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Rizzi's case for special teams job

Like most assistant coaches on NFL staffs undergoing change, Dolphins special teams coach Darren Rizzi is trying to stay employed. Unlike many of his counterparts, he can present a solid, tangible case for keeping his job based on his unit's 2011 performance.

According to the annual study of the NFL's 32 special teams, done by Rick Gosselin of the Dallas Morning News, the Dolphins staged the biggest one-season improvement on special teams from 2010 to 2011, vaulting from 24 a year ago all the way to second under Rizzi.

The Dolphins finished just behind the San Francisco 49'ers in the study that judges 22 elements of the kicking game -- with each element receiving votes from 1 to 32, with the lowest scoring unit accounting for the best score.

The Dolphins finished in the Top 10 in 14 categories and, like the 49ers, their kickers were a strength. Dan Carpenter was 13-of-16 in field goals from 40 yards and beyond and punter Brandon Fields had a net punting average of 41.1 yards.

Four division champions finished in the top 10 in special teams and one of them is headed for the Super Bowl. The AFC champion New England Patriots finished fifth this season in special teams, the New Orleans Saints eighth and the Denver Broncos 10. The NFC champion New York Giants finished 22nd in the kicking game.

Congratulations to Rizzi, Carpenter, Fields and the rest of the Miami special teams unit.

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Ginn paid like a top 10 pick under the old CBA....very important detail.

wolfman, I uderstand your logic but with that extra cap space the Dolphins didnt do anythng with it. he would of came off the book this year. If he leaves oh well.

Andy, great stuff...This "good friend of yours", you think he can get me a job like his?? LOL!!

Does anyone else here think they are going to 4-3 to save money?

I mean going to a 4-3 will alow Miami to let Langford and Solaia walk because the price tag is too high. Then they can move to 4-3 and pick up a cheaper pass rush DE in the draft.

I am unsure they let Langford walk but I just get the feeling they are doing that.

And don't get me wrong, I like the 4-3 I just get the feeling it is for other reasons than it is the D of choice by the coaches.

Montreal,

He doesn't make a ton of money but he has one hell of a gig thats for sure with a lot of perks. I'm not an Eagles fan but he is so I could only imagine bro. He is "living the dream"/

Texas, Langford's demands (from what I read anyway) are a bit unrealistic. His price tag would have to go down quite a bit to stay in Miami. I'm like you, I have a feeling he's done.

Texas,

If they switch is a 4-3 then I don't see any way which they bring back Langford. He is a pro typical 3-4 DE. He is about 6'6 295. I guess he could play DT in a 4-3 but he has never done that so it probably isn't worth the risk.

Soliai on the other hand can play in 4-3 or 3-4 however would probably get paid a lot more in a 3-4 so he is more then likely out too unless Miami see's the value in him stuffing the run and taking on blockers to allow Dansby to fill the way Zach used too.

wolfman, I uderstand your logic but with that extra cap space the Dolphins didnt do anythng with it. he would of came off the book this year. If he leaves oh well.
Posted by: Spiderman | January 27, 2012 at 01:27 PM

______________________________________________

Often it's principle....and strictly business. Many times we forget that football is really all about business. There's so much more that goes on than just football.

Just like these "Irsay is a dick" comments....maybe yes, maybe no....but really, it just boils down to business.

Possible Franchise QB Scenario for Dolphins.

Colts draft Andrew Luck

Peyton Manning FA signs with Ravens

Ravens trade Joe Flacco to Dolphins


In this case the Colts draft Luck and Luck becomes the Colts Franchise QB and don't have to pay Manning the 28 million.

Peyton Manning becomes a free agent and signs with the Ravens who now have the piece missing to reach a Super Bowl. Manning gets to avenge the Colts staying in the AFC and gets to play against the Rival Patriots again.

Ravens get a first and second round pick for Joe Flacco to add weapons for Manning.

Dolphins get a proven Franchise QB that will turn the team around.

Andy, doesn't matter. My wife is the one that makes good $$$. Where do I sign? LOL! Who cares if it's Philadelphia, NY, LA, Miami...My wife is a psychologist, they're in high demand regardless where you are...LOL!!!

For me it is hard to get into the Manning talks because no one really knows what his status is. I am not sure Peyton even knows what his own status is.

Texas_Dolfan | January 27, 2012 at 12:57 PM

Manning was ready to practice in December but was told NOT TO!

wolfman, I understand what you're saying about the business side of football...But Irsay didn't have to talk like that about Peyton...Wasn't necessary imo...

AndyNJ,

I hear you on the Manning risk factor but in all honesty to me Flynn is fools gold (AJ Feeley)!

