VY: Has crazy physical gifts, has already won in the NFL, feet can buy time and hide some Oline flaws.

Flynn: Has flashed some really good play. Should be much cheaper than trying to get at Kolb. Learned under a great system so would have a lot to offer from a "here is what worked in GB standpoint".

Kolb would be too expensive and I am not totally sold on him being an answer yet.

Second half of "Operation QB Comp"...

Draft a groomer QB. If we get a VET QB I would NOT use our 1st round pick on a QB.

I would be stoked if the tabbed QB Colin Kaepernick from the Wolfpack of Nevada. Big guy 6'6", 230lbs. Mobile guy 4.5 40. Accurate on the run. Nice TD 81 to Int 23 ratio. Got better every year and red shirted so he has lots of college exp. Threw for almost 10,000 in college. He will have to work on his drops and reads but there is a ton to work with in this guy.



The thing that factors most heavily in my opinion is teh short leash that Sparano and Ireland would be on.

They have to be competitive right away or the natives will be much more restless then they already are next year.

I think desperation causes the Vet QB grab.

On the flip, if they tab a 1st round QB they may not be around to reap the rewards before the grooming is done.

0x80 sad part is we will burn a year with a vet qb with no future here cause the clowns running this operation know they have to win now.

Rob, your QB operation is flawed.

Unless there is a new labor agreement, no team can add, divide or multiply any veteran QB that is currently the property of another team.

You can't do that until the new league year opens and owners are expected to lock out and shut operations on that date. So no trades, no free agency. Only the draft.

Obviously, that changes with a labor deal. But as of right now, that doesn't look likely anytime soon.

Rob - I totally agree...Ross's off season antics really put them in a bind. Its really a catch 22 practically no win situation for Sparano at this point. It will be interesting to see how things play out.

Ireland & Sparano better hit a grand slam with their 1st pick in April. They better do their homework and hope they don't blow it. If blown the fan base will dissapear quickly. You will have blackouts on home games. Mr.Ross will loose $$$$$$ that won't make him happy. The thing about the Dolphins so far this year is that they are the same except for some new coaches. It's really a smoke screen they have pulled on us. The combo of Ireland & Sparano will be running the draft. Henne is still the # 1 QB. So we are left to see what they will do. Is Deja vu all over again.


Eee Too Brute`! LOL

Good ta hear from ya bud.

Thanks for the wrench in ma master plan. As an optimistic guy I would say the gazillionaire owners and the NFLPA figure out how NOT to derail the money train.

It is probably a tad Pollyanna of me to think that greed will not louse things up.

My best guess right now is partial 2011 season after the NFLPA decertifies.

Cheers Armando!

How about this.
Trade our #15 pick for someone's 2nd round pick this year plus their 1st and 2nd round pick for next year.
We sign the best vet QB option this year.

We would end up with the same number of draft picks this year anyway. But next year we would have two 1st and two 2nd rounders. If we are still high on QB Luck, we would have picks to bundle to trade up and get him.

I might be just dreaming, but, what the heck.

Mando, what about trades during the draft (if the CBA isn't agreed to)? Can you trade picks only? I'm assuming you can't trade players for picks, but not sure about picks for say current/future picks.

"Operation QB part deux"

Labor peace stays loused up. As Armando points out the Vet QBs frozen where they are.

Go through draft.

I would say Gabbert would be the QB I would heavily lean towards should he tumble to 15th. I believe he will be taken prior AND I am still not convinced that the Bifecta will choose to delve that early into the talent pool due to the pressure on them to win now.

A pick with more immediate impact is on their wish list I bet. 'Less Ross is whipsering how exciting a Cam Newton is for selling tix I don't see a QB for their first pick especially with no second.


fred, doubt Ireland's/Sparano's short-term interests are met trading for draft picks next year. This team doesn't show marked improvement, and there's likely is NO next year for this staff.

I say GB vs Pitt in the bowl

bill_c - Yeah, that is a problem, this organization really dug themselves into a hole. Bad timing really. All indications are they will burn another year before getting back on track.

Rob, I agree with you (about the win-now strategy). That's why I think there's absolutely, positively NO chance they take a LB in the 1st-round. This will be an offense-heavy draft. I'm on record not wanting any 1st-round linemen (IMO we need a player that can score TDs, not help someone else score them), but IF they did, I can almost guarantee it will be an offensive lineman (not a 3-4 LB).

cowkilla, can't be those teams. How else will posters here who believe you can win without elite QBs in today's NFL be able to be right?

