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Perception may hurt Dolphins in hunt for Cowher

Sometimes perception is reality. And sometimes that's enough to hurt.

Well, this morning, I'm told the Dolphins may have been hurt in a self inflicted way by the lasting pictures of former Florida coach Urban Meyer sharing time on the sideline with Dolphins owner Stephen Ross at Sun Life Stadium Sunday afternoon.

I wrote in Monday's Herald how Ross and Meyer shared time on the sideline before the game, during the fourth quarter, and during overtime as the Dolphins lost to the Denver Broncos. I made the point that the time the two spent together during the game was coincidental because Ross was headed toward the locker room rather than the field had the Dolphins held their lead.

I also wrote that Meyer isn't a coaching candidate for the team on an interim basis, but if you know Ross and his desire to hire a "star" coach next January, Meyer cannot be discarded longterm from the conversation until either he or Ross says he's not a candidate.

So basically, the time the men spent together wasn't a big deal from a practical standpoint. But apparently from the perspective of football people, the time could be costly to Ross and the Dolphins.

I'm told the sight of Ross laughing and talking with with Meyer while current coach Tony Sparano was busy trying to get his team its first win upset some football folks around the NFL. This morning, I already have three three emails from football people around the league who are livid at the Dolphins owner for "dissing," as one put it, Sparano on his own sideline.

And apparently Bill Cowher could be one of those that might have been left shaking his head. Cowher, by the way, is on Miami's informal list of coaches to approach once the season is over and the Dolphins go searching for a permanent coach replacement. Fact is, Cowher might be the leading candidate for the Dolphins if anyone can be considered that.

But one person who is familiar with Cowher's thinking tells me the former Pittsburgh coach cringes at the idea of working for an owner who would "show up" his current coach as some football folks believe happened Sunday.

Cowher, you see, is keeping close tabs on how the Dolphins are conducting themselves these days because he recognizes Miami is a possible landing spot. But, my source said, Cowher has apparently been disappointed in some of the things he's seen from the Dolphins as to how they treat Sparano, dating back to last year.

It's plausible if you believe Cowher wanted nothing to do with the Dolphins last year when Ross was looking around following a 7-9 season. Cowher was rumored to have told Ross he would not speak about any coaching vacancy while the Dolphins had a coach still on the job.

I cannot say that Cowher actually got that message to the Dolphins or not. But I know people close to him are convinced Cowher doesn't take kindly to other football coaches being mistreated. And, as I just said, a handful of football people who emailed me this morning thought Sparano was disrespected by Ross and Meyer.

So it's quite possible what Ross might see as harmless happenstance time spent with Meyer on Sunday might cost him a chance to land Cowher because the former Pittsburgh coach and other NFL football people have a different opinion what that time meant.

Again, the truth is the Meyer-Ross show on the sideline during the game was coincidental. But that doesn't matter to some people. They perceive that time the owner shared with a potential future coach as disrespect toward his current coach.

And, true or not, perception is reality in their minds.


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Guys, Mando wasn't stirring controversy here. He's REPORTING that controversy erupted (NOT BY MANDO'S DOING) over the image of Ross/Meyer talking. He's reporting that it was an incidental meeting (not planned), yet people are talking anyhow.

Not sure why people are getting on Mando for that.

IF any of this had an inkling of truth, the person to get upset at is Ross. Meyer is the 2nd-coming of Sparano. He's NOT a winner in the NFL, he hasn't proven he knows ANYTHING about winning in the NFL. He'd be a HORRIBLE choice as next HC. He's a nobody.

I don't believe Ross was "dissing" Sparano at all.
Meyer was there as an 'honor" guest to represent the Gators. That's all! Reading any more into that is just grasping at straws. Cower may NOT be the 'Star' Ross is looking at anyway. Who cares what he thinks. If he don't stop dissing the owner, then we don't want him creating MORE problems in Miami. His mouth is overloading his @--. There will be more Harbaugh caliber coaches avail. at the end of the season. Someone that has the drive to succeed and take pride in being able to turn this around.

All opinions are welcome now to see if we can make sense out of all this Mess. You stated my opinion at 10:20 last night was wrong. OK. What's your opinion about the cause(s) of all This. Now, don't become too secretive on Us.

