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What I'm thinking about the Dolphins coach search

Some thoughts on the Dolphins and their search for a coach:

1. They failed to land Jeff Fisher, the top candidate they wanted, and that is now two times that owner Stephen Ross identifies a coach he truly wants and fails to land him.

2. When I texted with a couple of Dolphins sources Friday afternoon after the Fisher news came out, their tone was of legitimate loss. There was a tone of disappointment, even anger in their words. Then I spoke with Ross and he stressed he's not disappointed. He spoke of finding a coach that 'hopefully will be in the hall of fame." So did the Dolphins pivot from their true feelings to spin mode? Of, course they did! They were disappointed, folks. No doubt about it. This failure to land Fisher is as much a loss as either game played again the Patriots during the season. It was a defeat.

3. Speaking of the message and the ability to communicate, I am seriously wondering the Dolphins' ability to do that even in the most intimate and what should be the most transparent venue -- within their walls, behind closed doors, during their sealed interviews. Ross told me in no uncertain terms that when Fisher came for his visit, he explained to the coach that Miami's philosophy is to have the head coach and the general manager work in a collaborative effort. Ross said the coach and GM must have a "partnership" and Fisher and he "had conversations that set forth the parameters of how the organization would be run and Jeff understood those and had no problem with it." But one very highly placed source close to Fisher called this morning and insists Fisher never agreed to anything like that, never indicated he was comfortable with that setup, and "the ultimate proof I'm telling the truth is [Fisher] will be the Rams coach and not the Dolphins."

So was Ross speaking a language Fisher didn't understand or vice versa? Did these folks spend hours together interviewing and when it was all done, they still didn't get what the other wanted or expected?

4. I think these next two paragraphs from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch speak poorly of the Dolphins:

"According to sources familiar with the negotiations, Fisher actually informed Rams owner Stan Kroenke sometime Thursday that he wanted to be the next head coach of the Rams.

"Because the contract hadn't been finalized, the Rams kept things quiet and even planned to continue their interview process. But Miami owner Stephen Ross kept pushing and pushing to land Fisher. Growing impatient, the Dolphins informed the Fisher camp they needed an answer Friday or they were going to move on in their search."

I cannot account for the paragraphs factually although the writer, Jim Thomas, is well-respected in journalism circles and has a reputation as a no-nonsense, solid reporter. So if true, I'm left shaking my head that the Dolphins would not be cool enough to play out the process. It seems dumb to pressure a candidate they're trying to land, and look nervous compared to the cool approach by the Rams. The Rams! The Dolphins made the Rams look laid-back, cool and under control! The Rams!

That doesn't speak well of the Miami approach, especially considering they could have continued on with their interviews with no problems anyway. Makes Miami look dumb.

5. Ross told me the process between Miami and Fisher was "sincere." He volunteered it. I'm glad he's comfortable. But I personally -- nothing to do with the Dolphins or what they're saying -- cannot get past the idea Fisher used Miami a bit. I have no proof of it. But it the possibility lingers for me. 

6. So what now? Ross told me interviews will continue but that coaches they are eyeing are in the playoffs today. Obviously, that includes coaches on the staffs of the 49ers, Packers, Saints, Giants, Patriots, Broncos, Ravens, and Texans. I would hope Denver offensive coordinator Mike McCoy, New Orleans defensive coordinator Gregg Williams, Baltimore defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano, Saints OL/running game coach Aaron Kromer, Green Bay assistant head coach Winston Moss, and Giants defensive coordintor Perry Fewell all deserve a look.

7. I understood that neither Todd Bowles nor Mike Nolan had much of a chance to be the Dolphins head coach while Jeff Fisher was out there. But he's not out there anymore. The Dolphins should re-think the idea of Bowles, who went 2-1 against three division foes at the end of the season. The Dolphins should consider interviewing Nolan, whose defense recovered from a terrible season-opener against New England to post decent numbers, for the head job. Nolan was head coach in San Francisco and it didn't work out. But to not even get an interview? Really?

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Silly for you to call Ross a liar. Miami should ban you from covering them.

