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Ireland's assignment is simple really -- make a difference

Jeff Ireland will conduct his 2011 pre-draft presser (as ordered by NFL rules) today and I will be certain to look beneath his footwear to check for a net. I'm pretty certain I will not find one, but for journalism's sake one has to confirm things.

I want to confirm Ireland is indeed operating in this draft without the Bill Parcells net under him.

This draft, you see, Ireland's on his own. It's his baby and his alone. To him goes the glory if things work out. To him goes the ignominy if things don't.

This draft will be different for the Dolphins in that there can be no rewrite of history when or if things go wrong. The Pat White draft pick, for example, was pretty much an orphan for quite some time until the last three months when I got Ireland and Parcells to took responsibility for the mistake on the record -- Ireland on my radio show, Parcells in a column I wrote last week.Jeff ireland one

No big deal, but I think that kind of set the record straight.

Parcells is still proud of the Jake Long pick and doesn't deem it a mistake but he understands, he also told me, if some folks think Matt Ryan would have been the better selection. The Big Tuna has also told me that in the spring of 2008 he sent Dan Henning, Tony Sparano and Ireland to Ann Arbor (to see Chad Henne), to Delaware (to see Joe Flacco) and to Boston (to see Ryan) and everyone came back saying Henne was every bit as good as the other two. 

So again, responsibility goes where responsibility goes -- on the entire organization.

Now the responsibility belongs to Ireland. As it should be. No more shadows behind curtains. No more masters jostling puppet strings. We're not in Oz anymore.

Jeff Ireland is the man and he will get from fans whatever his picks bring him -- credit or contempt.

But, I wonder, what is your confidence level he's ready? Are you anxious whether he can avoid mistakes that would not be made if Parcells were here? Are you excited he might make more bold moves now that Parcells is gone?

My view?

There can be no doubt Ireland has an approach that is his own. I hope he does, anyway, because he is an individual rather than a clone of his mentor. He's younger than Parcells which suggests he might be bolder but also comes with the caution that he might not be wiser. Jeff and bill

I do not predict he will depart from precepts Parcells taught him. He'll pick prototype guys or try to, anyway. He'll want big guys. He'll especially want fast guys in this draft. He'll try to stay away from troublemakers.

I hope he is desperate. I hope he comes to this draft ready to go for the end zone rather than settle for field goals. I've had enough of field goals. I saw too many field goals the past couple of seasons. I want picks that will prove themselves to be touchdowns!

Think about it: The Dolphins have been good at drafting the past three years. Assuming Jared Odrick does get healthy and back on the field and becomes productive, the last three years brought outstanding to solid picks, with Long being outstanding and Vontae Davis representing solid.

The second round has brought satisifaction (Sean Smith) and disappointment (White) and a still hung jury in the court of public opinion (Chad Henne). Later rounds have had both good and bad picks.

So the work is worthy of a C-plus, in my opinion. 

That's because there has been no awe inspiring pick. There has been no take-your-breath-away, give-that-personnel man-a-prize selection. Not one Dolphins pick the past three years has been a game-changer. Not one Dolphins pick the past three years has brought a player other teams must game-plan around or for. Long isn't that because, by definition, left tackles can only change the course of a game by screwing up. They do not change the course of games when they merely do their jobs.

Davis has not been a game-changer. Smith hasn't although had he caught his six potential interceptions a year ago that he dropped, he might have reached that plateau. Odrick hasn't gotten a chance. Henne hasn't been a game-changer in any consistent or confidence-building manner. Anyone else?


Ireland needs to find a game changer this draft. He needs to do something his mentor could not. Oh, Parcells helped bring solid talent to the Dolphins when they were lacking even that. But conference titles and Super Bowls are won with difference-makers, game-changers stacked atop solid talent.

Ireland, on his own this draft, has work to do.

NOTES: I will be updating the blog several times Thursday so check back throughout the day. I will also provide real-time updates from Ireland's presser on twitter. So please follow me to get those updates.


