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Could Ryan Mallett have made a difference for Miami?

This season is lost. I believe that. I've written that. The Dolphins record screams that.

And the primary reason this season is lost and Tony Sparano and his team have less than half a chance every game day is because they are starting a backup quarterback and acting like he's legit. He is not.

Look, Matt Moore is a nice guy. He is a guy you can bring into a game in an emergency and compete for a couple of quarters. But if you're asking your football team to go into games against Eli Manning, Tom Brady, Phillip Rivers, Michael Vick, Tony Romo, Carson Palmer and even Ryan Fitzpatrick with Moore as your comparable weapon, you are battling cruise missles with a popgun.

The last team to do that, the Carolina Panthers, finished its season with the worst record in the NFL. And that's the same track the Dolphins are traveling now with Moore.

Frankly, this is a team that tries hard but simply does not have enough talent at the most important position on the field to compete with just about anyone else. No one on the coaching staff will admit it. No one in the locker room will say it publicly.

But everyone knows this to be true.

Here's another truth: There are a handful of college teams with better quarterbacks right now than the Miami Dolphins.

That is not exaggeration. Think about that.

Moore is a 65.3 rating passer. He's thrown only one touchdown and four interceptions in his time at the helm of the Miami offense.

Nothing personal against him, but everyone except the Dolphins knew he was not good enough when he was signed. And he has so far proven that. (Nice job, personnel department!)

And that leads to the logical question: What might have happened for Miami this year if general manager Jeff Ireland had picked enigmatic Arkansas quarterback Ryan Mallett in the April draft?

I don't know. No idea, actually.

But the question is a fair one because I seriously doubt Mallett, the best arm in the draft including Cam Newton, would give the Dolphins the same hopeless feeling you get watching Moore.

Think about that.

Mallett came out in a draft where he was considered more or less the on-field equal of most any of the QBs that were taken ahead of him. He sank because of his off-field issues, none of which we really can put a finger on completely. On-field, the pundits said he was better than Andy Dalton, for example, and a better passer than Cam Newton -- and you know what they're doing these days.

Mallett was selected by New England in the third round with the 74th overall pick.

The Dolphins passed on him twice -- in the first round, and then again in the second round when they traded up to the 60th overall selection to take running back Daniel Thomas. Thomas is so far a nice player when he's healthy. But as durability is a factor one must weigh when judging a player, the fact he's missed three games raises questions about him.

No, Mallett hasn't played in New England so we have no idea what kind of pro he would be. But he'd be a work in progress. He'd be a player the Dolphins could hope to squeeze improvement out of. His pedigree and arm certainly suggests he'd be as good as Moore in the short-term and much better as he gains experience.

With Mallett on the team, the Dolphins might still be a poor team, I grant you that. They might even be winless. But we'd be busy measuring his progress rather than hoping he and his teammates continue a winless spiral that would lead to Andrew Luck.

The Dolphins, in fact, did not draft Mallett. General Manager Jeff Ireland basically stalked the kid -- watching him at every workout and practically every game he played -- and could not find a comfort level with him.

That's a decision GMs get paid to make. Ireland will have to live with that one one way or the other for a long time to come -- depending on how good Thomas becomes relative to Mallett.

At the time he was unable to add Mallett or any other QB in the draft, Ireland set his sights on free agency or a trade to get a QB. He tried vainly to trade for both Carson Palmer and Kyle Orton but ultimately landed no one who could compete for a starting job with Chad Henne.

That was a gamble. It was a gamble Henne would be improved so much he could be solid. It was also a gamble Henne could stay healthy. The Dolphins rolled snake eyes on the latter.

And so they are left with Moore as the starter even though everyone knows he is not starter quality. And they are left rummaging the discards list of unemployed QBs for backups.

Sad isn't it? Pathetic, actually that an NFL team has no answer at the most important position on the field three games into the season when the starter gets hurt.

Ryan Mallett may not have been the answer in the long term because we don't know what his development will be or would have been.

But if the Dolphins had picked him, at least the QB they put on the field every week might have given them more of a chance to win now. Instead, you sense this helpless feeling over this team.

