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... and the curious case of Chad Henne

Still puzzled. Today, what to make of Chad Henne.

He has improved. No question about that. He is more aggressive. He looks to make the downfield throw a lot more. He moves his team from 20-yard line to 20-yard line like the dickens. He's completing 56.5 percent of his passes, which is lower than last year, but he has four touchdowns and three interceptions which is a better stat than his upside down more-intercepts-than-TDs ratio of the past two seasons.

So that's good.

But there is something missing. Still.

He's still not very good on third down.

His passer rating on third down is 69.6, which is 13 points lower than his overall rating. He completes only 53 percent of his passes on third down. And he's ranked 21st in the NFL on third-down passing. This stat is important because big-time NFL QBs make their money on third down. That's why it's called the money down.

It was eye-opening to see young, unproven Colt McCoy lead his team to a winning TD late last week and Henne not be able to move his team 15 or 20 yards for a responding and winning field goal. That all came in the fourth quarter.

Henne has been bad in the fourth quarter as well this year. He is the 31st-ranked (of 33 players) fourth-quarter passer this season. His fourth-quarter passer rating is atrocious at 48.7. By comparison, the Dolphins defense this weekend faces the top-ranked fourth-quarter passer in Phillip Rivers of San Diego. His fourth-quarter rating is 136.4

Henne so far is completing fewer than half his fourth quarter passes. His completion percentage is 42.9. That is the worst in the NFL.

So while Henne has improved from last year, he has a long way to go yet. And, it should be considered, every statistical category you look at with him, indeed, every stat you study for the Dolphins offense must be done with this in mind:

The Dolphins opened the season against a team whose defense is the worst in the NFL right now. That's right, the Patriots have gotten lit by everyone on defense this year and are ranked No. 32 in that category this year.

Anyway, this is a full text of Henne's meeting with the media this week:

(On Brian Hartline’s progression this season) - “Yeah, I thought Brian (Hartline) stepped up big. In the previous game, he hasn’t got a lot of balls because we had some one-on-one coverages with other guys and they were first in the progression, but now teams are starting to take away some of our receivers away. Brian has done a great job one-on-one and I feel confident going to him if we have that matchup."

(On practicing toe-tapping catches on the sideline and back shoulder throws) - “Yeah, the back shoulder throws has evolved. I think every team works it in practice, one-on-one routes. Quarterbacks are becoming a custom to it and receivers are doing a great job adjusting, but Brian (Hartline), his toe-touch and his way to stay in bounds is just amazing. He does it in practice a lot, goes against our defense one-on-one and it shows in practice he gets it done and carries over."

(On Brian Hartline’s ability to run after the catch) - “Yeah, I think he’s quick in transition when he gets the ball. He tucks it under and looks to get yards up field quick, he’s done a really good job with that."

(On Reggie Bush not receiving many catches lately) - “Well, I mean, sometime they’re bring some pressure where he has to stand and protect and other times, he’s out there, but we’re completing balls down the field. We’re looking to complete balls down field first, not the underneath routes. If it comes a case where we have a matchup out there and I need to come down to Reggie (Bush), I’ll come down to him."

(On Reggie Bush not receiving many catches due to Daniel Thomas catching good as well)- “Well, I mean, we’re switching them in and out. We’re giving them a good mix and whoever is in on that play, we will see who will get the ball, but nobody’s going to tell. We’re trying to look down field and make big plays, if not, we’ll get it down to those guys."

(On not having red zone success psychological or execution) - “It’s all about execution, I mean, we have the plays…whether we need to study more in there or more things down there, but we just got to execute. Execute our game plan. If it’s there, take it, we got to be aggressive down there and make plays and if it’s not, it’s not much we can do. We can run the ball, throw the ball, we just got to go down there, be confident in ourselves, and make the plays."

(On Brandon Marshall being frustrated and getting the better of him) - “No, I think sometimes he gets frustrated because they’re double covering him, he feels they’re holding him, but Brandon (Marshall) has done a great job. It’s his attitude towards our team and on the field so we’re going to keep going to him and give him a shot."