Why is mando so worried about hurting coach's feelings? The current coach hurts my feelings every week. And any prospective coaches should be killing themselves to coach this team. Did you hear how much money he offered harbaugh? He also wants to empower a coach completely. You get to live in south Florida, low taxes, beautiful women, complete autonomy, and a pile of money. And you guys are worried nobody will want this job??? You guys are more insecure than Toronto maple leaf fans.

I still think Miami can go 0 and 16 and still draft third. Indy and St Louis appear to have easier schedules.

This is not a professional football team, but, in my mind, a Division II college football team with CLOWN for a HEAD COACH. WE BLOW!!!!!

Disgusted Fins Fan in MD

Why were "football people" watching Miami anyway? They don't have a pro team anymore.

Watched every min of the T-bow game and loved it. The Dolphins have got to be seen not only a laughing stock but disfuntional down to the owner. My wife and I saw the sideline camera swing to Ross and Urban and I said "wait till tomorrow(today), the press will murder Ross speaking to Urban, the coaching rumor will spread like wild fire". This incident was just pryor to Tebows comback and what a comeback it was. Mando, u should have heard the two CBS announers rag and rag Tebow the entire game, never letting up. It was an assault on Tebow.
As a life long Dolphin fan and U of Fla. I couldnt help, after listening to those two idiots on CBS, cheer Tebow on to victory and what a grand victory it was. Who put this stage play on? Hollywood couldnt write a script like I witnessed yesterday, and its still playing. This little drama will play for at least 3 more months. This thing with Urban has shadowed the incident of the idiot sparano going fot two after a 4th qt TD, when he didnt need to. Cost him the game, Oh well, "As the Mullets Swim".

Please tell me point differential isn't a tie-breaker for the draft.

The score was 6 - 0 Miami and the whole game had defeat all over it. Settling for field goals, drop balls, and the very questionable 2 point attempt (just stupid). Another collective melt down that everyone saw coming. If I'm Ross who gives a rat's ass who is looking at me (or for that matter write a column about me) talking to someone on the side line.

This was my day yesterday, I went golfing about an hr away after the game we went in for lunch,the scores are uup on the screen miami up by 15 with bout 4min left ,my golf buddies all say well I guess your team finally wins one.I get home i have a Message from my 4 and half grandaughter saying Squish the fish they lost again Grandpa.I couldnt believe it until I saw it on TV even a 4 yr old knows how bad this team is.

Charlie Weis could be the next OC.

Ross knows what he's doing. He went after Harbaough right. Look where SF is now. Ross wants to win more than you sorry fans and definatly wants to win more than Salguero. In Ross we must trust.

Where is the talent? LG? RG? RT? TE? FS? SS? CB's? ILB & OLB not named Wake or Dansby? NT? DE's? Green Bays backups are better than our starters. THAT IS SAD!!!!!!!!

I'm actually OK with Sparano lasting all year. I think he helps the cause of securing the highest possible draft pick. The biggest firing has got to be Ireland.

Is there no one else who could fill in for him the rest of the year? Hell, let Peterson do it!

Another sign your team is tanking the Season.

Two mins left, up 8, other team kicks off, you CALL A TIMEOUT to put the right people in place for an onside kick, and don't put your BEST hands people up front?

When NE did that, they used Randy Moss. Chargers used to use Antonio Gates.

I didn't notice, but was Marshall up there? How about Hartline, he's pretty good on the sidelines, was he there? Fasano? Nope, the Genius Sparano puts his faith in MARLON MOORE (a WR who can't even see the field)? LOLOLOL!!!!

Tell me again how we're not openly Sucking for Luck now? I mean from the Ownership down the fan level. Who's NOT in on this?

Why should Cowher care that Ross is talking to Meyer? Everyone knows Sparano about to get his walking papers. Im not so sure Ross would be talking Meyer if Sparano was constantley winning, he's like 1 and 12 in his last 13 games!

I dont care who we bring in I prefer a up and coming coach not associated with Bill Parcells. Look at it this way guys, we cant get any worse...

So in next years Draft and concerning draft order. What season do they use for stremght of schedule? The current season or last years season???

No Bill Cowher = No big deal.

He has been to the promised land.
The fire burns in his belly no more.
So he comes out of retirement when he wants and chooses the team he wants?
If he gives up the TV gig and gets back into football it’s because he is bored.

There has to be an alternative to Cowher in the form of a younger, hungrier, and highly intelligent individual somewhere.