Why not nolan, i like a coach who wants to wear a suit, it says something classy and respectful.

Ross is a pathetic, babbling, non-sensical idiot. If Ireland is his guy, then Ross needs to shut up, go away and let him run the team. He contradicts himself every other time he opens his mouth. If he believes there is really all this talent on the team and if he believes they're close, then stay the course with Bowles or Nolan. Tweak the staff accordingly and let the super, gifted genius Wyle E. Ireland get those remaining pieces to the puzzle.

A new coach means a new philosophy and that means starting all over again.

M. Nolan is responsible for the team thats playing today agianst the Saints, definitely not singletary. A. Smith just took too long to develop.

I'd like to see an offensive genius as the new HC. Keep Nolan to run the D, add RG3 and coach him up to his full potential.

The Fins will be great again....SOON!

I was 50/50 on Fisher anyway, so I'm not remotely disappointed. What disappoints me far more is just how inefficient, disorganized and dysfunctional this organization is showing itself to be.

It sure looks like they knew 12 months ago they wanted a new coach this year. Why weren't they more prepared? They had several months to come up with a serious list of candidates yet rolled the dice all on Fisher with no serious backup plan. The other interviews were seemingly just posturing, playing the game. How long are they willing to wait before making a hire? The longer it takes to get a new coach in place, the more you jeopardize the next season.

While other teams are making decisions, hiring coaches, the Dolphins seem to be dazed and confused and incapable of making any progress.

Anything ever positive Armando? Ever?
Its as if your angle is to write negatively about the team, ownership and front office until they stumble into the Superbowl, at which time you'll be forced to write a positive write-up while you search for a negative bone to stir up some negativity....

Hire Todd Bowles. Super Bowles baby!!

May be the "highly placed source close to Fisher" said that in order to mask the real reason to to come to Miami. For me is, because the competition with New England, Jets and Buffalo. In the NFC wast only the 49's at the moment.

the fins wont be great again under ross/ireland. great article mando! hold them accountable.

Well, I guess someone has to have the worst ownership in the league. Seems it is our turn.

It also seems likely Nolan is on his way to Atlanta.

I dont know much about Todd Bowles but he has been interviewing for HC jobs for different teams for the past 2 years...someone must see something in him and hopefully is not to comply with Rooney rule.


I would enjoy a nude interlude with you gentlemen, in an exotic locale such as Marrakesh or the Costa Brava.

We will smoke hashish and drop acid and explore each other's bodies

Pretty obvious Ross is in damage control mode now. Also appears they (Ross/Ireland) do not understand the basics of a job interview. You know, how the employer states how the organization is run and what they expect of (fill in job title).

What bumbling idiots!

THanks to the doosh Jeff Ireland the Patriots have Ryan Mallet and we are still looking.

I hear Bill Parcells is available these days.

I am not very sure that Mike Nolan would be interested at this time in a HC job,i think I believe I read that somewhere but who knows?

..You have to seriously question any credibility that Ross has at this point(as far an owner of a proffessional team) I'm not sure Ross is capable of making the right choice, or the ability to exercise the proper measures to get the"right guy"..

Ross may end up getting the right guy to turn the tides. IMO if he does. It will be a blessing from lady luck.

I've lost faith that our new power trio can identify and land the right candidate, and I don't need change for the sake of change.

Retain Bowles, keep the staff in tact, and get prepped for next year. Take advantage of the easier schedule next year by NOT rototilling the coaching staff and NOT installing new schemes.

Yes, I'm willing to believe we are more the 6-3 team that finished the season than the 0-7 team that started the season.

Yes, I'm willing to eat those words next season if they fail.

Ross should stick to his Mitt Romney fundraisers and sell to someone who has a clue how to run an effective professional sports organization.

The Dolphins got played.

Fisher knew from the very first visit that he wasn't going to be GM here.
He kept the door open;
to have leverage over the Rams
and as a fall-back option

Fisher didn't even inform Ross that he was going to the Rams just in case negotiations with the Rams broke down!