(On Daniel Thomas change from the preseason to the regular season) - “I think it’s confidence and just understanding our offense in the running game. Just understanding where the blocks are going to be, where the holes are going to open up and he’s definitely confident where he’s running, how he is running so he’s done a really good job trying to get the extra yards for us."

(On what stands out regarding Daniel Thomas) - “I mean, he’s a powerful back. He’s slapped together, he’s a pretty muscular guy so he’s going to get the extra yards for us. It’s fun to watch when he runs."

(On what you can do to rally the team after being 0-3) - “I mean, enthusiasm in practice, try to get the guys going, not feeling down on ourselves, try to keep a positive attitude as much as we can, look them in the face and say hey, I’m confident, I’m confident in them. We have the players, we have everybody in the situation, we just got to go out there and do it, all of us, believe it, do it in practice, prepare well in the film room, do the extra things. We got to go, we can’t make excuses, can’t point fingers. We just got to be a team, come together, and play."

(On facing a 0-3 deficit in the past) - “I mean, I think you can, but it’s different faces here so a lot of guys haven’t been through it and some guys have. I think it just comes back as coming as a team, playing well, executing on Sunday when our number is called. If it’s 49 or 45 seconds left in the game and the offense is out there on the field, we need to make the plays and score the touchdown.”


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Anyone catch the Tosh.0? Man, we suck.

Dear Mr. Salguero

"(On Reggie Bush not receiving many catches lately) - “Well, I mean,"

"(On Reggie Bush not receiving many catches due to Daniel Thomas catching good as well)- “Well, I mean,"

"(On not having red zone success psychological or execution) - “It’s all about execution, I mean,"

"(On what stands out regarding Daniel Thomas) - “I mean,"

"(On what you can do to rally the team after being 0-3) - “I mean,"

"(On facing a 0-3 deficit in the past) - “I mean,"

SoiledBottom... I mean Soiled :)

Thank god hockey season starts next week. I can't watch another Fins game.

I don't care how you slice it Mondo, Henne isn't putting up W's and that is what counts. You can say that Henne is the same old crummy QB as last year - he just sucks a little less at it this year (i.e we're still losing).

4 touchdowns to 3 picks... really? Improvement? Its just so sad...

Dear Mr. LA Fan

"Anyone catch the Tosh.0? Man, we suck."

Yes I did.....I'm Daggering right now

Soiled :)

It's not difficult to understand. The other teams turn up the heat and the right side of the line collapses and Henne rarely has time to throw the ball. It the same situation in the red zone and it's the same thing when it comes to the run. We can run all day when it doesn't mean anything. We are what we are 0-3 and the coaching staff / personal staff and ownership are just what there are losers.

Dear Mr. Salguero

I think Coach Sparano and Chad Henne could use a few lessons from that guy from "The Kings speech" Lionel Logue.....he helped Berty with his stammering.

Soiled :)

The problem with Henne is the same problem with Jacory. They are not winners. Chad can put up as many numbers as he wants but in the end he will lose a duel with nearly any decent Qb, even to a Colt mcCoy.

Jacory is the same, he can put up decent numbers sometimes but he can't outduel any QB with similar talent. These teams will both continue to be average to below average until they get QB's who are winners not just throwers.

Numbers don't always tell the story.

Henne will never be an "A" list QB, he's all arm and no accuracy, all program no little instinct. Zero swagger.

He's a backup.

Mando, you've correctly identified (sorry Poizen) why we still need that franchise QB. While Henne has been better, and his play COULD win games for SOME team, this team isn't good enough to get inconsistent play from it's QB. This team isn't good enough to overcome mediocre QB play at clutch times (3rd down, 4th quarter). This has plagued Henne since he's been a starter. Could he eventually evolve to become a more well-rounded QB, his progression this year tells me yes. However, he's on a team that needs an elite QB NOW. There's really no time for this team to continue to wait for Henne. And obviously the GM/Coaches aren't good enough to build an elite team around an ok QB to make him most effective.

