First off, let me start today by telling you that Dolphins In Depth just had its most successful year ever. Thank you. This blog logged nearly 6.5 million page views in 2012 and it was because you, Dolphins fans and others that apparently enjoy tweaking Dolfans, come here regularly to discuss, debate, and otherwise entertain yourselves with all things NFL and Miami Dolphins. My mission is to improve the product in 2013. My mission is to continue to earn your time on a daily basis. Thanks again.
Today is the start of the NFL postseason with two games on the schedule, two more Sunday, and obviously more next weekend and the one after.
Unfortunately for all of us, the Dolphins closed up shop on this season last week. For the fourth consecutive year and 10th time in 11 years, the team is not in the playoffs.
I've lived it. I've covered every moment. And frankly, I cannot believe the level of ineptitude it takes to fall to such depths. I mean, tradtiional disasters such as Arizona and Cincinnati have been more successful getting to or advancing in the playoffs than Miami the past decade. The Houston Texans joined the NFL in 2002 and in the span that Miami made only one mirage appearance in the postseason, the Lone Star team became an NFL powerhouse -- which also hasn't ever lost to Miami, by the way.
So even an expansion team that started from scratch passed the Dolphins like a Corvette passes a VW Bug.
Anyway, we all know 2013 must be a big year for the Dolphins. I know it. You know it. We know it because we're tried of perpetually building something or preparing for something or taking time getting to someting and the something is always an air sandwich to chew on. We're borderline ready for a revolt against this team, some of us are.
I wonder if the Dolphins know it? We'll find out Monday because owner Stephen Ross is scheduled to meet with the South Florida media around lunchtime for a little informal chat.
This is what I must hear from Ross:
*That he recognizes the Dolphins are in a playoff drought and he intends to end the thirst in 2013. Or else he'll change direction.
*That he knows the Dolphins have approximately $46.8 million in salary cap space available (give or take a million) and that he will allow the Dolphins to spend to the cap. (Wayne Huizenga used to do let his football people spend to the cap every year. It doesn't guarantee success, but it does guarantee flexibility).
*That the logo and uniform change that is coming and tentatively scheduled for an April reveal (Yeah, just broke news here) won't embarrass a team with so much tradition. Remember, Ross is the guy who doesn't much like the tradional fight song and tried to replace it with a T-Pain version that bombed. I know the Dolphins have high expectations for the new logo and uni. I trust club CEO Mike Dee's wisdom and he's heading the project. I know the Dolphins expect folks will love the changes. I guess I have lower expectations. I'm just hoping it doesn't suck, thus making the team look like a modern circus version of the 1980s Houston Astros (research their unis and you'll understand). I've covered some bad Dolphins teams down through the years. I guess I just don't want to cover a team that dresses like a joke, too.
*Finally, I want from Ross an explanation of what he believes went wrong in 2012 and what he expects will be done to turn those wrongs to rights. I want this because if one can identify a problem, it increases the chances of solving the problem. I've seen too many coaches, general managers and even players fail to identify the problems that plague then thus not be able to solve those issues. Recognition is the first step toward finding a solution.
[BLOG NOTE: Come back Sunday as we'll discuss a column I'm writing on the player I believe is Miami's most important priority to re-sign this offseason. I'll explain why and link to the column. And one final thing: The Herald, through me, is going to have a no-impersonator policy starting now. A handful of people have already been banned before the New Year began. It's going to get more strict now. You do it once, you will be banned. Post whatever you like under your own name. But don't steal someone else's name to try and ruin their reputation. Please.]