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Tony Sparano safe despite 'brutal' night

Tony Sparano is unlikely to be replaced this week, according to a source. And I'm starting to hate my job.

I hate that the Dolphins terrible 0-5 start is roosting directly in the doorstep of Sparano, a good man and a good coach who is not blameless for his team's record but also is not completely to blame for it either.

And so with each passing loss, the watch to determine if Sparano remains or goes grows more focused. And I am tasked with monitoring it.

And I hate it because I think a good coach is about to get whacked -- if not now, eventually, and almost certainly by the end of the season.

Monday night's loss to the Jets was especially harmful to Sparano's tenure. His team lost in horrible fashion. After a bye week. Against a team that had lost three in a row.

"Tonight was brutal," a club source told me.

And that is bad for coach because owner Stephen Ross, who last week gave him something of a midseason vote of confidence, was apparently very, very disappointed. Again. And the disappointment was augmented by the fact Ross sees it as something of another home loss because New York is his home.

"It is fair to say that the fuse is burning," the source told me.

However, the fact this is a short week, with the Dolphins returning to the field on Sunday only five days from now, makes a change significantly less likely, the source said.

So coach is safe for another week despite not being able to coax a victory from his team all season.

I know you guys don't care one way or another about Sparano because he's not a person to you. He's simply the guy you see on the sideline and the guy you see as not giving you something good to cheer about and feel good about. You transfer your frustration to him.

I get that. His team stinks. So he stinks.

But I don't believe he stinks. He's still the same guy that got the Dolphins to 11-5 in 2008. And he is a person. He has a family. And, unlike other Dolphins coaches that I believed to be somewhat inept and in need of replacing, I don't share that feeling about Sparano.

So following this story is not fun for me. Nonetheless the job will get done. That's the reason you come here.

(And now I'm sure your comments will discuss what a sap I am. So be it.)

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One more thing: Stephen Ross is not a football guy. I think the Miami Dolphins are like a yacht to him. Fun to drive around and party on for a while, then sell it later.
So much of the franchise's "commitment" is elsewhere, not to winning.
I remember when the SF 49ers were winning Super Bowls with Joe Montana and Steve Young, an interview with DeBartolo, and others and they talked about how everyone in the organization, from secretaries to janitors on up, had a commitment to excellence. That's what it takes.

Ireland needs to go too....He brough in what exactly to work with?????

I don't see how you can say sparano is a good coach! The offensive line is AWFUL! Miami has had red zone problems since last year! As a coach he is inept and lost! The fact he has a family is immaterial. And WHY should he not be fired this week?! Whats gonna happen if they fire him? Miami is 0-5 and not likely to win a single game this year!!!!! Now all I have to cheer is for Indy and St. Louis to win a game!

I know you guys don't care one way or another about Sparano because he's not a person to you. He's simply the guy you see on the sideline and the guy you see as not giving you something good to cheer about and feel good about. You transfer your frustration to him.
------------------------------------------------------

Armando.......

GO CRY IN SOMEBODY ELES'S BEER.....I HOPE ROSS FIRES YOU AT THE END OF THE SEASON......

This is perhaps tghe most pathetic post i have EVER read.....

Sporano is a MILLIONAIRE YOU DOOF.....EFF himm....and EFF you too for trying to pull on some fans heart strings....

dam you pissed me off this morning......

What a piece of S**t this season has become. We are not even half way and already the season is over. The guy that needs to be replace today is IRELAND. Get a great GM to sign now. Let him do all the evaluating and bring in a new HC after the season. Don't be mad if it isn't Cowher. Bring in a Fisher. He is not a control freak. Go get him better groceries and let him do his thing. IRELAND MUST GO !!!!

They didn't go 11-5 with Sparano. They went 11-5 with Chad Pennington. We over-achieved. It was the biggest mistake in the world, and I said it a long time ago.

We took a losing team in the infancy of rebuilding, and made it win. Pennington was the clear leader and pulled a ragtag group of offensive players together. The wildcat was installed and Ronnie Brown did the rest. The opposite is great is good.