Oh, what might have been.


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"because they are starting a backup quarterback and acting like he's legit"

You could have started off better then that. Only a fool would think that.If it was the case he would have been allowed to challenge Henne, he was not. Only GIVEN the job after another season ending injury to our starting qb. Now thats a number id like to know, how many times has our starting qb gone on season ending ir in the last decade

hmmm,sounds like a-man ticked off some of the wrong ppl.Go fins!

If Tom Brady. Aaron Rodgers, and Cam Newton were available tomorrow, Ireland would pass on all of them. He couldn't recognize talent if it was stuck in his rectum.

I think you're right Joe T. For an NFL franchise to neglect the most important position in the league like Ireland has is borderline abuse of its fans. What the f**k difference does a centre or running back make to a team if they are handing the ball off to a joke?? No chance for this team every week.

Now I can't believe I'm saying this but Ireland allegedly did the diligence on this guy and Mallett allegedly had some issues with illegal drugs, and isn't very bright or mature.

If those three things are true it is fair to wonder a) whether he'd be getting his head handed to him on Sundays if he didn't prepare b) whether the team would play hard around him if he's a knucklehead c) whether he'd find some trouble on South Beach as opposed to a sleepy hamlet in New England if he was suddenly the starting QB if the Dolphins 3 games into his rookie season d) if the Dolphins would be any better off than they are today at 0-7?

Disclaimer, given his track record I don't trust Ireland's judgement but the question is as much whether or not they were exhaustive in their search, which clearly they were not, and whether that would/should cost he and Sparano their jobs, which clearly it will.

They (and Ross!) made this bed...

He'd still be a dead man because he can't run away. Run away from that oline that so full of holes, granma in a wheel chair could get through and put a lick on a qb.

Not to mention that we needed a rb. So we could have drafted Ingram and then went and got Mallett in the second round and then whatever they picked up later. Oh yeah we traded away second round for Brandon Marshall. The guy we were all screaming for and a guy that has played like a second rounder.

I am not an Ireland fan. But in this case considering he needed a back and a center he did what he could. Looking back at this we are whining on a coulda, woulda, shoulda and Malette hasn't even started a game. Luck isn't even in the NFL and we are fawning all over the guy like he is the next Marino. Sure, the odds are he is going to be a great qb. He might get drafted and not even sign.

I know I would think twice about signing for a team that allows 265 lb linebackers to take free shots at me and has Tony Sparano and Jeff Ireland as running the show. 3rd and 15 with 2 minutes to go and he wants a draw play?

This team has probably the worst strength and conditioning program in the league. When you look at the number of players with hamstring injuries, alone, it is hard to pinpoint one player, like you did with Daniel Thomas, and question his durability.
Bring in people who know what they are doing (and there's no way you can say these people know what they're doing when you have all those hamstrings) and everything changes. The head coach did a pizz poor job of getting this team ready for the season and it shows in everything they do.
With all of the time that was available to these guys during the lockout they should have had a plan put together on how they were going to get everyone up to speed and ready to go. You can have all of the plays installed that you want but, if the players aren't ready from a physical standpoint, the plays aren't going to matter. They should have spent less time installing the plays by installing less of them before the season started and spent more time on having the team ready physically. Then, they could have installed more plays in practice during the season. They put the cart before the horse and, now, they're paying for it.

even Ryan Fitzpatrick? He's no joke this year.

This season kind of reminds me of the strike-shortened 1982 season. I'm wondering if some of the teams that are playing well are actually as good as their records and if some of the teams doing poorly are as bad as their records.
Let's take Ryan Fitzpatrick as an example. His career, to this point, hasn't been anything to be proud of. He pretty much sucked up to this year; even last season when he threw for 3,000 yds he had 23 td's but he also had 15 int's. He has a career rating of 77.1.
So, is this season going to be nothing but a mirage or are some of these players/teams for real?

I hate all that should coulda woulda BS. Fire Ireland and Morano. Get a real football coach in here. IDK Cowher, Fisher, Gruden. Any would be allot better than what we have now. Let him get our next franchise QB depending on where we draft Luck or Jones and this team will turn around quick.