Actually, you have to have lots of talent to lose a game in the last 2 minutes to a team you were dominating for 58 minutes. So I disagree, the team is quite talented in losing.

Which is more embarrassing, dominating the Colts with Peyton, holding the ball for 45 minutes of the game, and losing, or dominating the Broncos with Tebow, ON TEBOW DAY, putting the game basically out of reach of victory for him for 58 minutes, and then letting him come back and beat you?

Gotta be Tebow. He can't throw an accurate pass longer than 5 yards.

DC Dolfan,

Great obeservation about Sparano not having heis "best" hand guys for the onside kick, I just realize that. This just confirms even more so Sparano needs to get canned. Our Draft picks are non existence.

Dolphins got Teabagged yesterday.

Look at it this way guys, we cant get any worse...

Posted by: DKM | October 24, 2011 at 09:41 AM


Bill Cowher nees to lighten up. Just because Ross was talking to Urban Myer on the sidelines doesn't mean that either of them were disrespecting Tony Sparano.
People need to stop reading into things and that's all there is to it. Tony Sparano is the head coach of a team that is 0-6 at this point and Ross has shown no indication up to this point that he is looking to replace him. Again, I repeat, Sparano is the head coach of an 0-6 team, a team that should have improved from it's 7-9 record from last year.
Ross isn't blatently, openly talking to coaching candidates with Tony Sparano at the helm. If Cowher had been contacted directly by Ross while all of this had been going on in Miami then Cowher would have a gripe. However, he wasn't. So, there is no reason for anyone to get there underwear all bunched up about the fact that Ross and Myer were having a conversation on the sideline. Everyone is blowing this out of proportion and they just need to relax.


Bill Snyder for coach in 2012!

Dolphins haven't won a HOME game since 11/14/2010!!
Dolphins haven't won ANY game since 12/12/2010!!!!!

Miami is awful but if you think they're the worst team in the NFL, you haven't seen the Indianapolis Colts. I realize some of you don't want to hear it, but that doesn't make it any less true. Luck will play there.

Fire Sparano and then hire him as interim coach.


Do you even bother reading your articles for grammar, spelling and punctuation errors??? You really should be embarrassed, you are almost as bad as that hack Dave Hyde at the Slum Slantinel.

As far as the premise of the article, people should chill out and not speculate about something that was innocent and meant nothing. Meyer is not going to be coaching the Dolphins.

Again, please stop drinking during working hours and at least try to put out a quality product.


Joe Robbie's corpse

Interested to hear from the 1-2 fans still supporting this team trying to win (bobbyd12, etc.). What would you like to see now? Wanna try Pat Devlin? Strap a helmet on Sparano and put him out there on RG?

I'm just curious here. I can't think of 1 thing this team could do to get better (at this point). Even firing Sparano.

Are you guys ready to accept destiny?

Fire Sparano and then hire him as interim coach.

Posted by: ABR | October 24, 2011 at 09:54 AM

OMG, that's a brilliant idea!!!! Why didn't I think of that.

Post of the DAY!

In the last year and a half, I believe the Patriots and Steelers have more wins in Miami than do the Dolphins!

This season down in the dumps and we virtually arent good enough at anything. I need to find something else to do with my Sundays

I saw the replay of the onside kick. Not only was Hartline out there, the ball was coming straight to him. He should have been the one to field it, IMO, but Moore came in from the side and picked it off...and then fumbled.

This team didn't tank the game on purpose, they just aren't prepared to play 4 quarters. They don't convert, they don't finish. They are a dysfunctionl unit and it all starts with the coach. And, I don't care how good of guy he is, you have to be a complete idiot to go for a 2 point conversion in that situation, with an offense that doesn't know where to find the goal line.

At some point a coach needs to disregard what a chart tells him and go with what he knows about his team.

The leading candidate for the head coaching position in Miami is Gregg Williams, defensive coordinator of the New Orleans Saints. That's right, you heard it here first!
If Ross wants to hire a guy who still has the fire burning and doesn't want to take a chance on a guy who would be coming out of retirement and not give it his all Williams would be the top candidate.
So, there. I've said my peace. If I were Stephen Ross the man at the top of my list would be Gregg Williams, not Bill Cowher.

Thanks Blog Fodder, wasn't sure if those guys were out there or not.