So we're left with that legacy - drafts empty of offensive talent, no quarterback, no leadership, and piling up big guys for an outdated 3-4 defense. We almost seem in transition, to a smaller faster team, but not yet a team.

As far as Brandon Marshall, he was a plug-and-play receiver. He needed an offense that actually worked for him to be a star. The last quarterback he had any chemistry with was Pennington, and he's gone. There was no receiver opposite Marshall, no running back, no wildcat, no tight ends. We were better off NOT getting Marshall if we were not going to pick up more playmakers on that side of the ball.

Armando,

You have now written several times recently that Sparano is a good coach.

PUHLEASE!

Can you explain that? It's a mystery to me. Tell us why you say that. He may be liked by his players, but what makes him good?

Strikes me that Ross doesn't know a football from a goofball. I would disband the 'Fins now and try to forget we ever had pro Football in Miami.

0-16 or bust! Continue to Suck for Luck!!!

Sparano doesn't deserve to be coaching this team right now. I don't care if he's a nice guy, this is business and he is part of the problem. This team is not well coached PERIOD! That is Sparano's fault. The awful game decisions. That is Sparano's fault. We should NOT be 0-5 with this team. He has to go if Ross wants to even remotely save some part of a connection with the fan base.

As far as Brandon Marshall, he was a plug-and-play receiver. He needed an offense that actually worked for him to be a star. The last quarterback he had any chemistry with was Pennington, and he's gone.

Posted by: Samantha | October 18, 2011 at 06:39 AM

Marshall never played with Pennington.

Sporano is not the same guy that took The Dolphins to the AFC East title. Then he was an exuberant newly hired head coach. This year he's a coach looking over his shoulder after every game, afraid to make a mistake. (And without the Wildcat).

What about the first drive where it was 4th and inches at the Jests 40? You are 0-4. and you punt instead of going for it.? C'mon man!!!

Can someone tell Clyde Gates the if he takes a knee on a kickoff in the endzone that the offense starts at the 20. I'm tired of this guy running it out to the 14.

The game was lost in the first drive after the 3rd and inches. Why pass? Why not give the ball to D. Thomas for an easy first down? Or maybe a QB sneak. The mentality should be to use the clock methodically. In the good old day's Miami took the ball on the opening drive and typically scored a TD while using 7-8 minutes of the 1st quarter.

CP and the WIldcat, which was NOT Sparano's idea, got the team to the playoffs.

Suck for Luck? The word suck implies that you have to try to, or attempt to do the sucking. Miami doesn't have to try to lose. They will lose without the attempt.

Armando, no offense, but if I want a "good man" to coach the Dolphins I'll call the Nobel Peace Prize Winner or something. A good coach? How does telling your GM to go hard after Marc Colombo make you a good coach? He watched tape? Laughable. How does making Reggie Bush run up the middle make you a good coach? The ENTIRE WORLD knows that's not the way to use Bush, that he would get hurt (he did yesterday, a neck injury apparently) and yet he stick's with it, clueless like you wouldn't believe. A good coach? How about the state of our o-line, the biggest weakness on our roster. Year 3 and it still sucks. He's supposed to be an o-line coach. Laughable. No offense Armando, he might be a good person, but a good coach, that's totally retarded. Don't agree at all. It's time for Bill Cowher in 2012.

The Dolphins are in a pickle. If they continue to suck for Luck, they will lose their fan base. The only ones in the stands will be fans for the visiting team. If they change coaches and try to win, they'll miss out on Luck.

TUNA + TS + CP = 11-5
TUNA + (TS - CP) + CH = 7-9
TUNA + TS + CH (with Nolan) = 7-9
TUNA + TS + (CH + MM) = 0-5
Another formula BB + TB = 3SB; BB - TB = 11-5
ergo Quality of coach and quality of qb affect results more than GM. Recognizing talent is one of the biggest roles a coach has--including coaches hired as VP of football operations. BB gets more than expected from cast-offs and unheard of players. JI + TS cannot get the team out of the wet paper bag that envelopes them.

