Being on the radio allows me to talk to you, the Dolphins fan, directly and instantly. Yes, this blog, my column, and twitter helps me stay in contact with you as well. But there is nothing like talking to someone on the phone which allows us unrivaled interaction.
So it was on Thursday, during the final hour Armando and the Amigo on 640-AM in South Florida, that I got to talk to a handful of Dolphins fans about their feelings relative to the team's current state. Understand, the topic grew out of the latest news that owner Stephen Ross had cut the salaries of club staffers, citing tough economic times brought about by poor seasons ticket sales and the current league-wide lockout.
There aren't a lot of fans happy about the club's employees taking a pay cut. Some even talked about this being another black eye for the club.
And then I had to speak my mind. Look, I get that some of you are upset with the Dolphins. I understand that at the end of last season -- after a 7-9 season that included a 1-7 showing at home -- some of you vowed not to renew your season ticket purchases. Others not already season ticket holders or not living locally vowed to disconnect from the team.
I understand some of you were sick and tired of being sick and tired.
And having said all of that, I believe only a small minority of you truly, actually mean what you're saying. I think a vast majority will do as you have done so many other years and simply forgive and forget and move on. You'll come back to the team. You'll come back through the turnstiles. You'll continue to have the Dolphins as a part of your being.
Yes, your heads told you to walk away after the season and then that was echoed with the embarrassment of the coaching search that either was or wasn't, depending on whom you believe.
But I am convinced your hearts will bring you back and do so in time for the 2011 season.
Am I right? Or am I wrong?
If you think I'm wrong, please pause a second. We just got past the draft. The Dolphins added what will likely be a starting center and a running back who will either start or have the ball in his hands 200 times in 2011.
Some of you are perfectly happy with that. Some are not. Some wanted the quarterback. Whatever your stance, I would tell you the most exciting part of the offseason is still on the horizon.
We all know the Dolphins -- with deep pockets, a willingness to spend, and a general manager who promises to be aggressive -- are likely to be major players in free agency. By major players, I mean they'll go get top-quality talent and they'll do it generally early in the process.
And that's when I believe the folks who were angry at the end of last season will suddenly forget some of that emotion. That's when I believe the folks who vowed to walk away will start considering what the additions might reap for the team in 2011. That's when the forgiveness stage will kick in and memories will begin to fail.
And, I believe, that's when you'll be right back where you were every year you've been a fan. Rooting for the Dolphins. Living and dying with them. Hating their rivals. Hoping and praying for the best.
Am I wrong?
Oh, I'm sure some might be inclined to stick with the feeling they had at the end of January. I can understand that. But at the end of the day you guys are fans. You are fanatics. You don't make logical, calculated decisions. You make decisions of the heart.
Listen to the segment on the show starting around 9:45 just before I invited the fans to call in. (You can listen to the whole thing if you wish, but I'm getting you to the point where the topic was flowing.) Listen to the fans who called in and how they felt.
And tell me where you stand -- not today, with free agency afar off in the distance. Tell me where you stand, knowing the Dolphins are going to add more talent in free agency and the new, inviting season will come in some months, along with a heaping, helping of optimism.