Worse of all, the narrative became "Dolphins even crappier organization than Rams" rather than "Fisher is one tricky slime bag".

We should have picked Mallet! I think that was a bad decision of Ireland. who knows how the kid would have turned out...

I would like to know Ross's thoughts on not interviewing Mike Nolan.

Something seems amiss there.

Repeating a thought from yesterday, this only puts more pressure on Ireland to have a good draft in 2012. Make that a great draft. Also the 2011 draft has to show serious improvement in their second season. That is only way Ross can justify his insistence on Ireland.



Ok, well first off, I don't believe the Phins pressured the "Friday or else..." claim. It was stated here, in Nashville where I am, that Fisher notified both franchises through the process that Friday would be the day. If you find my other post from yesterday, you'll see that, so that my friend is total BS.
Secondly, Fisher got on that helicopter knowing Ireland was going to be with the franchise, this wasn't some high school girl looking at the greaser thinking "He's a problem, but I'll make him change..." Fisher had seen that press conference where Ross made it clear Ireland was his guy.
There's two things here, one, how Fisher goes from 80/20 Miami as Schefter suggests, that being with Ireland still in place, to STL sounds to me like he played Miami against STL to get STL to surrender his front office requests...Don't you find it funny how the only time Fisher said anything (Fisher's camp as refer by Adam Schefter (ESPN) was when everyone started writing that Fisher was leveraging things in negotiations. Why would Fisher defend that he wasn't doing it? There was speculation about everything, why defend that? BECAUSE IT WAS TRUE AND MIGHT JEOPARDIZE HIS PLAN...
Secondly, I think Armando, as much as I like him, is a little miffed that he had absolutely NOTHING on the ongoing interview process. I don't think Armando has seen such a tight lipped process and having the story break on ESPN has Mando a little angry.


Aaaaaaaahhh the blogger negativity...how I hate it so. Moving on: the more I think about it, the more I am glad Fisher didn't sign. Owner is on the right track - find "a young Don Shula". That means you find a guy that is NOT a household name, has the key traits of a great HC but lacks HC experience, wants to be a HC badly, doesn't like moving every couple of years, and is HUNGARY to build & maintain a champion. The bad news is that's easier said then done. BUT, anyone with hiring experience CAN get this done. Gotta put in the due diligence.

**** MY DAILY RANT ****

ARMANDO SAYS 5b) > The Dolphins should re-think the idea of Bowles, who went 2-1 against three division foes at the end of the season.

Armando.. How long have you been around the game of NFL football? Now you are pumping up Bowles??? Nolan???

Desperation has been sinking into your mind as well as many, MANY of the posters since the end of the season.

The TEAM would have had the SAME results with or without Todd Bowles. With or without ANY of the sideline coaches, coordinators, special teams coaches, Quality control BS people and the owner.

The team does what it does. They execute plays. They have what's know as Team Captains. The Captains identify on "D" and call the coverage all day long just like audibles.

The QB knows ALL the plays and if he forgets, he looks at his wrist, of which he can make any call. The QB identifies the opposing teams "look" and can opt to change the play audible.

With ALL that.. Did Bowles make any difference? HELL NO.

These are millionaires and they know what needs to get done to make a play.

So please don't come here and make it seem that some Asst coach was the next Don Shula. Bowles is exactly what Soprano WAS and still IS. Same O and Same D and SAME Asst with a title of Interim HC.

Just like Jeff "THE SCOUT" who is occupying the GM's office. THE SCOUT Ireland is what he IS. NOT a GM,,NOT experienced enough to be a GM, Not smart enough to be a GM. He IS what he IS and Ross IS what he IS.

With THE SCOUT being allowed to remain, we ARE what we ARE and the Team SUCKS and will continue to SUCK.

Look to win 4 to 8 (if lucky) games next season and beyond.

Our only salvation is landing an experienced HC and firind Ireland. Keeping Ireland gets us Acorns and Value picks (in his words).

We cannot compete with a GM who has that mentality. He is a left over parcells PROJECT. Got that.. PROJECT which Parcells tried and failed.