NFL is really a small world and other 'BIGS' like Cowher, Gruden, et. al. don't want to go to parties as THE GUY that removed the stink of rotten tuna from South Beach.

No, the new leadership for South Beach Dolphins will have to be from "outside" NFL. Harbaugh-esque, from college ranks. Which may prove to be the quickest path to glory. Former Coaches on TV are not the answer IMHO.

They need to take the offensive play list away from Sparano. I believe he is calling the plays at least in the red zone. Why do we continue to try throwing to Brandon Marshal down there. Is that in his contract!

One of your dumbest post ever, Armando.
Did you cry for Gibril Wilson's wife when we cut him for not doing his job?
Sparano is not a NFL head coach. Period.

I don't know how you can say he is a good coach Armando, MAYBE SOMEDAY HE WILL GET ANOTHER CHANCE WHERE HE CAN COACH SOME PLAYERS WITH SOME HEART, BUT HIS PLAYERS HAVE QUIT ON HIM. AND ALSO THEY JUST DON'T HAVE THAT MUCH TALENT, THE GUYS IN THE SECONDARY REALLY SUCK AND OUR RECEIVERS CAN'T CATCH WHEN WE REALLY NEED ONE, BUT PUT ALL THAT ASIDE TONY HAS MADE MANY MISTAKES HE COULD NOT BE CONSIDERED A GOOD COACH CALLING TIMEOUTS WHEN THEY SHOULDN'T, EVALUATING PLAYERS SUCH AS RESHARD JONES AND NOLAN CARROL SEAN SMITH, THESE GUYS CAN'T PLAY A LITTLE BIT, AND LETS NOT FORGET 8 LOSSES IN A ROW AND SOME OF THOSE GAMES COULD HAVE BEEN WON WITH A BETTER COACH AND COACHING JOB, HE IS WAY TO CONSERVATIVE REMINDS ME OF WANNY, BUT ACTUALLY WANNY WAS A BETTER COACH, HE DESERVES TO BE FIRED AND I AM SORRY I DON'T CARE ABOUT THE FAMILY THEY WILL BE FINE ONCE HE IS FIRED REMEMBER HE IS A MULTIMILLIONAIRE FOR BEING THIS BAD , HE HAS TO GO RIGHT AWAY AND THEY SHOULD THROW IRELAND OUT THE DOOR AS WELL HE STINKS TOO!!!

sparano hasnt "earned" his paycheck. he cuts players weekly;he should face the same situation. its obvious the team has "mailed it in".mike nolan should be appointed interim coach to see if he can get the team to start playing again.

DC Dolfan once wrote me (in jest) a few weeks ago....he made jokes about occupy Miami....and we lol'ed and other Odinseye random letter combinations....

Well the time for jokes has past....

Occupy the PHINS.....Occupy the stadium....
I want MY TEAM BACK.....

Fire Ireland and Sparano immediately to begin erasing the disgusting taste of the Parcells era. In spite of how bad the D has been, make Nolan the interim coach to finish off the winless season and start looking for a competent GM and new HC for next year. Ireland and Sparano are the high profile symbols of complete failure and must go NOW! I wish we could lose Ross too, but that ain't gonna happen.

Sparano is not a good HC, Ireland is clueless...PERIOD!!!
"Suck for Luck" yes but, suck so we can get rid of the above mentioned...PLEASE Mr. Ross!!!

please Mr.Cuban buy the Phins.

With ten seconds to go, the game clearly over, Sparano allows the qb to drop back for a useless pass, risking injury. That kind of stupidity is reason enough to fire him!

I agree that Sparano is not the best coach as far as decision making and gameday coaching but look at the crap he is working with. No QB,receivers who drop or fumble everything and a defense that can't stop anybody. Their is not enough toilet paper for the 53 pieces of crap that he coaches.

NO he's not the 11-5 guy. He's an 0-5 guy. Period. He SUCKS. Exhibit A: Jim Harbaugh doing what Mike Singletary could not with the SAME talent.

