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My take on Ross, Wallace, Jennings, Bowe

As you know, Stephen Ross spoke on the state of the team Monday. And I came away from the talk absolutely certain that the Dolphins have some sort of plan for 2013 -- because the owner mentioned this plan half-a-dozen times.

But when I asked him what that plan is, I was disappointed to hear the answer Ross gave. 

No, as I write in my column in The Miami Herald today, I didn't intend to hear a blow-by-blow of what the Fins are about to do. I was, however, hoping for something beyond, "Win."

Frankly, I left Monday's talk not knowing if the Dolphins -- a team with approximately $46.8 million in salary cap space this offseason -- are expecting to be a big player in free agency or not.

In one breath, Ross said he'll pay whatever it takes to get a player. In the next breath he said free agency is not the answer. Sooo, the message was a little garbled.

I guess I'm just a poor immigrant that no understandy Inglich goot.

After writing my column Monday evening, I heard from a Dolphins employe in the know who told me the Dolphins will absolutely dive into free agency and happily pay top dollar for top-tier talent in free agency. He told me that is what Ross meant to say.

I hope that is true.

We'll see.

I hope the Dolphins pick the best deep-threat receiver in free agency and sign him. Yes, that to me would be Mike Wallace. (And yes, he drops some). But I like the idea of Miami not needing 14-play drives every time on offense to score touchdowns. This team needs a 50-, 60- and 75-yard bomb over the top of the defense every once in a while.

Explosive plays on offense make me write happy.

Most great teams have them.

The Dolphins have very few.

Mando unhappy with few.

Anyway, I suppose a guy like Greg Jennings is also a possibility, but while fans have a growing fascination with him, I'm not quite sure he's the deep threat Miami needs. Don't get me wrong, he's very good. If Miami cannot land Wallace, he's he next best answer.

If Miami lands Wallace and Jennings ... awesome.

But he would not be my priority. He'd be No. 2. He's older than Wallace by three years. He's going to be 30 next season. He's been injured. He's declined his last two years. And he'll be very expensive. So I see some red flags.

Yes, Wallace has some flags, too. But they blur to me as he's running a 4.3 past defenders. To me, he needs to be the UFA priority once free agency opens, assuming he's on the market.

Many of you also like Dwayne Bowe. Pass.

He's not a deep threat. He's also older than Wallace. He kind of reminds me of Brandon Marshall. And that didn't get the Dolphins in the playoffs.

Comments

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Orlando,

Further to my last point, it's why the really good teams.....the teams that are in the playoffs every year, draft linemen early. Packers, Pats, Steelers, Niners all have first and second round players on their OL. How come they don't go 'playmakers every year' high? Aren't we told this is a 'passing league' only? It's a DUMB argument.....

dusty,

I think Ireland should have traded up to get the TE Allen that ended up in Indy. Where did he go? Second round? Third round? I really like this kid and I think he has a chance to be a better TE than the Stanford kid they took as well. Once again, Ireland's reluctance to acquire that pass-catching TE has been one of his achilles since he's been here.

Craig M | January 08, 2013 at 11:23 PM

Watching Allen play really hurts when looking at our T.E. selection. Like everybody I thought it would be College BFF Fleener lighting it up with Luck but it's been Dwayne Allen whose really caught attention. They grabbed him RD-3 and he jumped out at every Miami fan after we played the Colts still remember him on a pivotal 3rd and long were he catches the ball and barrels down on Sean Smith who completely whiffs on the tackle wanting no part of him. After in everyone of those Indy comebacks CBS kept giving you the last few minutes of there he was making a play in the pass game and even worse is his ability to block.

The scouts like Jarvis Jones in the 3/4 because of his prototypical size at 6'3"/240 but he posted a high 4.5/40 with a low 4.6 suggesting he can play in a 4/3 as well. IMO a football player with edge speed who can cover. His size being tailored for this or that is a matter of opinion. Back in the day LT played at the same size posting a freakishly fast 4.45/40 not saying he's LT just saying he can play in either D at that speed and saw him in Georgia running with RB's in fast SEC.

not really a passing league but a franchise qb league.

dusty,

gb's OL is only horrible because it's been decimated by injuries. Amazing they've gone this far with the line they have. It's a tribute to Rodgers and the coaching staff. I think they have a chance against SF this weekend.

Packers and Steelers are in the playoffs every year. People want to say it's because of their OL but if their QB had no time to throw they'd never be able to do what they do. This point can't be argued.