Parcells left knowing that Parcells failed. He wasn't going to fire THE SCOUT or the Fist pumper as he couldn't be bothered as he left with suitcases full of Ross money.

I'm not sure who's worse, Ross as an owner, or Salguero as a writer.

..Costa Brava..Great place in the offseason. Great restaraunts...Ferrain Adria's El Bulli is an experience..It takes 2 months to get a Reservation, and they closed in the winter months(or used to be) Skip Costa brava in the summer unless you want to be surrounded by sunburned Brits wearing Liverpool kits who are pissed out of their minds...

Ross tried twice and failed both times - what was the common denomimator both times? (besides his low IQ?)...Ireland. It seems he is just not respected in football circles. At least he is not respected as much as Ross seems to respect him.

Funny... coach after coach spurns the Dolphins but arrogant naive Ross thinks, "It's not us, it's them." With such lack of maturity and understanding atop the organization, it is surely doomed.

Through this whole process, to my absolute surprise, this front office actually isn't as novice and unprofessional as some might think. These aren't dumb, clueless people with zero experience folks.
Ross and Peterson worked together in the 80's under the same in the USFL. Peterson also gave Ireland his first job in the NFL, as a scout...
So to think there's an issue with Peterson and Ireland is total garbage. And to think Ross is just running around clueless is actually not true at all...
Look, they haven't impressed yet, but I am starting to see that they like their direction, the Sparano thing was a mess, no question, but let's see what's learned in the front office.

Armando is still trying to bring his radio show ratings to 1.5%.

We say the foundation is good...+ Ireland
Matt Moore pickup...+ Ireland
Reggie Bush...+ Ireland
Defensive personnel...+ Ireland
trade for Marshall...+ Ireland
Odrick solid...+ Ireland
C Clay solid...+ Ireland
not trading for Orton...+ Ireland
wtf gives with the Ireland hatred? I think its making Dolphin fans look lame and uneducated to the rest of the NFL fans

Been a Dolphin fan since 1970. This was once a proud, highly respected team and organization. Now it's just embarrassing. I wish Ross would either sell the team or completely move behind the scenes. Don't care how good he is at business, he is a football fool and his ego won't let him see it. His football ineptness screams so loudly, that everyone but Ross see's it. HE is the problem in Miami. Til he goes, Miami will never return to team and organizational greatness.

Brian Billick > any 0-0 learning on the job assistant coach.


1- GATES ...........IRELAND
4-D.THOMAS....... IRELAND''''''''''''''''''''''''''


Who cares about Fisher...We ALWAYS go for the big names and fail. Get me Chip Kelly now!!

Armando, you seem to think you "know" everything that goes on behind closed doors. Your opinion is at best speculation, most often based on anonymous sources.

I know you are trying to provide information to us regarding the Dolphins,and I would like it to be credible rather than your personal opinion of the situation and the people involved

Aloco you need to ask joe that question.

Odrick played quite well in what was essentially his rookie year. Please take me out of your "we" equation.

Ross.....Still dosen't get it?....

Uly, I dont totally disagree, but...

The biggest thing I think needs to happen is killing the Dallas connection, that, if you look at it has been our downfall...

Ever since JJ came, we've dropped to the lowest of lows...

I don't want another waived Cowboy, another Cowboy coach, another Cowboy anything in this organization again.

Ireland is the last link to that, and I truly believe he has his last chance to prove himself. Sink or swim, he needs to be the last one...

Toilet Bowles? Really? That's the best you got Armando?

Toilet Bowles? Really? That's the best you got Armando?

Posted by: Eric | January 14, 2012 at 01:56 PM

Post of the day!

Cavemanna...It doesn't matter that Ireland has put some pieces together. The only thing that matters is winning. And our team didn't do this. I also disagree that those critical of Irlenad come across as lame, or uneducated.In fact..the fans have every right to be dissapointed in Ireland. It isn't okay to get worse. It is almost your responsibility as a fan to be vocal about your displeasure.

Was the product last year worthy of dodging critique? Also a team can have a gaggle of all pros.. We can have all the great players, or what some consider Ireland home runs..Until we win..Ireland has failed. It isn't good enough, and the excuses for him do not help anyone.