The 'rumors' of Mallet's off-field issues were eerily reminiscent of Marino's...pot, ego, etc. and for anyone to wonder whether we did the right thing after seeing Bellicheck draft the guy? I would venture a guess to say the Pats have a bit more clue how to do things than Jeff Ireland. Mallet represented hope. D. Thomas represents hope that we got another mediocre RB like Ronnie Brown all over again, at best. The day Jeff Ireland & the Dallas connection is cut loose from Miami will signal the 1st sign of hope this franchise has had since 1996!

This is a poorly run franchise from ownership down to the personnel department. This team need a complete clean up. That means 3-4 seasons of rebuilding but with a bright future ahead. We are now in purgatory football. Not heaven, not hell, just stuck in the middle. That's the worst situation to be in. The only way is to explode the product pick up good survivors and clean the rest out. Now go get the people that know how to just that.

"They should have spent less time installing the plays by installing less of them before the season started and spent more time on having the team ready physically"

Thats on the players. They wanted and got only 16 contact practices a season and little to no practices in the offseason. They got more days off during bye weeks, rather then practice, so they can....take more time off.

I'm sorry, this is on the players. This year sparano said he was going to take it easier on his guys this year. If you remember players last year said he was 2 tough during practices. Trying something new, it failed. Blame the players.

Also, at least give Ireland credit for not mortgaging away our future before getting canned.
It would have crippled us in next years qb heavy draft had we traded up for anything this last draft or gave up picks for Orton or Kolb....hahaha.


Thomas will do well next year when Luck or Jones is Miami's new franchise QB (hope it's Luck) doesn't that sound great Franchise QB

I see you have new glasses and a live camera feed, all in preparation for next season's Live Practice report. Good.

Armando, Mallett will be an NFL bust, trust me. My source (CraigM) said so. LOL!!

It's worthless to talk about woulda, coulda, shoulda. If that was the case then we can argue that the team should have drafted Natt Ryan instead of Jake Long (who is playing average this season probably due to injury). The most important decision will come from Stephen Ross and who he chooses to run the peersonal department.

Why no give Devlin a chance?

Armando, I see you are now playing the "what if"

You, sir... Are an Idiot.

PS...you look fat on TV, you need to go on a diet

Now, now, boys, don't fight.

Fire Irland then sparano and make the quality control coach park cars at stadium to earn his pay...Bo

sparano and ireland needed to leave with parcells since they arrived together. our only hope now is that ross sells the team.

Let's see the hands of all those that wanted Mallett. Raise them high fellas. What's he doing now? 3rd string on the bench? Nice.

Anyone need a little hot sauce with their crow?

Might as well flip belly up and die, This Guy Ireland reminds of an SS officer, I hate the douche, I hate them all, including shula, I wish he would've drafted a QB to develope as Marino got old!

Ross, much like HWayne before him, tries very hard & really does want to do whats best & get the team straightened out. Unfortunately neither of them knows jack1 about the game. Until they (now just Ross) can find a competent personel guy they will continue to spin their wheels. Thats the problem with the big names like Cowher or Chucky. They will come in, much like Jimmie Johnson, Satan, FATuna, with their slate of demands when they've never been in the positions they will now assume control of. They know best because they were good coaches (well, not Chucky - he just rode Dungy's coat tails, then drove the Bucs into the ground)? They are not personel guys. They have not run franchises. But that ring is like "Lord of the Rings" and makes them feel empowered in ways they have no business feeling. Its funny how this entire 15 yr. fiasco started with a Dallas cast-off & 'hopefully' ends with more of the same. Ross needs to do his homework & research who the bright young minds of this league are before handing the reigns to yet another over-inflated ego thats fat & happy already and just looking for power in areas that are not their expertise.

Very knowledgeable and impartial, Mr Stockton.

Mike Pouncey might become a stellar player, but you don't waste the 15th pick overall in a center. We had a chance to draft Mallet in the 3rd round and we didn't. Mallet was my pick. Go check Universal Draft and see what they say about each and everyone of the QBs of this draft. And please to all the sport journalist, stop the complaining of having drafted Long instead of Ryan. At that particular moment, nobody and I mean nobody from draft experts to sport casters to sport writers gave a dime for Ryan, he was not consider a franchise QB to be drafted that high.