Craig M | January 08, 2013 at 11:34 PM

I get the point of your post but common Pitt.? Big Ben has been running for his life for yrs. now with Starks on his blindside and feel the Packers will look to finally call B.Baluga what he is and that's a BUST that hasn't gotten Rodgers killed by pure luck up until now.

i like sea vs denver for super bowl

fin4life,

I REALLY like Jones. I think he's going to be a very good player in this league and he's most likely the best player in the draft IMO.

Orlando,

I really like Warmack too. I'm not big guard on taking guards high by this guy may be a top 5 talent in this draft. Mark said today he sees that guy as being a potential Hall of Famer one day and guys laughed at him but I really think this kid has a chance to be special. I guess some guys just don't see the imprtance of good guard play. They have a 'just stuck anyone in there' type of philosophy. Whatever.....

fin4life,

Baluga's been hurt a lot. He's a good player when healthy.

Steelers have had problems with their line but they've tried to fix that with the drafting of Pouncey and Decastro. Both these were hurt for a bit this year too. Good football players. You're right, they still need help at the tackle positions but I believe they'll address that this year.

One other team that may have interest in Warmack is Buffalo. If he's still there at 8 I wouldn't be the least bit surprised if they drafted this kid. He INSTANTLY makes your line better. Look for some big runs next year from Spiller opened up by this kid.

jones very injury prone, always beat up

I have no idea which players will be good or bad. I have no clue which player would actually be the best selection for the Dolphins. I don't know if Jeff Ireland's draft will be good, bad, or mediocre. I'm not sure which FA's would perform best as Dolphins.

But there is one thing I'm sure of...

dusty,

gb's OL is only horrible because it's been decimated by injuries. Amazing they've gone this far with the line they have. It's a tribute to Rodgers and the coaching staff. I think they have a chance against SF this weekend.

Craig M | January 08, 2013 at 11:44 PM

If the PACKERS pull this one out it will be due to Rodgers. Bulaga is a bust and was replaced by another scrub at LT some guy called Newhouse. Jeff Saturday retired himself to the sideline although this Evan Diertich-Smith appears a find. They have drafted well in the past yrs outside the OL.

Amazing that Jeff Saturday made the Pro Bowl this year. Talk about a name recognition contest. His own team didn't even think him good enough to start any more.

Not sure how many game Bulaga played this year but pretty sure he's been on IR for a while.

Craig M,

Every single game I've watched since Bulaga was drafted he's been blown up by speed rushers remember his rookie Yr. with Wake having a career day against him and this Yr. in Seattle he nearly got his QB hurt. They are going with Newhouse this weekend or is it injury as you say I'm not sure about this one but I do know my eyes tell me Bulaga is NFL DOODOO!

Amazing that Jeff Saturday made the Pro Bowl this year. Talk about a name recognition contest. His own team didn't even think him good enough to start any more.

Not sure how many game Bulaga played this year but pretty sure he's been on IR for a while.

Craig M | January 09, 2013 at 12:01 AM

I NEVER pay any attention to the Pro Bowl anymore pure popularity deal amongst players real B.S.! I believe the more athletic Pouncey plays in Miami but the one in Pitt. given the history at the pos. on that team and fanfare coming into the NFL is now the consensus pick same with Long since 2010.

I want a pass rusher too as a priority but would understand if Ireland went all in on Warmack. You have to pick impact players not reach for need. Taking a WR with the first pick will be a big mistake as you can take the same type player later in the second or 3rd round.

Craig totally agree that a CB is not going to get in Brady's face. Pass rushers are the ones that can stop a top passing attack. That has been the Giants' formula the past couple of years; Great QB play and a tremendous pass rush.

fin4life,

Yeah we don't quite see eye to eye on Bulaga. Not saying he's top 5 in the league but I think he's better than you're giving credit for. Maybe you just saw him have some bad games. Cam Wake makes a lot of guys look bad and that Seattle pass rush has been awesome at times this year.

He made the all rookie team in 2010 and he's only 23 years old. I'm not ready to give up on this guy yet.

Agreed about Warmack making sense in Buffalo and good night my friend!

I am checking out also. Good night.

Cheers fin4life.....

Orlando,

We see it the same way. Warmack's not my first choice by any means but he's going to be one heck of a player. No question we need playmakers but some of that can be achieved via free agency. Mark's right. As this line stands right now, minus Long, it's not a great OL. Jerry's average at best and Incognito's not great and getting a bit older. Warmack instantly makes this line better. A lot fans will hate this pick but it's not about appeasing the fans, it's about making the team better.