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Little has all the talent and like we've seen in the last few years WR outta UNC have been amazing and play the same at the next level. He fell because of the off field issue with NCAA violations. He is probably going to 4th rd maybe 3rd if someone really likes him. Question marks becuz he didn't play last year come into factor as well


I'm trying to think of WRs who played at UNC again? Did Ramses Barden? Brandon Tate? I know I'm missing some guys....help!

I missed Hakeem Nicks. I knew there was someone...

What about Santini Johnson? Anmy of you guys have a take on him?

Here's a FACT:
If we don't pick Ingram @ 15...The Pats WILL grab him @ 17.
Then, for the next 10 years on two Sunday's Ireland will regret it as Ingram plows over our D-backs for TD's.

tradeback + 6th and trade crowder 4th + 5th rd pick
1st Kyle Rudolph TE
2nd Andy Dalton QB
3rd Jordan Todman RB
4th Kristofer O'Dowd C
4th Charles Clay RB/FB
5th Greg Salas WR
5th Lee Ziemba OG
6th DeMarcus Van Dyke DB
6th Ryan Hill DB
7th Mark Herzlich OLB
7th Dom DiCecco SS

Mark Ingram is the next Emmitt Smith...Don't blow this Ireland.
You can still grab a QB in the later rounds and even make a play for Palmer in FA once the lock out ends.

Barden? he played for some small school in cali...
Tate, Nicks, Foster

One good thing about Ireland, he's a sleazy fu-k. Doesn't let on anything. good good good

I dont remember Emmitt having arthritis. Mike Lombardi of the NFL Network reported that he had 2 teams tell him Ingram's knee was such a concern he's not even on their teams draft board. He's prob gonna slip out of the 1st round anyway.

Ingram would be a wasted pick.


Foster? Which Foster? Arian Foster? Running back?


Your mock is very good. You're probably one of the few guys that has us taking Rudolph in the first. It's a good pick in a tradeback.

Only concern is that we won't be able to trade Crowder while the lockout is on.

Hell, I didn't know that Garbage. If it is so, then I'll take Kyle Rudolph with our first pick.

great post Mando, thanks! yea, we screwed up on the Ryan pick, but no one's perfect, unfortunately. This team has solid leadership. I might not agree with some picks or plays during a game, but I have confidence in these guys. They'll figure things out.



Yea...I remember a bunch of doctors saying Drew Brees throwing arm was done.
Hey...he recently won the Superbowl right?

Mark Ingram Quote from Sunday:
"I guess somebody wants me to fall down the board. But my knee is 100 percent. It’s strong, it’s healthy. All the teams have positive reports on my knee, and Dr. (James) Andrews has given positive reports on my knee is as well. It’s in great shape. All those reports are false information."

Don't let other teams toss up a smokescreen to hide their intentions.
Ricky & Ronnie are GONE once the lockout is resolved.

So many draft "experts"....so little actual knowledge.

Gotta love this time of year.

I hope he gets better... Linebackers have to be playmakers


Agreed. I'm not a Crowder fan....no way no Sir.

Guys, NHFINFAN isn't wrong. Passing on Ingram could be a very big mistake. I know a lot of people are down on the idea of picking him at 15 but the guy is a playmaker. He didn't end up getting all those yards or TDs by having someone else do it for him. Like him or dislike him, the kid has talent.

First, rehabbing and strengthening a shoulder is much different that a knee that is degenerative. Not all injuries are the same.

Second, I'm not saying Ingram isnt any good. If he's healthy, he could surely be a productive player. But I think there are at least 2 or 3 RB's better than him in this draft, and most importantly, why risk a 1st round pick on a guy with a questionable knee? The risk vs. the reward doesnt add up.