I'm watching ESPN2 right now and they're talking about should Indie trade P Manning if the colts have a chance to get Luck, I just hope we don't make that bone headed trade. If our past history with Ireland at the helm is any indication of what we would do, we better start saving our money for a fin jersey with the no. 18 on it. There is a history of QBs with an injury similar to Manning's that have not been the same afterwards. Even if Manning was healthy I still wouldn't want him, he would only be a temporary fix.

Oh yeah, I forgot to put this as my closing line on my 7:58 post. Fire Ireland so he can't make a trade like this.

I wanted Mallett during the draft. The fact was that Henne was going to be the starter. He had the 2011 season as his final year of his contract. He needed to prove that the 3 year investment the Dolphins made in him was going to reach pay dirt. In fairness, he took command of a new playbook with a new O-Coordinator. He showed progress. His first couple of games were solid, not great, but an improvement for sure. If he wasn't hurt he would be starting now. With or without Mallett.

But I think failing to invest, yet again, in the QB position was a bad move. At the time of the draft nobody was sure Henne would be improved. They failed to pick up Mallett in the 2nd round (would have been good use of the pick). Now we will never know how he would have done with the Fins. Regardless of how he does with the Pats we will NEVER know for sure.

That all said, the future is now in next year's draft class. The BIG QUESTION WE NEED TO ASK OURSELVES......Can WE be PATIENT and give a rookie QB THREE YEARS TO DEVELOP into a top flight QB?

We weren't patient with Henne. Would we have been patient with Mallet? Will we be patient with Luck or Barkely or Jones?

"Might as well flip belly up and die, This Guy Ireland reminds of an SS officer, I hate the douche, I hate them all, including shula, I wish he would've drafted a QB to develope as Marino got old!"

Dude don't hate on Shula he was a great coach and its not his fault we didnt get a QB to develop under Marino that falls on the Jimmy Johnson who pushed the running game and pushed it instead of using the pass to open up the run and he forced Marino out of the game without having a QB developing under Marino if u look at the history you would have known this . and the Dolphins need to rebuild and get a offensive line to protect there QB i think we do this there's only one QB in the draft that's good enough to be a franchise QB that's luck we draft him by trading up if we have to and we get a new head coach and get Fla off coordinator Weis to be off coordinator and also get Marino for QB coach and i think trade 1st and 2nd rd picks the following yr to go trade for Pouncey from pit and we would have the blind side covered on the line and go get a veteran QB to start and groom Luck for a few seasons till hes ready . we have to understand this is a rebuild and will take time . oh and we need to cut all ties to Dallas to cuz we keep getting there left overs including players and coaches and yes im including jimmy johnson in this to.
we need help on the Dl to and the draft will have to help this and the rest of the needs to until we have a good core of players to make a push for the playoff every yr then we can get sum high quality fa's to help cuz its no since in having them while u are rebuilding

And that is why Ireland should get the axe before Sparano.


stupid article. Mallet would have been just as bad with this coaching staff. give it a rest. we don't have mallet deal with what we have

Mr. Ross...you have a problem....it's your GM Jeff Irleand. He struggles to bring on top flight talent and it is killing YOUR team. A team being restructured to make the playoffs needs to get really solid starters from the draft.

But in the last three years the Dolphins have only gotten 3 solid starters that You and We can feel confident in; Pouncey, Thomas and Davis. After that it was a waste of time and YOUR money.

2011 Draft Class:
•C Mike Pouncey — Good solid pick - Nice Job
•RB Daniel Thomas — If he can stay healthy he should prove solid
•WR Clyde Gates — really raw, what is he doing for you really?
•FB/TE Charles Clay — Like him but he makes only one play a game. Maybe somebody should speak to Dabol abou that?
•NT Frank Kearse — Who?
•FS Jimmy Wilson — Nice tough guy, playing now but not well.