Mallet was Henne's backup at Michigan and transferred when RichRod showed up to run spread offense.

Yeah so what is your point. Mallet was a freshman (and he redshirted that year) and Henne a senior who had been starting the previous 3 years. I don't understand how this is relevant.

Best thing Daboll said is he's going to move the "skill position" talent around in formations to create mismatches.


It's about time we joined the rest of the NFL realizing mismatches create big plays. That would be a refreshing change from the exact same formation play after boring vanilla play.

Maybe we should take an online poll
Let the fans pick!
How exciting would that be guys?

Duh, doh, ahhh

Duhphan 77

DC - This regime can't draft a QB this year and expect any contribution. So my question really is what should they do with the 15th pick. IMHO there would not be any worthwhile player at that spot since taking a QB won't save their here and now. I would think they would want to move down in the draft anyway. That's under the assumption they are making moves to assure a playoff spot this year.
I know Rob in OC mentions taking a LB but I can't see them doing that when offense was so terrible.

fred, though I normally prefer to take higher talent rather than trading back, it might make the most sense this year after all.

My choice of all the picks would be to get A.J. Green, but he'll be gone by 15 (and trading up that high will cost too much). I'm not an Ingram guy, I think he's basically a younger Ronnie Brown. I like Ryan Williams, from Va Tech, but I don't think he's worth 15.

And, like I said, I doubt Ireland wants to wait to develop a QB. Thing is, other than QBs, most of the top players are on defense (or o-linemen). And I think the pressure to improve the offense will make drafting those players difficult.

If they thought Pouncey with Long, Carey, Incognito and someone else would guarantee a 1,000 yd. RB AND time for a QB to make their reads, then they should take the heat and take him (and if what they think comes true, no one will use that draft pick against them end of season).

The Dolphins HAVE to take a look at the Carson Palmer possibility. He is not a top 5 QB only because he does not have the team around. He's got the make-up, the arm, the big-play ability to be a franchise quarterback. I know he is not that young anymore but I would take him over ANY of the quarterbacks listed here. I am really impressed with Carson Palmer's entire body of work.

Hey DC,

I agree with you as well the position that the Bifecta find themselves in does not lend itslef to any long term thinking draft strategies. Oline may be an option due to the lack of proper bodies to protect and open holes. Also a lack of skill players that warrant a 15th overall grade.

The sad thing is there really are no RB's that are sure fire first round talents imho. There are a lot of peeps that believe that Ingram is the answer at 15. I am NOT with that logic. Ingram was on a stellar team and is not a break away threat at all. Me personally, I doubt Ingram would have had much different luck if he had the same carries behind our line last year than Ronnie or Ricky.

I guess my OLB Von Miller suggestion has more to do with me believing he is a worthy 15th (BPA) pick and would have impact right away (as in helping alieviate the double teams and chip blocks on Monster Wake). Miller has the kind of aggresive athletic pass rush to create quite a pinser movement with Wake one side and Miller on the other. Misi is there now and he is a decent player but not a pass rush demon for sure. Misi has a little more bulk and stoutness at the point of attack but, I don't think Misi's pass rush arsenal is anything close to Millers.

I think it will be a mute point as I do believe that someone in front of the Fins will nab the OLB Von Miller.

I would love to see the Fins trade back and gain extra 2nds thru 4rths. Gotta get that dance partner though and it can be tough in the smoke filled NFL draft bar.


cowkilla agreed @ 2:40.

Seen a ton of parity this year so lets see how this thing shakes out...


DC nice post @ 3:12!

who cares! this GM & HC combination is a bust! And that fat fake mob clown parcells is a rat who was giving advice to division rivals while under contract with the Phins!

Rob, your strategy is the right one (and one Ireland said he'd use, pick the best player available at that spot). Now, does he have the confidence he can find offensive weapons later on in the draft to pick a defender first? I dunno. Offense has so many holes it needs filled, and with the CBA making FA a dicey option after the draft, Ireland might have to bite the bullet and pick the best "offensive" player available at 15 (or whatever it'll be if we trade back).

why not just hire that fat clown Dan Lebastard to clean up this mess!

I'm not an Ingram at 15th guy either. He's more value later say 25 thru 30. A solid pulling guard or center at 15 if they stand pat.

First of all, IMO, our former qb coach was horrible with all 3 of our young qb's(Henne, Thigpen, and White). Chad Pennington was already a fully developed 10yr vet when he arrived.

So who's to say what can or cannot be done by Daboll to improve Henne. Im sure he'll be watching LOTS of offseason tape on both Henne and Thigpen to make decision on what's salvageble or unsavageble, correctible or uncorrectible.