Keep Henne, let him progress, but get in the franchise QB sweepstakes, we'll be in perfect position after this year to pick one in the upcoming Draft, and then see what a consistent and clutch QB can do with a lackluster team around him.

Chad is not a closer....we need a closer.

Those 4th quarter stats are pretty alarming. Henne just can't seem to get it done in crunchtime. On another topic,anybody else see Rivers lighting up that terrible secondary? Career high passing day?Hope not,but have NO confidence in that group.

Henne is not very good in 3rd downs, because we dont run the ball well.

We are not a balanced team. Other team knows what our next play is.

Also, penatlies are not making 3rd conversations easy either.

LA Fan: I'll defend Henne a bit too. Two of those picks were on game ending desperation throws. A couple of caught TD's by Brandon Marshall and the Phins are 2-1. He is better.


You see, I don't hate Henne like some of you think. I just hate his stats which say loud and clear he is always terrible in the Clutch.

1. Henne is the 31st-ranked (of 33 players) fourth-quarter passer this season.

2. His fourth-quarter passer rating is atrocious at 48.7.

3. His fourth-quarter completion percentage is 42.9. That is the worst in the NFL.

Nothing about this is defensible for a 4 year college starter, 4th year pro - 3rd year Pro starter (Henne is now a veteran folks):

For every dropped pass someone wants to bring up, I can mention a bad throw, so that stuff is a wash.

Everyone wants to put this on Henne but seriously, this year so far I think that is totally misplaced. There are a lot of players on this team not making key plays. Especially on defense. Reggie Bush has been a failed experiment so far. Daniels looks great but we have to keep him healthy. I'm HOPING this new RB they just brought in is recovered from his injuries. In truth, I've said it here before, I think we have three primary issues:

1) Poor free agency management by Ireland.

2) Occassional questionable game management.

3) Money players not making money plays. I'll particularly call out Bush and Marshall.

We aren't pass blocking worth a d@mn and our secondary and linebackers have been horrible in coverage as far as I can tell. Cut Henne some slack.

Henne still holds the ball too long. Thats been his problem all along. Hes still not good picking up the blitz!! Did you see brady when we blitzed him he tore us up. Teams continue to stack the box on us and blitz every down because they know hennes going to sit back there like a duck!!

This current regime needs a veteran qb on the roster. A Chad Pennington or Kyle Orton or Carson Palmer.

On this team a veteran qb would/should be able to call their own plays. Cause the above-mentioned qbs know a lot more than Sparano & Co.

Going into week 4, many NFL teams are having problems with their offensive & defensive lines BUT they are still finding ways to win.

Start Matt Moore. He might be our winning "closer".

How about we let the season play out before deciding what Henne is. There's been SOME progress this year in a new offence. I'm not saying he's the answer and I'm not saying I want him as starter next year. I'm saying there's still 3 games left to show what he's got. I think everyone wants to be knee jerk all the time. There were people on here last year who said he'd NEVER start for anyone in the league again (I'm looking at you billy connors, aka dusty bottoms). If you project his numbers over a full season it's 20 TDs and 15 INTS, again an improvement from last year. Let's let this thing play out fully and hope he makes the decision hard for the GM next offseason whether to bring him back or not. If we finish bottom 5 (which I think we will), I'm all for drafting a new QB. But let's watch and see what he can do over the last 13 games.

Give Matt Moore a shot. He has consistently won games in this league. Leading up to last years Carolina debacle, he was 8-2. What have we got to lose except for a few more games. He could ignite the offense. Problem is, Sporano is going to sink the ship w Henne at the helm.


Puzzling that there was no mention of the curious case of the Dolphins' pitiful OL and the amount of sacks given up and the fact that we're lucky that Henne hasn't already been broken in two.

The most eye-opening part of seeing the young, unproven Colt McCoy lead his team to a winning TD late last week was the non existent pressure on him by our passive defense.

Starting Matt Moore is not the answer


Instead of an article on Henne every other day, hope some articles on our defence. Like 'where have you been Karlos Dansby', 'The Invisible Man, Burnett', 'The Best CB Tandem in the NFL (NOT!), Smith and Davis', 'Top Safety Prospects in the 2012 Draft'.