Wolfman, I dint blame ginn or the team for what happened. The fans did the most damage. The contract like you say could've been fixed.

Omar, stop smoking that Jamaican stuff brotha! LOL!!!

Langford and Soliai are probably done and both would be vastly overpaid in a 4-3. Langford would be no more than Larry Chester and Soliai Sam Adams or tony siragusa.

Montreal,

It's not horrible money but not great either lol. He worked his way up from un-paid intern to paid intern and then was let go for a cheaper paid intern was then asked to come back and "help out" on home games only (un-paid) then was hired full time. He worked for them in that capacity for like 5 years and just this season after the lockout ended was asked to be full time hire. He ate a lot of sht but he didn't care cause he was a die hard and lived at home with his mama, no kids lol. Now he gets to see every football stadium in the league. BTW he said Detroits is probably the nicest stadium but Chicago had the best football feel.

Guys the problem with the impending 4/3 switch isn't so much our down linemen outside of Solia but our OLB's we don't have them for the scheme and in all honesty I wonder if Wake isn't on the trade block on draft day.

I picture most of you guys as being obese slobs.

GET OFF YOUR BUTTS, CUT THE DAMN UMBILICAL CORD TO YOUR COMPUTERS, AND GET SOME FREAKIJNG FRESH AIR AND EXERCISE YOU DECAYING FREAKS!

I wouldn't give the top two picks for Flacco. His pass offenses have never been better than average.

wolfman, I understand what you're saying about the business side of football...But Irsay didn't have to talk like that about Peyton...Wasn't necessary imo...
Posted by: #1 Dolphin Fan in Montreal | January 27, 2012 at 01:41 PM

_____________________________________________

I have a sinking feeling that this is going to get a little nasty. Probably not to the level things got to with Favre/Packers....but I think it could become a somewhat ugly "divorce"

Let Soliai and Langford walk and sign Mario Williams...We already have Starks, Odrick, McDaniel and Wake (he becomes a DL in a 4-3)...Imagine Wake and Williams at DE and Starks and Odrick at DT...Awesome!

Omar Kelly,

Did you turn on your Sun Sentinel Mob?? Anyway I LOVE the outside the box thinking but don't believe the Ravens will make that move, they have a Q.B. that would be in the S.B. if Lee Evans had secured the ball. In Manning they would be back to square one in 2 to 3 seasons and I don't think Ozzie Newsome makes that move.

i dont understand letting nolan walk and hiring a dbacks coach from cinncy. a big step back. cinncy secondary was bad.

Posted by: greg z. | January 27, 2012 at 01:16 PM

New HC's bring in their own staff. That is standard procedure. They let Nolan walk early as a courtesy, to let him lock something up, because the chances of the next HC keeping him were slim to none.

What are consider most popular emblem of NFL in the population of America? I have see many that are from cats and also unnecessary to say the dolphin of Miami. I am in Republica Dominicana.

Thank you, Juan Davila

o.k., we got our coordinators. now fire ireland and sell the team!

Nolan wanted out, anyway. He and Mike Smith are close friends going back many, many years.

wolfman, agreed...The reason I called Irsay a dikk is because you should NEVER disrespect a guy who gave you a SB title...I mean yeah, he did pay Peyton a lot of $$ to rehab, but how much $$$ has Peyton put in his pockets over the years? Quite a lot. I understand the business side of it but Irsay should not disrespect Peyton. When you think the Indianapolis Colts, you think Peyton Manning. That deserves respect imo...And all the charity work Peyton has done over the years...Manning is not only a franchise QB, he's also a class act...If by some miracle his neck would heel, I'd take him in Miami in a heartbeat...

fin4life,

I disagree but I respect your opinion. It's one thing to have a few nice outtings and have mixed results like AJ Feeley but Flynn has looked great in 2 starts 9 TDs to just 2 ints and 67.9% completion rate (other 3 career ints were in mop up duty). He knows the system and he has been building on momentum from his first start vs Pats a year ago. He was great in the preseason (granted only preseason) but then came out and threw up a ridiculous game. The numbers are impressive but that wasn't what impressed me I watched the game like 5 times on NFL rewind and the way he hit guys in stride was why he was able to throw for so many yards. The guys caught the ball and was able to keep going. The ironic thing was his longest pass the 80 yard screen to Grant was actually his worse pass of the day, Grant had to stop and come back to catch it.

Montreal, I agree with you. In a 4-3, we have more than enough linemen without those two. Sucks to let young useful players go for nothing but the money is better used elsewhere.

We prefer the Truth.

Toronto,

Letting Soliai go is tough because he has value as a run stuffer and is a big reason why Miami's run was good the past 2 seasons. Langford was good against the run as well but is useless from what I see in a 4-3. He isn't a good pass rusher and the way to experiment is not to sign a guy to a long term deal and see what he has. It's better go through the draft or even sign a guy who knows how to play in 4-3.