That said, I STILL think the team is Sucking for Luck. Like you said, the 2-point conversion attempt (by us), AND their 2-pt. conversion, which everyone knew was going to be a run.

How do you account for that if it's not deliberate?


Does Gregg Williams even have a top rated defense with the Saints?

Whoever posted it- get real- Marshall is not going to fetch a 1st rounder. WR's rarely return 1st rounders...Boldin didn't - Moss in his prime didn't.Dieon Branch did, but that was dysfunctional Seahawks organization being fleeced by a shrewd New England club. Miami is not shrewd. Marshall - is not , has not played like Marshall years 1-4 in Denver. Throw in all the drops, the psychological diagnosis and no way are you getting a 1st rounder for him. Besides the trade deadline passed last week. Nothings happening until after the season anyway. Sorry to take away your toys but you are going to have to find a some other creative outlet for your pouting other than being the worlds greatest GM who trades your castoffs for everybody elses 1st rounders. Discuss, rant as you see fit. I'm gonna grab some black coffee and chase it with some booze. Sincerely, Ed Pope.

Haven't we learned this before? If Cowher says it isn't about the money, it about the money! And if he got over Ross's chasing Harbaugh he'll get over this.

Also, players SHOULD be saying (even privately) they are sucking for Luck.

If they're not, how troubling is that? If these guys are really trying their hardest, what's that say about keeping ANY OF THEM? Like Joe Schmoe said, what's that say about your talent level if you're playing like this? It's not ALL on the Coaches.

At this rate, the only players I'd be willing to keep on the team next year are Brandon Fields, maybe Carpenter, and I guess a handful from either side of the ball (Long, Pouncey, Thomas, Wake and Jimmy Wilson). 7 players from a 53-man roster.

Do the players really want the World to know they're trying?


This post doesn't mean a lot really perception of Ross was already skeptical when he went after Harbaugh in January when Sparano was still the coach. Cowher has said, he wants to go somewhere which gives him the best chance to win well it's not Miami look at the roster.
I want to go somwhere that gives me the best chance to win makes no sense only bad teams are searching for new coaches. It's called building a winner Bill another words Cowher is a dinosaur just like Parcells is.We need a young coach with drive and enthusiasum.

Dear Mr. Salguero

My brother and sisters of Dolphin land, let go of your high expectations for NFL wins, for it will only bring you sadness and sorrows.

We the chosen fans have wandered in mediocrity for many years and have endured many a loss.

We have suffered under the false football gods of Parcells, Saban, Johnson and others who all promised the glory of NFL championships.

we worshipped them as they stole our gold and fled as our team crumbled to the ground.

Do not envy the false prohet of Denver, for I say have faith, for a day will soon be apon us when Moses Sparano will lead us to the promised LUCKland where our franchise quarterback awaits us.

So it was written, The Book of Dolphins

Soiled :)


I made the mistake of reading your hype yet again...

Look, stop manufacturing garbage that has absolutely NO SUBSTANCE. You are trying to create a story where there isn't one. Much like last weeks Marshall interview...

Ross was doing nothing more than being a polite host to the coach of the Gators who was recognized during halftime.

Guess what? Ross has talk to Don Shula from time to time too...

Give me a break with this hype, and please, don't start with the "sources" and putting words in Cowher's mouth when you can not substantiate them. It's like an "unquoted" quote and that's not very professional.

Mando, much like the phrase in Dragnet: "The facts ma'am, just the facts"


Too silly!

Didn't Ross invite Meyer to participate in the gator event? Why the hell shouldn't he be cordial with his guest?

Non story.

Greg Williams? He makes sparano look like Lombardi.

DC, did I hear you ask for the best hands to be out there then ask for Brandon Marshall?????

Strength of schedule used for draft purposes tiebreaker is the current year records.

I have no problem in Suck for Luck! I welcome the notion! Miami needs a new everything! Ross is the least of my worries. He will spend time dollar for a glitz and glamour coach but also a proven winner not some fraud over glorified, not qualified position coach. By all means keep him for remainder of the season. You have to be a horrible coach to foul that up yesterday! He gives Miami the best chance in Suck for Luck. Indy, Rams, Jags all may stink just as bad but Sparano gives us a chance at a legit top 5 pick at worst.

Andrew Luck or Robert Griffith III will be Miami's next QB! It's very sad but is the only optimism I have in me but already looking forward to offseason.