And there is no way Belichik takes him with a 1st rounder if the reports about his knee are accurate. This guy has made a living with cast offs and low round picks in the backfield. Green-Ellis, Woodhead, Sammy Morris, K Faulk. C. Dillon and Antoine Smith at the end of their careers, ect.

thank you... Brooks Foster hasn't really done anything yet but he's very good I think we had him on our practice squad. I like Moore but I think we need to add a receiver this year to step into the #2 position. I really like Little and Salas. Toliver could be similar to Marshall.

Guys...I don't have facts at my finger tips on all the other RB's in the draft, but Ingram comes from great stock and from all I've read is a smart player.
IF his knee does have arthritis then I agree, we should not take him at 15...guess that's why Ireland makes the big bucks.
In any case, we NEED a solid, durable RB and the draft is usually the best place to grab one vs. FA.


I think Bellichik takes Ingram is he's still there at 28. That's just my opinion. I think he's going pass-rusher at 17. Guys like Kerrigan and JJ Watt will likely still be there and that's what they need.

Bellichik has been burned by Maroney in the first, so he'll be careful what he does but in a year where he has picks to play with Ingram at 28 is a good to very good gamble for him.


I have to be honest, I don't know Brooks Foster. I may have heard the name before. I'm familiar with some of the other WR kids we have in reserve, so I have to think they are ahead of Foster in the pecking order. I also like Wallace.

I believe Ingram will be long gone by 28.


Perhaps not. If the news on his knee is true, he may drop. Consensus is that running backs are 'cold' for this draft. There's not a lot of teams looking for one. I count us, New Orleans and the Packers as the only teams that really have a need.

I think Ingram can be great but I don't see him being the best in this draft. IMO the top 3 RB are 20 + guys talent wise Ingram is the only one top scouts say is worthy of a first rd pick. I'd pick him up if he was still available with a trade down but at 15 I think there are better players on the board and plenty of other great RB later in the draft.

honestly don't think TS does a good job at using the personnel. I think Brooks Foster would be better then Wallace and Moore but yet he is on the practice squad. he was G in college ran 4.38 and bench pressed 27 times. 38.5' vert and 10ft7in broad... 5th rd pick in 09

if I were TS and I saw what Tate did to us than he should know that Foster was better in College and could be a real pro threat


Trade Down & get our #2 back, but if we're stuck with our #15 pick WE BETTER get a RB!!! 3rd round start building our o line!!!

"This draft, you see, Ireland's on his own. It's his baby and his alone. To him goes the glory if things work out. To him goes the ignominy if things don't".

Armando.....do you really think if Ireland drafts good players in this drat and the next few following that PARCELLS won't be cheeesing in front of some camera on ESPN/NRL Network...Taking all the credit.....

I believe he will.....

Belicheat KNEW that if he took the jets job....that Parcells would be finding away to to weasel in on the credit for for years to come.....

SO he got out of dodge....and took the pats...

they got to draft the best offensive linemen in the draft first take the best available like anthony castonzo danny watkins or nate solder then draft a center stefen wisnieski brandon fusco then go for a runningback like allen bradford then come back to another offensive lineman like william rackley clint boling or james brewer then go for a tightend like rob housler or luke stocker then come back and go for a receiver or another runningback that way we got a very strong offensiveline and we can bolster our backfield then fill in with our other picks

i know everyone wants a quarterback but if we make our offensive line the best in football i think chad henne would be alright we can still draft one late like andy dalton another chad pennington who i think will be a good back up you look at the steelers the jets they have soso qbs and runningbacks but they always have great offensive lines and with our defense maybe pick up another linebacker and maybe safety but with our defense and if we can build our offensive line i think we can really be a challenger

When grading a teams draft, you should not only take into consideration what a pick has turned into, but what player was passed up to make that pick. When graded out this way, Parcell's record here is dismal indeed! As good as Jake Long is, there isn't a personnel man in the league who would take him over Matt Ryan. Vontae Davis is a nice player, but again, I don't think there's a GM in the league who would take him over Clay Mathews Jr, a real dominating player. Let's not even get into who we could have had instead of Pat White or Patrick Turner! Taking these things into consideration, I'd give the Tuna a D!

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