This will be the launching point of where it all begins. If we have to pay a heavy price for a retread qb, it means after hundreds of hours watching tape Daboll has established Henne's totally unsalvageble and will likely be shopped for a low round draft pick or cut.

But none of these moves can be made until a complete and totally exhausted overall evaluation of Chad Henne is accurately made. The last thing they wanna do is dump Henne and have him show up as starting qb in a SB 2-3yrs down the road in position to lead his new team to victory. While we are still trying to address our qb position.


Daboll will watch tons of tape on Henne too see what the crital flaws are. If he feels he can work with and coach him out of these flaws then Henne is salvageble.

Henne hasnt been absolutely fall on your face awful but does have some critical flaws that need addressing. Maybe DAVID LEE just wasnt the man for the job. Lee failed to developed all THREE young qb's here in Miami.

I disagree that we absolutley have to take an offensive player at 15. Like DC, and Rob said. If we go with the strategy BPA, and that player happens to be a defender should we pass? I have made the point that the defense is much closer to being a dominate unit then the offense. I have also said that although greatly improved. The defense was a little fraudulant last season. Especially against top offenses(minus the GB game) Why not finish the puzzle on defense if the opportunity presents itself. At least then we have an identity as a team moving formward. It is much easier to finsh building a house(defense)then constucting a skyscraper(offense). Just a different thought.

If I had my druthers I would find a way to lasso two of these 4 players. I would say these 4 guys can be labeled playmakers. I am just not sure if the Bifecta can come unstuck on the whole "You must be this tall and big to ride this ride" mantra or if that was BPs hard fast rule.

These 4 are quick, shifty, speedy, go the distance, game changer types. Hard to say which rounds they go in prior to the combine and the all important stop watch 40 time, look good in shorts, what's my Vonderlicht score portion of the the old human flesh swap meet.

RB Oklahoma State, Kendall Hunter 5'8" 197lbs
RB West Virginia, Noel Devine 5'8" 180lbs

WR Troy, Jerrel Jernigan 5'9" 193lbs
WR Kentucky, Randall Cobb 5'11" 190lbs

I would be more than satisfied that the Bifecta tried to add sufficient team speed with any two of those players.

These guys all have fantastic movement skills and can make people miss. They also have the speed to make the screen plays, dump offs, drag routes etc become deadly. Contributions on ST would be a Double Pay day.

If Henne ends up being are guy in 2011 at least let his myriad of check downs go to a player capable of ripping off 30 yards quickly. My main fear is that Henne's inaccuracy would miss these electric target too often.

We are gonna need team speed on OFF & ST in a bad way. Those type of players don't look like Ronnie Brown. Even the physical freaks like RB Adrian Peterson don't run 4.3+.



Fla St guard Rodney Houston maybe the best pulling guard in the draft. But he's listed at 290lbs and that means very light at the point of attack in the nfl. He will have to add 20lbs of muscle to not be outmuscled handidly at the poa.

To even consider taking an o-lineman 1st rd Miami needs to trade back to 25th or further, hopefully picking up a 2nd rd pick in the process. Hopefully an olineman won't be neccessary if we can "secretly" get a committment from Logan Mankins before the draft begins. LOL.............


I would love Hunter or Devine. Both have explosive 4.3 speed and being only 5'8 inches tall by the time the defense find these small plants amongst the tall forest, they will have blown by them. Kind of like Danny Woodhead with jets strapped to his a*ss. LOL.........


Shhhhhh, ink is still drying on that backroom wink nod deal for Mankins! lol

I totally agree that if the college players aren't there to merit a 1st round grade the Fins should move back.

I would even take slightly less than the going rate to do so as I feel like the 2-4 round range has many more of the proper value player selections.

No sense in spending all of Ross's $$ if the player they grab doesn't become a stud worthy of the first round.

Good stuff DB



Good post @ 3:36 PM. We played terrible offenses and offenses missing key players and still struggled getting off of the field on 3rd downs in 2010. In 2011, we play 11 games against offenses ranked 13th and higher in the final 2010 nfl rankings.

If that defense struggled getting off the field against middle of the pack and bottom dwellar offenses imagine what's looming this season if certain critical defensive issues arent addressed. You are correct, some of us are so blinded by obvious offensive issues we fail to see the defensive issues also needed addressing.

No matter what offensive additions are made I highly doubt we become a 30ppg offensive team in one single offseason. That's what we'll need to become if the 3rd down issues remain with the defense.

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