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Ireland, Dolphins deserve praise for cap situation

Some of you guys are going to hate this post.

As the new league year and free agency nears -- it begins on March 12 at 4 p.m. -- teams must be prepared to be under the salary cap that is estimated to be around $121-$123 million, depending on what source you believe. The NFL will divulge the actual cap ceiling number in the coming days.

[Chris Mortensen of ESPN reports the number will be $123.9 million.]

[Update: The actual figure is $123 million. Mort's math isn't great, apparently, but what's $900k among friends?]

And with that number and March 12 looming, multiple teams have been scrambling either cutting players or restructuring contracts to get under the cap.

The Pittsburgh Steelers, Dallas Cowboys, Oakland Raiders, Philadelphia Eagles, New England Patriots, New York Jets, Buffalo Bills, Detroit Lions, and New Orleans Saints all either cut players or restructured contracts to help create cap room for themselves in the coming weeks.

Other teams, such as the New York Giants, might be ble to do little by way of re-signing their own players because they expect to be knocking their helmets on the cap's ceiling.

Meanwhile, all is well with the Miami Dolphins. All is quiet. Nothing to see here.

Why?

Well, because Jeff Ireland has done an excellent job saving his (or owner Stephen Ross's) pennies the past couple of years and the savings have added up to a boon in cap space this year.

Obviously, the idea that Miami will have major cap space this offseason is not new. I've been telling you about it for months.

But the idea that it truly is not happenstance -- that is took work, foresight and planning by Ireland and executive VP for football administration Dawn Aponte and their staff -- seems to have gone unappreciated. That isn't fair.

Look, when the Dolphins spent wildly after the 2008 and 2009 seasons and at one point had the most expensive offensive line in football and got minimal return on that investment, I pointed it out. Often.

Well, fairness dictates that Miami amassing approximately $48 million in cap space for this offseason -- the third highest total behind Cincinnati and Cleveland -- get equal attention.

It creates a grand opportunity to remake a mediocre team into a winner. And that opportunity didn't just mosey into the picture. It was every bit as planned as a group Harlem Shake.

(Peanut gallery: But Mando, the reason the Dolphins have so much cap space is because they're just a mediocre team that didn't make the playoffs for the fourth year in a row. If you're not in the playoffs, you should have cap space the next offseason.)

Wrong.

Let us refer back to the list of teams above that had to do invasive surgery on their contract structure to get out from under their salary cap ailments. The Bills didn't make the playoffs. Neither did the Jets. Neither did Dallas, Oakland, Philadelphia, Detroit or New Orleans.

Indeed, several had records comparable to Miami. So their rosters last year led them to basically the same results as what the Dolphins got on the field, but then took them to a much rockier path this offseason.

That's not getting optimal bang for the buck. Or quid. Or peso. Or yen. Or euro, which I predict will collapse within five years.

(Peanut gallery: But Mando, having no cap space is not a big deal. All those teams did restructures and they are fine now.)

Wrong again, gallery of nuts.

Restructuring a contract typically treats the symptom but doesn't cure the disease. It alleviates the pain short-term but because the cap burden is piled upon future years that are already burdened, it often creates a dire situation in the future. Some teams that continually delay the inevitable reach a point of saturation that leads to a cap dump.

The Dolphins of the mid 1990s had to do this when Don Shula added lots of players in 1994 and 1995 for what was billed as a final run at a Super Bowl. The franchise found itself in cap heck in 1996 and '97.

The San Francisco 49'ers did the same thing later in the decade and when the bill came due it led the franchise down the losing road from which it only recently detoured.

The point is there is no way to cheat the salary cap. It must be managed wisely to keep a team in position to enjoy its benefits.

Jeff Ireland and his team have done that for 2013. I recognize many of you don't like the idea of giving Ireland credit for much of anything. Those folks understand why I started saying you might not like reading this post.  

Comments

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Joe Robbie wanted to win. Steve Ross just wants to make money.

One last time, maybe.

I will heap praise on this team, Ireland and Ross when they are 8-0 in a regular season.

Anything less than a fast --8 win-- start will always end in disaster if Ireland is GM.