2010 Draft Class:
Jared Odrick - solid but nothing great
Koa Misi - How many sacks does he have? Was replaced by an old JT. Not good.
John Jerry - Who?
AJ Edds - Not on your team!
Nolan Carroll - Toast!
Reshd Jones - Always involved AFTER the WR catches the ball. Not a good player.
Chris McCoy - Who? Where is he now?
Austin Spitler - Special Teams player...Maybe?

2009 Draft Class:
Vontae Davis - Seems solid but hurt a lot, how many interceptions does he have in three seasons?
Pat White - Funny!
Sean Smith - Unfortunately he is starting and is HORRIBLE!
Patrick Turner - where is he now?
Brian Hartline - Pedestrian at best. How many TD's has he posted for you?
John Nalbone - Really?
Chris Clemons - Unfortunately our best option and he isn't healthy. Not a long term answer.
Andrew Gardner - seems solid but your O-Line Guru decided to make our RT a guard and Andy sits the bench.
JD Folsom - Who?

Mallet sucks. His intangibles were no where near Newton or Dalton. Anyone with the equivalent braincell of a squirrel could see that he had problems written all over him. To draft him over Daniel Thomas would have been the stupidest decision Ireland has made and that's saying alot. Mallet will never be elite I honestly see him falling out of the league all together within a couple years.

At this point I am glad we did not invest a high draft on a quarterback under this regime. Especially in the most recent draft. I don't trust their ability to evaluate talent or their ability to develop talent. Odds are that if we drafted Mallet our new coach/front office next year would want to draft their own guy and it would be another wasted pick.


I realize you've had this crush on Mallet since before the draft...but let's be honest: Matt Moore does not play on defense. The past two losses are a direct result of poor defensive play, not play of our qb.

I don't disagree with you; just really don't want to hear about Ryan Mallet. Who does not appear to be a nice guy.

Devlin should play...

Agreed Turd. That was a completely idiotic gamble by Ireland. On the Henne part, I was ok with it. Gamble that Henne would be better, fine. But how could they NOT have a QB competition, after what transpired at the QB position not just last year, not just the last 4 years with this FO, but over the last DECADE since Marino? That's a terminable offense to me RIGHT NOW. I'd rather have NO GM than the one we have.

ANY SMART FOOTBALL WATCHER was saying Miami needed to add another competent QB (whether in the Draft or in FA). Once Ireland chose not to do it in the Draft, he was basically saying it MUST happen in FA. And he failed miserably. And no, Orton might not have been the wise decision, but again, fans didn't put the team in that situation (Mallett or another QB would have cost less in the Draft). Ireland chose that.

And for that, poof, you're gone.

Armando, has it ever occurred to you that maybe, just maybe, these guys (Ireland and Sparano) aren't qualified to do the job?? Just sayin'...

Not only mallet, Dalton and kaepernick were there too. When you don't have a franchise qb, you should be drafting one every year until you get it right. No other position matters if your qb doesn't exist.

Please, can we have some basketball games. Mr. Stern don't be so greedy get the lockout over with and let's get the Miami-Heat going.

Good points DC and Montreal. They f'd it all up and now they lose. I don't care how nice they are or how hard working they are. They lacked adequate evaluation skills and foresight and they deserve to go for that reason.

Why don't we start Devlin? We know what we have in Matt Moore...The season is lost... What could he do that would be so wrong??? This coaching staff is clueless... Let Devlin, Mitchell and some other young guys play so we know what we have for next year..

Moore is not dropping all these passes. He has actually looked good so far.

Add all those drops back to his numbers and lets see what his rating would be then.

Good morning guys,

I am a big Ryan Mallet fan. He has an amazing arm and came out of a pro style offense. In the 2nd round when Miami traded up I stood up right in the middle of my TV with my eyes wide open and felt like someone kicked me in the balls when I heard they drafted Daniel Thomas of all people.

Miami passed on a QB with 1st round talent with questionable character, supposedly. They ignore the most important position on the field once again for a position that seems to be a dime a dozen unless you draft an elite back which there wasn't one in last years draft.