I don't know how much money is freed if they don't resign Soliai but there are cheaper 4-3 DT alternatives that are effective at stopping the run, Broderick Bunkley and Shaun Rogers are possibilities to be had at a much cheaper price.

Uh....guys,

We were in the 4-3 defense every single passing down in 2011 and we sucked against the pass.

Obviously we need a dynamic pass rusher and dynamic qb. We're not going to be able to make a "BIG SPLASH" at both qb(Flynn) and pass rusher(Mario Williams) in free agency. I dont see the salary cap allowing it.

Remember, we would still have to sign our #8-9 1st rd pick too. So, if Flynn's signed look for no other huge fa splash. Best thing to do then would be to draft Quinton Coples(Pass rush).

If it comes down to keeping Soliai or Langford, it's a no-brainer to choose Soliai. Soliai's in Hawaii right now.

Langford whose average at best, has shown little evidence he'll ever be in Hawaii unless its his post-career destination as a "pine-apple picker".

Keep Soliai, let Langford walk. You just dont let pro bowlers walk, especially when thier just entering the "prime" of thier career.

Quote from Philbin in the Miami herald.

"New coach Joe Philbin said Friday the team will “absolutely” make significant use of the no-huddle offense, will exploit matchup advantages and will use multiple formations to keep defenses guessing.

“We want to create mismatches… with our formations, our motion, our shifting,” he said. “We may line up with no backs in the backfield.

Next play, we may have two tight ends and two backs. We want to play fast, make the defense adjust. If they can’t adjust and if they can’t handle our empty backfield and if we’re completing passes left and right, we’re going to stay with it and make them stop it.

“I’m not saying we’re going to be no-huddle every play. [But] if you want to be an up-tempo team, you want to have as many at-bats as possible.”

Philbin said the Dolphins will practice the no-huddle a good bit when the offseason practices begin in May: “Let’s be proactive with it. We want to get our players used to playing fast and decisive.”

Well crap, I am starting to get hopeful about the Dolphins next year. They better get the right QB.

YG,

There would still be alternatives to get pass rush help. It is ideal to have 2 dynamic pass rushers but not everthing can be fixed in 1 offseason QB, WR, TE, OT, DE, FS etc.

Some other 4-3 free agent DE's who can help out as pass rushers:

Jeremy Mincey (Jacksonville) 8 sacks this past year.

Andre Carter (Patriots) 10 sacks

Robert Mathis (Colts) could be a cheap vet to use on pass downs and move Odrick inside

Israel Idonije (Bears) good against the run and solid pass rusher can play inside or outside on pass downs.

Again none are Mario caliber but not many are.

Soliai was a DT in college that had to learn to become a NT in the nfl. Prior to what some of you here may think. Soliai can play 5-technique, he did it in college.

Becoming a "pro bowl" NT only helps in his overall experience playing the "interior" of the defensive line. Please keep Soliai.

Andy,

In the 03 Season Feeley put up ridiculous numbers Vs. the very game Manning lead Colts in a game were they were given ZERO chance and won I believe 21-0. It's the reason everybody wanted him in 04 and we under Rick Speilmen made a trade I think Andy Reid still laughs about in family gatherings. I can see it while I type.

Family: Andy tell us again how you took the Dolphins.

A.Reid: Well they called about a chyt bag 3rd stringer who couldn't beat out Koy Detmer and I said a 1st rounder and the IDIOT on the other line said Rd.2 and I said deal done!!

BWAAAAAAAAHHH!!!

YG,

I agree I would rather go veteran FA DE and resign Soliai then let Soliai walk and get into some high priced bidding war for Mario Williams and end up striking out

Fin4life,

Well we got the last laugh on the Eagles. We traded Feeley to SD for like a 6th round pick or something. They released him and Philly resigned him for nothing.

That will teach them to trade with us! ;)

AndyNJ,

I dont think cap dollars allows us to sign both Flynn and Mario Williams anyway. It may require gutting the team intensively to do it.

Plus after the 2013 season we're looking at resigning Jake Long. Long becomes a fa after 2013, its going to take a U.S. mint to resign him, and we cant be carrying an excess of absorbent contracts on the books then.

So it's Flynn or Mario Williams. Our "short term future"suggest we can only sign one of them. Im betting it's Flynn, then draft Coples.

We need to keep that fat lard Solai ccause he make pay time to time

YG, problem is we need to improve our pass rush and Soliai doesn't help us there...And he's looking for big $$$...

YG or any one else, what is our cap situation? I thought I read that we're 10 mil under the cap?