Ross did nothing wrong! Fisher was looking for work not the other way around! Should Ross/Ireland wait weeks for an answer? Fisher is the biggest name not the best name. Ross told him what he wanted out of him and Fisher played along. As a business owner, you lay out what you're looking for not what the employee is looking for! I guess it wasn't what Fisher wanted and good for him. Who cares?! The guy wasn't that successful anyway.

Repeating a thought from yesterday, this only puts more pressure on Ireland to have a good draft in 2012. Make that a great draft. Also the 2011 draft has to show serious improvement in their second season. That is only way Ross can justify his insistence on Ireland.

Posted by: DevilsAdvocate | January 14, 2012 at 01:38 PM

Hey DA,

I concur.. Unless he can land Luck, RG or Blackmon.. I think it's a bust.

My draft order would be:

Go all out for Luck. Hell, throw in the helicopter to sweeten the pot.

I would also if we cant get Luck make moves for Blackmon. Out of all the prospects this season outside of Luck, This kid Blackmon is as good as Luck as WR. He vertical jumps 11ft and Plaxico jumps less and Plex is 4" taller then Blackmon. The kid is unbelievable and i want him.

If we can walk away with Blackmon I would be a happy camper because As much as I want Luck, the chances aren't that good.

If it came to that, I'm also a partisan of keeping the HC and the Personnel man apart. For many reasons. That I remember only Lombardi and JJ accomplished anything with total power in their hands.

I wouldn't have a problem with Bowles, leave everything in place as it is, OC & DC doesn't change, Bowles comes in...
Keep him as interim, or sign him as a 1 year deal, based on merit...
And look for another candidate next season...
I would not "Settle" for a remaining coach, I would play it safe for now and make no major commitment to anyone.
If Bowles does well, then maybe you sign him a little longer...

I use Desert Essence Lime Nourishing Body Oil for my "personal massage" needs. It provides wonderful, frictionless lubrication and has a heavenly scent.

I have even used it when reading this blog and thinking about you masculine gentlemen who post here!

I am extremely happy that Fisher chose the RAMS...He's a pedestrian coach at best...Look at his overall record (a little over 500 percentage wise)...Zero Super Bowl Titles...Why does someone with those numbers warrant the kind of attention he has been getting?...Stop with the retread coaches!....Here's a thought...How about someone new & young...someone already in & familiar with your organization...How about Todd Bowles!!!!

Rams are looking for a GM, they should go find Randy Mueller.

I agree, Ireland isn't the problem. Fisher was slightly above average at best. I like our chances with picking up a young up and coming coordinator. Ross is learning, hasn't been an nfl owner that long. Be positive things will get better. Especially now that Tony S is with the Jets.

oscar canosa,

Your therapeutic services were in much need around here after the Fisher reports.

It's about the new HC and allowing the new HC to choose his GM.

When the Chef is going to prepare a meal he goes out and looks at the ingredients and chooses what he feels is the best quality and cooks it perfectly.

If we allow Jeff THE SCOUT Ireland to go out and pick the ingredients (draft players or FA) to HIS liking, then the Chef wont be happy as he is now stuck with whatever crap he purchased.

hence is why most HC want to be both GM and HC or at least choose the GM he wants.

Fisher never intended on coming here, and yes he used us. The only thing I would have done diferently as the Dolphin organization is not let it drag out. You know if you want to come or not, and he knew Ireland was already here. Money wasn't the issue so what else was the problem with Fisher? It was a ruse. It makes absolutely no sense for him to come all the way down here, when he has ties to the Rams, and no GM to worry about up there. And really, I'm glad. Fisher is good but not great. He manages teams. He provides stability. But we wouldn't go anywhere with him. If we're going to go topsy-turvy with our assistant coaches YET AGAIN, then it should be for someone who's worth it. Which means, a really great HC, or an up and coming OC.

And btw, if Nolan threatens to leave to become HC somewhere, I'd consider giving him the nod here in Miami first.

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