Again, not saying this is my preferred way to go....but boy would this kid help the line immensely. It might even allow the team to move Jerry to the tackle position which he's played well before.

He made the all rookie team in 2010 and he's only 23 years old. I'm not ready to give up on this guy yet.

Craig M | January 09, 2013 at 12:07 AM

Maybe your right but seen him outclassed often early in career and maybe better suited at one of the Guard spots. Heck, some feel Jake Long the 2nd coming and I've been worried to death seeing steady decline for 2 yrs now.

Orlando D,

The Giants have been masking weak play at CB through the rush and when those guys took sometime off due to fatigue or whatever Corey Webster and Co. really got exposed, you knew it was bad when they tried A.Rolle at CB some, I know he played there at the U but was served better at Safety in the NFL.

fin4life,

You may be right, Bulaga may be better suited to play guard, where he played in College.

I'm switching off for the night too fellas....'night.

you have a lot more picks than usual in the draft we need a top reciever out of the free agency because you wont have to wait for him to fit in the nfl for 2-3 years, spend your draft picks wisely by taking a stud D/E from oregon or from lsu we need to post more points on offense, spend the money on free agency for a reciever offensive lineman you can get late in draft your star lineman become pros in later rounds. reason reggie didnt run good because all defenses were playing up to stop the run because we had no stud reciever we dont need to worry about getting to the super bowl we need to worry about knocking off new england we need a 2 tight end set thats whats killing teams today is tight ends.

Bulaga is the cavier of potential draft picks.

All this draftnik talk is nonsense.

Ireland is guaranteed to eff up the draft & FA no matter how many picks or $$$ he has.


Count on Jeffy's gross incompetence, and prepare to follow your pet pick as he prospers elsewhere.

Forget CB, forget OL, forget DE. Our first pick in the Draft will be an explosive Playmaker to complement T-hill. Ross wants it that way. I want it that way. Everybody wants it that way.

Be smart,draft Warmack in the first round,then cb ,wr

We CREATED the Thunderbird. You know NOTHING. Be calm.

And WE created Richard's Wild Irish Rose, so stay Frosty!

It might not be Wild Irish Rose but most of the Time I'm frosty.

You state Bowe reminds you of Brandon Marshall...really the guy who caught a ton in Chicago....wow I marvel on your naive statements....

Yeah Armando can you imagine....Tannehill to Marshall, oh that would have been terrible, NOT......you and Jeff Ireland are obviously cut from the same cloth of Legends in your own minds that have no clue of what it takes to build a team...

Is there anyone in this Blog that posts with his real name besides me and Craig Miller?

Tannehill is more valuable to us than Marshall was. No sense having the latter one blabbering all over the ears of the first one.

Part of me wants to suck for Jadaveon Clowney.
2-12 should get 'er done.
Otherwise, beat the Jets and play the Patsies like MEN (like we did the first time at home) and 8-8 with 2013's schedule would be a nice step.
Of course, part of that step must be a nice big step for Tannehill.

Whoops, meant 2-14...it's late.

Is there anyone in this Blog that posts with his real name besides me and Craig Miller?

Posted by: oscar canosa | January 09, 2013 at 01:18 AM

------------------------------------------

Yes.

Dolphins will draft O lineman with 1st pick and still not the playoffs.

Why Hartline cant adjust to deep ball? Why does his head turn like a windmill when ball in the air? How many TDs cellar WRs drop against the Pats? Weeden. Not better than Tanny. Why WRs cant block for Reggie? Especially Bess and Hartline? Why is Cobbs from GB better than Dolphins entire receiving core. Why Sherman calls boring plays. Why is corner from Bama better than Sean Smith? Why no pass rush on Brady?

Why Jcb can't write English?

Tanny better be practicing long balls, starting right now. For the hundredth time. It don't matter who you get running routes, if the pass isn't dropped in there, forget it.
Tannehill was missing his long balls. But Moore hit them in the only game he played this year. I'm not a Tanny basher, I hope he doesn't become another Henne, but he better put in alot of work this off season on the long balls.

Questions abound about the 2013 priorities of the franchise. Everyone is familiar with HC Joe Philbin's feelings about building the team through the draft and so when asked at a routine media event about FA, Philbin had this to say: "I'm not opposed to improving the football team in any way shape or form, by any method we can, whether that's a trade; whether that's free agency; draft obviously -I'm not opposed to any of that." So far, so good.