Never has Miami fans rooted against this team so much. Suck for Luck is not something you see out in Indianapolis or St. Louis because they have hope. Miami has nothing! Miami has no hope and no future without a FRANCHISE QB.

I feel no pity for Sparano or Ireland. They put themselves in this position with being so stupid as to believe in Henne and bring in Matt Moore as his only competition.

My only optimism is enjoying the rest of the NFL and watching good football and rooting for Miami to lose every game! Suck for Luck or Suck for Landry Jones is all the same for me, we need a franchise QB, period. Also fire that glorified position coach and pompous jerk Ireland.


Again with the 'Matt Moore led the Panthers down the path to the number one pick' stuff. Amazing!! Why don't you tell it like it really is? The guy started THREE games last year. The last two games they very easily could have win but the defence can't stop anyone. Did you forget thet Moore had this team up 15-0 with three minutes to go but again the defence didn't do their jobs? That's Matt Moore's fault, right? Listen, nobody is saying he's a world beater but ease up on the guy. And you can take a pop gun into a fight with a cruise missile....goes by the name of AJ Feely and his team kicked the a** off Brees and the Saints on the weekend. It won't be done every week but it can be done.

Mallet would have offered hope for the future at QB. No one thought he would start right away but to pass on Mallet for Thomas with DeMarco Murray also still on the board means the FO either dropped the ball or these other players didn't want to play here.

Mallet slipped out of the 1st and 2nd rounds so he would have been a bargain and would have provided the franchise with some needed hope and could have also provided a push for Henne.

I recall another M QB who slipped in a draft because of rumors. If this FO had known the history of the franchise they would have seen Mallet as a no brainer pick. instead we got a rag doll back field and a "suck for luck" campaign? please this FO is a laughing stock at this point... they could have brought in a QB with Pouncey to grow together... instead they chose this current path, and we can all see how that's playing out can't we?

Mark in Toronto,

You just said the smartest thing on this blog. Without a QB no other postion matters is right!

Jeff, excellent point on Moore...But having said that, we know he's NOT our QB of the future. We need to find out if Pat Devlin is worthy of keeping on the roster or start over from scratch...Same goes with Mitchell...I was going to include Marlon Moore on that list but now apparently he's on IR.

Don't tell some of these bloggers that Mallett was as talented as the other QB's & only slipped because of rumors. They will try to ridicule you as they tried to do to myself and others.

They refuse to accept the reality because they were too worried how Henne would handle another qb coming in. How we had other needs. Yadda yadda yadda. How does any team have a bigger need than at QB?

As a fan, knowing the importance of a QB, would you rather have a potential franchise Qb with enormous potential(1st round potential), who is plagued by the rumor mill or an upright runner with a history of fumble problems & major risk for persisntent injuries?

You're right Mando, at least with Mallett, we might not feel as hopeless.

Way to get the troops riled up and get some hits on your blog today, Armando. Bring up everyone's favourite target/saviour, Ryan Mallett. The truth of the matter is no one can answer the question, 'cause no one knows when he'll ever play. I can argue he'd have the same impact as Claussen, someone else can argue he'd have the same impact as Newton. It's a useless discussion because there's no way of knowing. Only way to answer it is to see the kid on the field. We'll have to wait until then.

I'm out boys....have fun!

Good...Don't let the door hit you on the way out..


I watched one of the Pats preseason games this season in which Mallet played extensively. Made the comment on the Herald article about that game that all dolphins fans who saw him play just saw the Pat's new franchise QB that will replace Brady when he is done playing. Miami once again missed out on getting the franchise QB they so desperately need because they have GM & HC who couldn't judge talent even if they had the instructions on how to do it. This is all thanks to the Bill "The Big Rotting Tuna" Parcells. He hired Ireland & Sparano, but could've cared less about rebuilding the Phins because he was getting his money no matter what & when the team was sold he quit.

Mallett is so immobile that he'd probably be on IR by now.

Phins72, I wouldn't say he's a franchise QB. We really don't know that until he actually plays menaingful games.

What I do know is, games would be more tolerable to watch if we had a "potential" franchise Qb in the game.

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