Henne has a big target 1000 yard receiver. Yeah he drops some, but he catches a LOT!

Henne has one of the best slot receivers in the NFL.

Henne has one of the fastest WR's in the NFL - Gates.

Henne has two backs, Bush and Thomas, that are both excellent pass catchers.

Henne has the best LT in the game.

Henne as an awful lot to work with.

GREAT post at 9:17 Craig!!!! I agree with you 100%


Knee jerk reaction?

Henne has a lot of experience. He is a veteran. At this point in his career there is simply no excuse for his 4th quarter stats. It may be a new offense, but he is familiar with all his receivers and he has been with his LT for 7 years.

unfortunately ohio, Henne is not the answer either

Behind this OL, QB high rate of success is unlikely. Nobody ever notices T Brady's stats are great when not pressured and he has 6 seconds to throw, not so hot when he has 2 seconds. Of course, Henne is no Brady, so don't jump all over my comment for that statement, but better protection would allow for a better evaluation of his ability.


Knee jerk from the standpoint of, 'why does the decision have to be made now'. Everyone is in too much of a hurry to make their minds up on things. It's September. Why do we have to make our minds up now when we can't change it until April. Have an open mind and let's see how he does.

I'll also add, two organizations were of the mindset that Ryan Fitzpatrick wasn't the answer. Look at him now in Buffalo. Everybody raves about him. The reverse of that is everyone was ready to annoint Sam Bradford 'the next one'. How's that working out? Patience is SEVERELY lacking with football fans and the media. You guys will get your wish and Henne will be somewhere else next year and you can get your precious first round QB. Let's see how it all plays out.

BJ Wade...........I don't disagree with you, and I'm not saying Henne is our Franchise QB.

But I'd rather not give it up to Moore until later in the season.

"Everyone wants to put this on Henne."

This is the constant refrain from the Henne-backers. Chad Henne is a mediocre QB getting better, there's absolutely no other way to describe him. And you can bemoan his Coaching, the defense, the oline, the RBs, a ProBowl WR, whatever you like. In the end, a QB is graded on a few simple things: record, 3rd-down completions, clutch plays. That's it.

People say Henne's better than Sanchez. Probably so. And? Sanchez has led his team to 2 AFC Championships, where's Henne led his team? Answer, nowhere, actually this is the first Season Henne's LEADING his team.

I'm not mad at Chad, really. I can think of maybe a handful of plays I'd be critical of him this year. I don't think he's anything this year but part of the solution (definitely hasn't been anywhere CLOSE to the biggest problem).

But if we want a winning team we can't accept mediocre ANYWHERE in the organization. Not at GM, not at HC, not with the Coaches, the defense, the RBs, the WRs, and certainly not at QB. Henne himself (or any QB worth their salt) would agree that if you don't get it done on 3rd down and in the 4th quarter, then you probably shouldn't be starting. That's just the way it is in this business. If it was easy then I would be QB. If it was about stroking someone and making them feel good and being patient until someone grasps the way to play the game then there wouldn't be a bunch of backup QBs, with a few elite and franchise QBs mixed in.

Fans should not be accepting of mediocre play, even from their favorites. And that's why I don't defend MY guy (Brandon Marshall) because he hasn't played like the ProBowl player in Denver either, and that's not acceptable to me.

Devils Advocate, the 2bad highest paid players on offense, long and Marshall have stunk badly. We all knew henne wasnt good enough to shoulder the entire load. These highly paid vets have to step up their game a lot more than henne does.

And I'm not even going to mention Columbo who can't block anyone. Henne has taken some huge shots already. Fukkin sparano and Ireland and their stupid personnel decisions.

Good Point Craig.......Everyone talks about a First round QB like it is a for sure win for the Dolphins

Let's see.......Jamarcus Russel, Ryan Leaf, Brady Quinn, Kyle Boller, Tim Couch, Pat Ramsey....