If we go 4-3 defense, we can seek trade value for our abundance of 3-4 defensive linemen. I dont see us getting great value, but with extra 5th-6th rd picks for them. Ireland can use those picks to "ACORN HUNT". LOL

After thought on my 2:34 post.

A.Reid: Then the Dolphins guy calls the Rams and inquires about a stinker like Lamar Gordon and the Rams got a 3rd rounder out of that, BWAAAAAAAHH!! To bad I couldn't send them our 4th string S.T. Running Back for that #3!

Plus after the 2013 season we're looking at resigning Jake Long. Long becomes a fa after 2013, its going to take a U.S. mint to resign him, and we cant be carrying an excess of absorbent contracts on the books then.


Yesterday's Gone | January 27, 2012 at 02:40 PM


J.Long is going the way of Tony Boselli with all the injuries, his stock is falling!!

Jake Long is a Pro Bowler who still is better hurt then 95% of other players healthy. Long will be going nowhere anytime soon.

#1,

Even in a 4-3 defense, there are only a rarest very few DT's that can "CONSISTENLY" pressure the passer anyway. There may be only two max DT's in the "entire league" that can do this.

What's great about Soliai is you know that he'll command a doubleteam. He's too much of a load to consistently handle one on one, no matter its a 3-4 or 4-3 defense.

As I already posted, for pass rush pressure, after signing Flynn it more than makes sense to draft Coples. Coples and Wake as the DE's could be awesome.

Great article about Philbin and what he plans to do with our offense...I'm quickly becoming a fan of Joe Philbin. Everything he says makes a lot of sense. No BS. If, and that's a big if, Ireland can have a solid draft and sign some key players, Philbin might be able to turn this thing around much quicker than people expect...

J.Long is going the way of Tony Boselli with all the injuries, his stock is falling!!

Posted by: fin4life | January 27, 2012 at 02:47 PM

Well, if this becomes the thinking around Miami, you can just add LT to our primary needs right now. I presently dont see it.

Yesterday, I understand what you're saying. I'm still NOT convinced we should re-sign Soliai. Time will tell I guess. The biggest problem I have with re-signing Soliai is we already have Odrick, Starks and McDaniel who can play DT.

#1,

Im still in "expect nothing and hope for the best" mode. Every new regime comes in whispering "sweet nothings" in our ear.

Im quickly learning the nfl's a "show me" not "tell me" league. How many "baby daddies" have we had since Shula? LOL

STOP THE NONSENSE, with the rookie QB that may be a bust!!! Get Flynn here keep Moore & Henne for back ups & ALL WILL BE JUST FINE!!!

Montreal -- I agree about Philbin, the more I read the more optimistic I get about next season.

He also seems to be more open with the media. He speaks in complete understandable sentences.

I also like the coaches he's hiring. He seems to be going after very knowledgeable coaches that are good teachers of the game. Coaches he's familiar with so there will be a lot of continuity.

Still Waiting for Odin to explaine how he knows how they house the Pervs??

Posted by: Coalition to Ban Ireland. | January 27, 2012 at 02:55 AM

It's called "LOCK UP". It airs on MSNBC and the National Geographic Channel.

Of course to know this you would have to have a TV, a Cable provider, a JOB to pay the bill, etc, etc..........

Quit spending it up on the Yayo and learn a thing or two. A mind is a terribke thing to waste-LOL ;)

Make no mistake about it, these guys are now into winning Games and makin $ that way and (do) wipe their as- with most Fans opinions. And well they should, they know more Football than (most) of Us.

Still Waiting for Odin to explaine how he knows how they house the Pervs??

Posted by: Coalition to Ban Ireland. | January 27, 2012 at 02:55 AM

It's called "LOCK UP". It airs on MSNBC and the National Geographic Channel.

Of course to know this you would have to have a TV, a Cable provider, a JOB to pay the bill, etc, etc..........

Quit spending it up on the Yayo and learn a thing or two. A mind is a terribke thing to waste-LOL ;)

Well, if this becomes the thinking around Miami, you can just add LT to our primary needs right now. I presently dont see it.

Yesterday's Gone | January 27, 2012 at 02:54 PM

I haven't said it's the thinking but you really would have to be blind not to see the parallels. Also I will go right out and say it after our 1st game in 09 were John Abraham put Long on his back at will, I started to watch his game Vs. speed rush and it's weak!!!!

#1,

Yes we have the dlinemen you mentioned. But in the nfl you still that very good huge bodied guy in short and goaline run situations.

Guys like Odrick, Starks, McDaniels may get pushed around a little in very short run situations. I believe that's when you will begin to see where we miss Soliai if he walks.

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