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The fallout from the Ireland staying, Sparano going column

So what is the fallout?

That's what the Dolphins are worried about today. Actually, that's what the Dolphins worry about a lot: The Fallout.

Today, the fallout comes in various forms but to discuss that, first we must establish the explosions that happened to create fallout. Sunday's explosions came first in the form of a 26-10 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles.

That game sealed Tony Sparano's fate as head coach. The Dolphins vehemently deny any decision on the coach's future has been made. But it is done. The coach will not return for the 2012 season, as I wrote Sunday evening.

I also wrote Sunday evening that general manager Jeff Ireland would be retained for the 2012 season. My column on both topics appears in today's Miami Herald. (Kindly check out the column and my take on the coach and GM.)

So why do I reference the fallout? Well, because Sparano has been concerned whether or not his players will be affected by the news and or speculation that he will go. I predict this news and or speculation will have zero effect on the Dolphins.

Proof?

When asked about the topic Sunday afternoon, Jason Taylor answered with a question of his own. He was asked about Sparano's departure being on everyone's lips and he answered, "How's that any different than September?"

Um, well, it is no different. The Dolphins continued to play hard for Sparano when it was clear their season was over by the time September passed from the calendar's pages. They continued to play hard for themselves, for pride, for the sake of enjoying whatever wins they could muster and, yes, for their coach.

It will be no different now these final three games.

"We play to win games," linebacker Karlos Dansby said. "We got pride, man. Like that dude said on ESPN, we play to win games."

So that fallout will be minimal and manageable.

Then there is fallout from my report about the club's decision to retain general manager Jeff Ireland as general manager.

Fans have mixed reactions. That is part of the fallout. Some media is scrambling to confirm my report. So that's part of the fallout the club is handling. And then there's the truly important stuff:

Forget whether you agree with this or not, the decision is made. Ireland stays for 2012.

The questions are, what this means to the looming coach search. Can the Dolphins still hope to lure a "star" coach while having to hitch him to a present personnel man? Can the Dolphins truly become a championship caliber team with Ireland at the helm of the personnel department, a pertinent question considering they haven't done so in his tenure.

Will Ireland's return be part of a makeover in personnel, one that also includes the additional hire of a football operations czar akin to what Bill Parcells was? Carl Peterson, anyone?

More fallout?

Does retaining Ireland give he Dolphins an advantage in knowing, scouting, acquiring information on Robert Griffin III, the Heisman Trophy winning QB from Baylor? Ireland, it should be noted, graduated from Baylor and has obvious ties to the school.

[RADIO NOTE: I know this is controversial stuff among fans in that you have opinions on the subjects. discussed. You may voice that opinion on my radio show, Armando and the Amigo, as you watch the show stream live here at the Miami Herald. You may call into the show, toll-free from anywhere in the United States. The number is 1-888-640-9385.

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