With that caveat (last post), Henne is my QB. I don't want Moore. I don't want anyone signed (unless it's a backup role), even Palmer. No one will give this team a better chance to win than Henne (at least that's available right now). If the team fixed other issues (DEFENSE) then Henne's shortcomings wouldn't even matter. So if I'm the Dolphins, I let Henne continue to grow, help him by getting the rest of the offense to perform better, continue to gel in Daboll's system, and freakin' PLAY SOME DEFENSE AND WORRY ABOUT THAT GLARING PROBLEM!!!

Yea DC, if they let Henne grow and decide to draft a talented QB, at least he could be a good backup /second option / or competition for the new guy in the future

If you can't win on third down, you can't win in the NFL. Trying to make Henne seem statistically better than he really is as a QB just won't cut it.

I still hope we re-sign henne when the new regime comes. Although Matt Flynn is also unrestricted free agent but I think he wants a big pay day. Resign henne and draft one of the top 3 qbs in next years draft with out top 5 pick.


I don't see anyone saying pull Henne now. We don't have a better option. I believe the point is that EVERYONE agrees this is Henne's 'show me' year, and he is off to a terrible start.


I agree with most of that, but I still say Henne has to step up his game as much as the others. Hate beating the same thing to death, but time and again we see QB's with less experience on worse teams rising to the occasion and coming through in the 4th qtr. There are just times where its really on the QB to make something happen despite the play called or talent available.

The good QB's raise the level of their talent, the bad ones lower it.

I have nothing else to say,,,

DC, Please no apologies to me, I want a winner here and I want one bad. and you know I want to draft a QB next year no matter what, because it is an excellent class.

I still STRONGLY disagree with many of you here. Henne's struggles are easy to pin on him. Dont get me wrong, he has had his share of mistakes, but I will challenge any of you to go look at tape of other QB's. Take your pick, and watch, you will see mistakes also.

1st thing I would like to point out, is out penalties have put up in many 3rd and long situations. 3rd down effeciency is VERY important to look at. However 3rd and long more than 8, is a tough spot for any QB with less than average protection.

2nd. As I said, watch tape on ANY QB even Brady. If you pass on 3 downs in goal situations, you get 3 plays for the most part then most of the time kick a field goal. What you will notice is that in the mix of the 3 plays that teams run, there is truly 1 good opportunity to score a TD, the other 2 are usually failed attempts, and you design plays off the failed attepts to creat the good scoring play. On 3 occasions this year, Brandon simply dropped the ball, that other receivers are making for their teams. If Brandon makes these catches, this is not an issue.

3rd. We are not using the run at all to help our QB open up the field. You mention the Browns game. We need 20 yards and have one time out. Not one delay run or screen attepted. Also a very bad effort by Brandon Marshall on 4th down that was a catchable ball. If there are no excuses for Henne, please none for Brandon.

4th. Finally, If this is the progession we got out of Henne in just 3 real games, the progression between the 20's have been astronomical. He IS learning and getting better. The red zone is the hardest part of the field, and Henne is socoring more and had 3 VERY bad breaks. The point? He is learning and getting better and as the season goes on there WILL be improvement here also.

So, I am not on board giving up on this kid, he is putting a lot of work in. the progress he has made only shows that he does learn and does get bettter, that will continue to happen with repetition. Just imagine what he could do with 2-3 more seconds in the pocket like the good teams are getting.

you don't have to agree, but please objectivly look at all points.

Henne has flaws, The fade pattern is not his thing. but deep balls require time for things to develop, he does not get that,and still has not thrown deep int's. Just my thoughts.

have an open mind and see how he does. how much more do you want to see? 7-9, 7-9 and 0-3 is enough!


Its about percenatges......yes there are wash-outs....it happens in every proffesion......

However....what is not debatable is the percenatge of success (IE Super Bowl)....winning 1st RD QBs taken in the 1st rd since 1990.....

its something like 63 percent.....thats ONE RD....versus 6 others....

If it wasn't for Tom Brady....the percentage would be in the high 70's ......

Ohio....for the record....since Rodgers is a former 1 rd QB....that means the percentage just went up.....What i posted earlier was based on last years stats.....

Henne did not go 7-9, 7-9 and 0-3. His TEAM did, He did not go at it alone.