Coaching matters. 11-5 was an ABERRATION of a soft schedule.

From looking at the sideline last night you could tell that Sparano has lost this team. This team has no heart. We need to clean house starting with Ireland who's evaluation of talent and his personnel decisions leave much to be desired.

I think the time for second, third and fourth chances are over for Sparano. I watched the whole, miserable game and 3 hours of my life that I'll never get back. The ineptitude is the result of poor coaching at all levels. Matt Moore did his job. Everyone else did not. Too many dropped balls, too many mistakes and the defense faded after the first 20 minutes of the game. This all has to do with inadequate coaching, inadequate training and inadequate conditioning. The old adage states that you can't fire the whole team, so the head coach shoulders that responsibility for his teams sloppy play and lack of focus. Pro football is big business and people with families lose their jobs every day. I don't feel sorry for him, after all he had his 4 years to secure his job, but he slid backwards. I say FIRE SPARANO NOW!!!

SPARANO MIGHT BE A GOOD MAN and that's cool. BUT WE'RE TALKING PRO FOOTBALL! The bottomline is winning! He might be a good coach but not a HEAD COACH. I even question is O-LINE ability NOW, his speciality.
And a QUICK FACT ABOUT THE 11-5 YEAR....WITHOUT THE WILDCAT GIMMICK FOR THAT YEAR, WHICH CAUGHT TEAMS OFF GUARD, THEY NEVER WOULD HAVE SNIFFED THE PLAYOFFS!!!!! 1 YEARDOESN'T MAKE A GOOD COACH!! I FAULT HIM FOR HIS STATEGY IN GAMES, I FAULT IRELAND FOR THE SORRY PERSONNEL and I FAULT ROSS FOR STAYING WITH THEM THIS LONG!!

We're way beyond Sparano having pictures of Ross in Vegas with some prostitutes type blackmail to keep his job!!!! We're in the neighborhood of Sparano knowing about people with concrete shoes in Biscayne Bay that Ross put there type blackmail!!!!!!

Do you really think we'd be 0-5 if Harbaugh had become coach?

a good coach, are you F------ Kidding me
1st drive 3rd and less then 1 .....
2 downs to make less then 1

Then to punt the ball at their 40 on 4th down
We are 0-4 at this point....go for it

He is a horrible coach that plays for 3 points
Points are being left out there in every game.

Andrew Luck will refuse to play here if drafted like John Elway and Eli Manning did. This team is a mess.

The question is "why not replace Sparano now"? The team is 0-5, can a new coach or interum coach do any worse? No one made much of an effort last night, so somethings very wrong in the locker room. These players saw what happened last January and they know Sparano is out the door, so why the pretenses? Get a new coach NOW. Ross has enough money to attract a new YOUNG head coach and no retreads.

HEY ARMANDO WHAT DO YOU CALL A COACH THAT LOSES 8 GAMES IN A ROW A GOOD COACH? YOU CAN'T BE SERIOUS

hey guys stop blaming Ross

Tony has lost the last 8 games straight
Not Ross!!!!!!!

I was happy owner owner recognized Tony is a failure that was handed the job by his older brother Bill....

Sound familiar... Jimmy and Dave

Come on Mando, this guy can't manage the clock. Never throws out the red flag to challenge a bad call. He not only looks inept, he is inept. I understand he is only human, but week in week out with see the same old crap that just doesn't work for this team. He's also made poor decisions with personnel, kept some only to get rid of them the following week or vice versa. One can only hope that Ross finally nails this coffin shut today!

Sporanus a good coach? You've got to be shi**ing me! He needs to be fired immediately just to save some dignity. His partner Jeff Idiotland just needs to disappear to another country ASAP!. Marshall needs to be traded for practically anything any team will offer. And owner Ross, if he's from New York, please let him go back there perminantely to buy the Jets so he can destroy that franchise.

Oh and please take Ireland with him. The only guy that Ireland got right was D Thomas and he's played in 3 games. Giving R Bush all that money made no sense. Using him as a premier back only makes these guys look stupid. I say clean house, get someone in here next year that can motivate. On the player side can they just keep their mouths shut. I think they might do better by showing us what they can do on the field.

