I never played in the NFL and made the Pro Bowl six times for playing offensive line like Dan Dierdorf did. And I am not a billionaire and the owner of the Miami Dolphins as Stephen Ross is.
So when both made the point Sunday that the 0-7 Dolphins aren't really that bad relatively speaking I had to do a self-check because I really, truly do not agree them.
Dierdorf, a color man who called the game for CBS Sunday, made the point during the game that the Dolphins are really not that bad. And to illustrate the point he said the St. Louis Rams, for example, are not nearly as good as Miami.
Of course, I disagree. And while Dierdorf is an expert and I'm a nobody, I know facts. And the fact is Dierdorf, a St. Louis resident, made this comment on a day the Dolphins dropped to 0-7 and the Rams beat the ever-living-snot out of the New Orleans Saints for three quarters before holding on to a 31-21 victory.
And the Rams did this with A.J. Feeley as their starter.
So there's that.
Ross, as I tell you in my column in today's Miami Herald, has big plans for the Dolphins for next year. Please read my column. During our conversation Sunday he mentioned that he doesn't think the Dolphins are that far from being a good team.
"Parcells said you are what your record says you are," Ross said. "But certainly we're a much better team than our record says it says. Last week, I was looking at some power ratings and we were No. 25. So I don't think we're No. 31 or 32 ... Everybody's always says we have a much better team than our record says it is. We're not that far away."
I've heard this for so long, I no longer believe it as a matter of policy and certainly don't believe it of the 2011 Dolphins. With respect to Dierdorf and Ross, you are wrong.
The Dolphins suck.
I'm not saying the cupboard is bare and the team is completely lacking talent.
But I am saying the Dolphins are not close.
They are, indeed, what their record says they are and that's one of only two winless teams in the league. The Dolphins are not, I repeat, not just the acquisition of one franchise rookie quarterback away from being a playoff team.
They need more than that. Much more. Consider:
Miami's secondary is incapable of producing interceptions which is bad because they also cannot cover well with any consistency. That's not my opinion. That is a fact. It has been a fact for some time now. That's because the Dolphins need a playmaking free safety and they need help at cornerback -- probably a starter.
One of the problems the Dolphins have in the back end is the front end. They do not get enough pressure on the quarterback. I would tell you that issue is primarily a result of Miami's outside linebacker play. Cameron Wake is good but he hasn't been as good as last year. And Wake is getting no help from the off side.
Jason Taylor isn't getting to the quarterback. He's also not get a lot of pressurewhich is just as important as sacks. The only reason the 37-year-old pass rusher's problems is an issue is because second-year linebacker Koa Misi is not doing it either.
The Dolphins need OLB help to improve the pass rush.
The team needs help on offense -- besides quarterback, that is.
This team lacks a consistent deep threat. After three seasons, we should get the drift that Brian Hartline is not that threat. Clyde Gates is a rookie and hasn't yet shown he can provide that threat. Gates hasn't even shown a hint of getting deep. Neither Brandon Marshall nor Davone Bess are ever going to be that threat based on their talents.
So Miami needs that deep-threat receiver.
Not done. Still.
Miami needs offensive line help again in 2012. Vernon Carey is unsigned for next year so unless the team re-signs him, there will be a need at right guard. There definitely is a need at right tackle because Marc Colombo is a sack-machine, which is only good if he were a defensive tackle but is actually really awful because he's an offensive tackle.
Once again on Sunday, Colombo yielded his almost weekly sack.
Did I mention Paul Soliai is also unsigned for 2012? The handling of his contract situation was a nightmare when it began in October 2010. And that continues because he expects to be paid in the offseason when he's scheduled to be an unrestricted free agent. So that's an issue.
Bottom line? I just mentioned QB, WR, RG, RT, NT, OLB, CB, and FS as areas of concern or great need for Miami. I didn't even mention the fact Kevin Burnett, signed to be a star, has played like he might need to be replaced depending on who is putting the team together next offseason.
So does this sound like a team that is just about ready to contend? Does this sound like a team that would be great with the mere addition of Andrew Luck?
Sorry, fellas, but there's lot of work to be done here.