I am not sure if anyone here has played football, but I have news for you. A QB leads the offense, YES! However there are another 10 guys that have a job on that offense to make it work.

How many AFC championship games did Marino play in? Sanchez with 2 in his career is closing fast, so at this rate Sanachez is going to be 3 times the QB as Marino? HELL NO! That is stupid. Sanchez has had good teams and play makers doing their job to help elevate him.

Come one poeple... Really?

it doesn't matter that their d is horrible. the patsies d is the worst but because they have brady they will still put up 40 in a game and will still win the afc east. the dolphins have henne and will finish last in the east. enough said.

I think we've witnessed such horrible QB play since the Marino era that even an average Henne looks good to most people. When you start to accept being average, you've lost. We deserve better.

Next up, the curious case of Jeff Ireland...

Win or Lose, I love the Dolphins. I have since i started watching them as a kid in 1973. That said, I think Sparano, Nolan, and Ireland need to go. Not only do I have no confidence in this early part of the season, it is clear the players have no confidence in the system. You don't go from a top 5 defense to where ever we are with the same and additional players. Cleveland and Miami both looked terrible and we lost. I vote we start over now and hope for a leadership that can get us going this year to prepare for a playoff run next year.

Man o man you are so picky! Next thing you are going to expect Henne to actually win. Sheez.

so what, the qb is supposed to be the leader, yeah it is a team game, but without a qb what happens, you lose. yes brady loses, big ben loses, ryan loses, flacco loses, but where are they at the end of the season in the playoffs.

Again, Captain obvious here...

Brady has at least 7 seconds to throw every ball! I am from MA I watch every game. their line is incredible.

Brady is not winning those games alone. the 10 guys around him are playing at the highest level possible.

Please learn something...

I would love to see how many want to spread credit around if we somehow reel of 5 wins in a row....

I got a feeling 90% of that hypothetical would belong to Henne....

and you know what.....IT SHOULD.....

just like he gets most of the blame now when were losing.....

Thats the nature of the game....

ok so pittsburgh has one of the worst o lines too. give me an explanation for that one. big ben gets sacked how many times a season? quite a few and yet they are not 7-9 or worse and sitting at home. again you can believe what you want to.

Chris 623....@ 9:59

That is what I have said in the past.....

We treat Henne like he has just taken his first steps.....

We marvel when he throws a pass on time.....

Stand and cheer when the pass isn't behind the reciever.....

spill our drinks when he doesn't duck his heand and flop in the pocket...but instead finds a lane and runs for 10 yards......

We love our average QB....myself included.....

The QB takes far more blame, or credit for that matter, than any other player on the field because he has a direct impact on every single offensive play. That's why they make the big bucks.

A great QB = 5 great RB = 10 great linemen

Obviously the administration does not agree with me.


Good QB's help elevate average to good players to elite status. Look, when Randy Moss got to Patriots he's was scoring TD every other play! Once he left he became a non factor if you remember before he went to the Patriots he was a non factor in OAK. Wes Welker was good here, but Brady elevated him to elite status. The point is with fairly decent talent aroud him, Henne doesn't captilize on where QB's make their money 3rd downs and in the Red Zone.

Colt McCoy in his second year put together a long drive and then threw a perfect pass where only his guy could get it in the end zone to win the game. That throw had nothing to do with anything other than McCoy being able to make the accurate throw in the clutch. When has Henne ever done that with the game on the line?

Dansby is invisible because he is not on the field, Dansby wasn't even on the field when cleveland had there game winning drive, which is insane, if your going to have a lb on the field it should be dansby, Dansby was frustrated he was on the sidelines for the last 14 or so defense plays, because he wasn't in the Package they were playing. that's the coaches call not Dansby's...
He isn't making a lot of plays, but the coach has to put you in a position to make plays. If its your job to cover a rb out of the backfield, how can you make plays when they throw to wr's or Te's... just saying he might be invisible cause he is doing his job to well so the offense is going else where, or maybe like in the cleveland game he isn't on the field at all... coaching is terrible, never putting players in a position to succeed...

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