They are just letting Tony rot...they have already paid him, plus there is no one to replace him. Football is about Money.

Dolphin Fans need to send a real message. Everybody needs to stay home from the rest of the games and not buy any more Dolphin apparel for the rest of the season. I realize season ticket holders don't want to feel like they are getting nothing but when you go to the game you spend more money on parking and concessions. Let Mr. Ross feel the results of pinching his money and put a poor product on the field. I have been a fan since 1966 and have never seen such a poor excuse for a team.

Tony Tony Tony has done it again

Dear Mr. Salguero

I understand what your article is trying to do.

I understand coach Sparano is a likeable man in person.

Fact is he is embarrasing the Dolphins.

Sparano is like a family member with a learning disability.

He wears one of the special helmets to protect his head for when he gets over excited does a fist pump and falls on the ground.

Neighbors look out there windows and say there's that Miami coach walking around outside unsupervised with a helmet on his head.

Coach Sparano has HEAD COACH special needs and we as a Dolphin family should do whats best for the Dolphins.

Ship Coach Sparano off to Dallas along with his slightly less learning impaired sibling Jeff Ireland...Jerry Jones is familier with there handicaps and special needs.


Soiled :)

80% of the problem with the Fins is due to Ross/Ireland's bad choices, 20% due to Sparano. Last summer they left him out to dry, dangling in the wind when they went out to CA. He is a decent coach, but his FO stabbed him in the back and then told him to go ahead and coach this year. If they were going to look for someone else in a public way, then MAKE A Change right then and GO with it! The players Ireland has brought in this year are for most part- POOR. So MOST of blame does not have to do with Sparano. The players not performing well is another BIG part of the problem.

I've always liked your honesty Armando. I do think Sporano's time is up, but I think the whole front office needs to be revamped, AND Ross has to come off some dough.

Honestly I fell for Sparano because I believe that his hands are tied somewhat. He will be let go eventually when Ross decides he got his money’s worth from the guy, but I doubt it will happen before say week 10 or so. He was placed in a bad spot January when Ross and Ireland flew off to court Harbaugh and most of the woes we are suffering this season is due to that. Everything has snowballed to this and it will likely not get any better for us. Now, having defended the man because he was placed in a bad spot, I have to say a lot of the blame is on him. His teams are not coached to win and lack that killer factor that good NFL teams have. Ask yourself when was the last time we blew out another team? We never do that, and in fact in order for us to win the team has to play a nearly perfect game. Blame that on personnel if you wish but does Miami not have the talent to beat Cleveland, at home? A good coach can inspire the men around him to play to a higher level. His teams don’t do this, they play down to the level of the opponent and lack the mental toughness to knock the other team out of the game or even stay in games when down a few scores. They don’t know how to win and I think it’s because Tony has instilled a don’t play like you have to win, play not to lose mentality in this locker room. The whole of Sparano’s thought process can be summed up the decision to run out the clock with 1:10 left while owning a timeout before the half despite being down on a must win game. At that point in the game NY was not firing on all cylinders and Miami should have gone for the kill but didn’t. What did they have to lose? A turnover? Sure, something bad could have happened but the point is you’re up against a wall, why not fight back? The man had his shot, he had 4 years to prove himself and without the dumb luck of having Pennington drop out of the sky in 08, he’s had a losing record each season. Twice in the past 4 years his teams have been in a position to get into the playoffs but then tanked it against sorry opposition. None of this is a sign of a well coached team and one does not need to know the X’s and O’s of football to notice this.

As a fan it’s so sad to see your team be mocked, belittled, and laughed at but they deserve it. Looking at the rest of the season what games can they win? Maybe the Denver game since they have clearly cashed in, maybe Kansas City but not much more. They’ll probably squeak out a win or two but he season is over, it was over when they lost to Cleveland 3 weeks in. Tony is not 100 percent to blame for this, Ireland, Parcells and Ross all share the blame but he is the head coach and the face us fans have to hear from when they lose. Week after week after week they lose and we hear the same things, like a looped tape and it gets tiresome and frustrating. Ultimately he and his family will be fine, so don’t feel too bad for the guy and he will likely get another shot as a coordinator, assistant or position coach in the NFL. His ego and reputation might take a hit but the man will live, and be better off financially that 99% of the fans he and his teams have disappointed.