If we get Andrew Luck next year, I'll be starting a campaign to put Matt Moore in our ring of All-Time Greats. He should become the highest paid player next year when we trade him to the worst team so THEY can get a #1 pick.

The guy can make millions being the Cooler. As soon as he gets on your team, you plummet to the bottom of the NFL, lol.

LOL, yeah Mark, I know. I realized after I wrote it I was thinking of the '09 Brandon Marshall, not the Dolphins version. Sorry.

If I was a candidate for the next Head Coach of the Dolphins, I would read garbage like this to see who was not going to have access to my locker room. Mando and his "creative bs" would be the first one I would have barred.

Seriously, this lack of professionalism and dramatic bs is exactly what I would be looking to keep away from my team. Let all his "sources" help him write his stories...

Mando has zero credibility, he never has FIRST HAND interviews, always speculation and "sources"...makes you wonder how he has a job.

DC, did I just read at 9:40 you saying Marshall was one of our best hands people? I thought you watched these games.

Ross is a nutcase would not want to work for a guy who is not helping me out as the head coach and is just concerned with filling stands and making dumb moves to do it. First if you want to fill the stands in Miami you got to win baby. Miami is not some place up north where the fans show up regardless of the teams record. No 1 pm games which "should" give the Dolphins the advantage come on. Next why in the world would you honor your opponents quarterback along with one of your home teams rivals? What a dunce. What loyalty there might have been among Miami fans Ross is undermining in Miami. Even Marinio a huge Miami fan made comments on the air about this so it is a problem. You can go hide your head in the sand and say what you want but Ross is acting like a nutcase with this team and reminds me of another Al Davis who keeps meddling in their team enough that they never win until he is out of the picture.

If Stephen Ross wants a head coach who can get into the heads of these players Uban Myer will not be a coaching candidate for this team.
Jim Harbaugh is a successful coach in San Francisco because he played in the NFL. Players respect that. College head coaches who did not play at the NFL level and did not previously coach at the NFL level have a tough time dealing with the egos of professional players.
If Miami is going to hire someone from the college ranks to coach this team it needs to be a former player or someone with former NFL coaching experience. Otherwise, it's a losing situation right from the beginning.
So, if you're looking for a coaching candidate from the college ranks look for former NFL players and guys with former NFL coaching experience.

Billick, Brian Billick. Now. Right now. wait no longer. Hire him mid season and let him evaluate who he wants and then re build asap in draft. This is why you fire Tony now. Hire Billick mid season and lose whatever...but the way i see it, Billick has more evaluation time and thse players now must audition for a new coach since they FUUUUUUUKKKDDD tony sparano.

How about that Columbo block yesterday? You know, the one wear he did the ole "saloon door" as the LB smashed Moore and he fumbled to setup Denver's winning FG?

Nice pickup there Jeffy and Tony...bet he made you proud...

EPIC disaster. This is a joke.

Brian Billick, lol, funniest post all day...

Just what we need, an arrogant coach...

We have an arrogant one now, he's just keeping it low key because he can't win a game lol...

Its either Fisher or Cowher, anything less would be....uncivilized...

So talking to a guy on the sideline is "disrespecting" your current coach?

Jesus. Sensitive much?

Seems to me from the schedules below that the Dolphins have a tougher schedule and the best possibility of going win less.

Colts have 5 games that are possible wins and the Rams have 5 games that are possible wins. IMO the Dolphins have 1.
30Oct NO vs STL
6Nov STL vs ARI
13Nov STL vs CLE
20Nov SEA vs STL
27Nov ARI vs STL
4Dec STL vs SF
12Dec STL vs SEA
18-Dec CIN vs STL
24-Dec STL vs PIT
1Jan SF vs STL
30Oct IND vs TEN
6Nov ATL vs IND
13Nov JAC vs IND
27Nov CAR vs IND
4Dec IND vs NE
11Dec IND vs BAL
18Dec TEN vs IND
22Dec HOU vs IND
1Jan IND vs JAC
30Oct MIA vs NYG
6Nov MIA vs KC
13Nov WAS vs MIA
20Nov BUF vs MIA
24Nov MIA vs DAL
4Dec OAK vs MIA
11Dec PHI vs MIA
18Dec MIA vs BUF
24Dec MIA vs NE
1Jan NYJ vs MIA

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