Several days later, owner Steven Ross had this to say: "As the coach stated, you want to build through the draft. You certainly want to see what's out there in free agency and you want to get the right player that will fit in the locker room and will bring the right kind of ingredients and is still hungry and isn't signing for the big contract. Free agency certainly isn't the answer." Hmmm... This certainly seems to put a damper on things.

Let's see... it sounds like Brandon Marshall won't be invited back anytime soon; like Jeff Ireland won't be writing any more record-breaking salary deals; and like FAs will be scrutinized as much as rookies for their character value and locker room presence. It also sounds like those treating football as more of a job than an adventure, need not apply.

So, it seems like we know more about the type of player the team will pursue in free agency and it doesn't sound good for fans who are clamoring for the big names and quick fixes. Whether it be Bowe, Wallace, Jennings or anyone else available, they are seemingly going to have to meet and pass the Dolphins strict requirements because, in the words of Steve Ross, "free agency isn't the answer."

It"s wonderful to care about a players' character, however these players don't neccessarily have the talent to be playmakers, which is greatest of all Dolphins needs. As far as I'm concerned, Wake and Thigpen were their only true playmakers. If the Dolphins are to move forward ability to make plays must take priority over character. If you can't make plays character will not win games, nor put fannies in seats, which is also glaring and embarassing

All you clowns talking about Warmack, pretending to have any idea what you're talking about, please spare us.

The Phins are looking for quality guards who can pull & get out in space.

Does he seem like a WC type, pulling athletic guard? Read his scouting reports! He is a power run blocker fit for a power running game. He is NOT the type of Olineman the phins need to help run the WC system.

Yet, we should consider him at 12? Yea, lets take a lineman who doesn't even fit our scheme. Not to mention use your 1st round pick, which with our GM, is about our only chance to find a solid contributor.

HOW ABOUT...NO THANKS!

I swear, some of you type for the sake of typing hoping no one calls you out for your BS. Give us all a break already.

Posted by: LOL | January 09, 2013 at 08:53 AM

100% right!

Warmack is a great guard. He will go high! He will not however:

A. Make it to 12 because a lesser team will snatch him up. Cleveland, Buffalo, Jags.

B. He is not the ideal Guard for a WC zone blocking scheme.

Just because you watch the 2 best teams in College play doesn't mean every one of those good players will fit in Miami.

lol

Jennings is getting old and coming from injury: not good
Wallace had a fantastic 1st half of 2011, but since then has been pedestrian
Bowe is not a true deep threat

Conclusion: neither of the 3 is the answer. Better find soñeone in the draft, or try to trade for Larry Fitgerald. The guy is getting sick and mad in Zona, perhaps a 1st and a 2nd will do the trick

Ross mind is as fuzzy as everything else in this organization. Whether is Ross or Ireland, they always make unclear statements before taking bad decisions. They simply don't know what to say because they don't have a long term and well structured plan for the Dolphins. The just improvise on the way. Then the outcome is something that always surprises the fans or the media and when they realize that their move didn't work out, they just simply shut up or try to justify themselves.
Next year we'll see if Philbin was the right choice or if he's another, Cameron or Sparanus. We'll see if he has the character to impose the team's needs over any other interest Ireland might have.

Draft a player in a first round just to let out jake long, i don t see the progress on the that.

They say it's very lonely at the top. Ross mancrush on Ireland?

Y

trading away marshall was a solid move! tanenhill is the teams leader and dont need drama..he needs guys to make plays and hush up...earn their keep...it turned out to be a good move for marshal going to bears anyways,,,miami needs to stay the course in nfl draft top priority, and add a few ''young qaulity' impact players...hungry players...if miami dont like who is there in nfl draft, move up before then...be aggresive, not sitting back allowing regular superbowl teams to move in and steal playmakers...

why can't ireland be humble, reach out to a guy like jimmy johnson who is a very strong talent evaluator in nfl draft...miami dont need no duds in this draft,,this off season is biggest yet for ireland to get franchise moving forward..if things go good we could see dolphins becoming playoff team as early as next season and year after year...if not it will hurt...

just because you got a lot of cap room does not mean you spend it all right then...you need to draft and keep finances good so you can keep resigning key players year after year like patriots and packers do...they stay competitive year after year like this....the key is and will always be to build in nfl draft first and foremost..not meaning a few key free agents cant be signed...financial responsibility for this franchise for years to come is critical to stay competitive..

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