Let Sparano finish the year. Unfortunately we need to keep losing now. Season is over. Dont let the players rally around an interim coach and ruin the chance of getting Luck. I was hoping that if we won 1 game this year, it would have been against the jets. But as usual, we sucked it in the 2nd half. We are the laughing stock of the league from the owner to the players. The cheerleaders are the only ones worth watching. Just keep the camera on them the whole game. A lot better than the joke of a team thats pretending on the field. Marshall sucks. Trade him away. If they want to pay me to drop passes, I will gladly do it, and be damn good at it too!

Yes Sparano has a family, but he is a millionaire and is better off than most and can probably never work another day in his life and he and his family will be fine! So don't throw that nonsense at us! He might be a good guy, but this team is out coached and outplayed every week. A lot of these players (including Henne) played better as rookies, but were eventually coached down! Players love their rah rah coaches, but they never do well.

I just get tired of seeing him clap for failures in the red zone or dead zone for us. Please dont tell me how great a guy he is or his family and all that. You accept this when you get paid the dollars of an NFL head coach. We need a change. Maybe he can be a successful asst coach at FIU in the future.

Mando - just read your article. I agree with you that Sparano is a good coach. I feel like he peaked with this team after beating Carolina in a Thursday night in 2009. After that, it has been all downhill. Ross is the one who cut this guy off at the knees. You have been around teams long enough to know that the players know what we know - our coach is the owners second or third choice. Ross tried to combat this by signing Sparano to an extension, but the damage was done. The same thing happened when that fat fraud Jimma Johnson quit in January and then came back - the payers knew he wasn't coming back after that season - he had a real good team that year, barely made the playoffs and then got steamrolled in the most embarrassing defeat in Dolphins history 62-2 (or whatever it was). Sparano, although a good coach (and who probably gets more from the players he has than most coaches)….has zero chance this year.

Mando - Sparano is a good man... guilty of some bad coaching decisions on occasion but a good coach and man nonetheless.
It's unfortunate, he was handed a bag of goods and probably knew it going into the season but toughed it out and kept his mouth shut...
Hope the Fins put him out of his misery soon enough and he lands somewhere else where he leads a winning program. Think he has the right stuff as a coach but he was never really given the horses to compete in this league

The last time Miami won a Super Bowl:
Richard Nixon was President
South Vietnam still existed
The Godfather Part II had still not been released
Michael Jackson was a 15-yr.-old black kid
Israel had just won the Yom Kippur War
Dan Marino was in grade-school

Gee, what a "historic" franchise.

dont say change...last I heard of that...our country gets flushed down the toilet..Change lol lmao

A good coach? lol, Epic Fail, Mandy. No wonder nobody buys your crappy newspaper anymore, bro. I bet if you had it your way the greaser would be here indefinitely. What a great writer you are, dude. Don't know what we'd do without ya.

A nuclear bonb needs to go off in the front office and fallout needs to reach EVERY individual that has anything to do with the organization. Ross needs to fire everyone at the end of the season...he needs to give someone with minimal ego who will have the keys to the place-and not someone at the end of the career as a builder but at the prime of their career. Everybody thinks SF just became good over night and Jim Harbough is why..they had a lot of pieces in place before this season..they drafted Crabtree and the two starting offensive linemen last year and the defensive monster this year that is a leading candidate for defensive rookie of the year. Harbough is not stupid-he saw that and this is why he chose SF over Miami-Ross needs to do what Snyder did in Wash-sit back and watch the guys he trusted to hire make him millions by re-establishing pride in the brand..right now the Dolphins brand is embarassing and I at times am ashamed to be a Dolphins fan!!!!!

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