Thats why these jackasses have a fire sale every year and dump their best players and never have a winning season.

Posted by: Its True | March 01, 2013 at 07:56 PM

A fire sale by the Dolphins?

When was the last time they had enough top talent to even consider a fire sale?

Maybe a garage sale.

I'll praise Irescum after he has 5 consecutive winning seasons.....

Dolfan rick I see Odrick being moved inside at some point, especially if Starks leaves. Then we'd have two vet starters, Randall, and then maybe a rook, and an inexpensive free agent to round out that group to start the season.

garrard will help the jets

u think so oscar?

DUSTY ,

ARE YOU STILL LIVING IN THE PAST ?

DID YOU SAY,GARRARD ???

Ross would love a winning team. That would mean more money for him. What happens the year after a team wins the Superbowl? All those new jerseys go on their new fans, people show up to the games, and media wants your team on TV.

Vinny who isn't all about the money, we live in a capitalist society.

DARKOAK...


AT CERTAIN POINT,IT'S NOT ABOUT THE MONEY...WHEN YOU FEW BILLION DOLLARS ,IT'S ABOUT ANY BUT MONEY ..AGREE THAT ROSS WANTS HIS TEAM TO BE UP THERE WITH ELITE TEAMS.......

WHEN YOU HAVE A FEW BILLION

Where are the"lets sign Joe Flacco people?

The Ravens heard you. They signed Flacco to 6yrs 120 million.

Also those debating Flacco a top 5 qb? No longer matters, he's now the highest paid player in nfl history. LOL...

Word is out!

Chris Mortensen reporting Jake Long to be franchised.

One less hole to fill!

YG,,,,,,,, THE FIN FANS ARE SO DUMB AND DONKEY LIKE..THEY NEVER GO AFTER THE GOOD PLAYERS ,BEFORE THEY BECAME GREAT.........


OUR GARAGE MANAGER WORKING ALL SUMMER LONG TO SIGN BUSTS ..

The funny thing is, if it weren't for that fluke last bomb in Denver...Flacco would likely not have been retained.


What a difference a throw makes!

The funny thing is, if it weren't for that fluke last bomb in Denver...Flacco would likely not have been retained.

What a difference a throw makes!
Posted by: Clam | March 01, 2013 at 09:08 PM

Isnt this exactly why they call them "FRANCHISE QB's?"

Posted by: Clam | March 01, 2013 at 09:08 PM

Matt Moore definitely doesnt make that throw. Exactly why Philbin has moved on to Ryan Tannehill.

NO ONE IS PAYING FLACCO 20 MILLION A YEAR BUT US THE FANS ,NO ONE ELSE ....


FLACCO DESERVE THE 20 MILLION BASED ON THE SB GAME HE PLAYED ..

WHAT A DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE DOLPHINS STATE OF AFFAIRS AND THE OTHER ELITE TEAMS.........


WE HAVE (( ARMANDO )) PRAISING OUR GARAGE MANAGER FOR BEING IN THE CELLAR FOR LAST 12 YEARS...............


MEANWHILE,FLACCO IS THE TALK OF THE WORLD ....

I saw nothing about jake getting tagged where did you see this

Isnt this exactly why they call them "FRANCHISE QB's?"

Posted by: Yesterday's Gone 4Ever! | March 01, 2013 at 09:14 PM


Nope, not in this case. That was the most blown defensive coverage in NFL history. Your only job is to prevent a TD on the last throw of the game from 50+ yards out, and they let a receiver get wide open ahead of them.

Carelessness.

120 million for a guy that will never win another SB? I don't think so.

Posted by: Clam | March 01, 2013 at 09:25 PM

Before one can jump to conclussions, one also needs to know the total language of the contract.

Usually before exposing one self by giving such a groundbreakung cotract. One has also introduced language to give oneself a trap door way out.

Cleo Lemnon even makes that throw.

One could argue that Cleo Lemon made the most important throw in post Marino dolphins history! He didn't get 120 mil.

The Ravens won the SB fair and square, they were the best team that day. I still say Harbone choked with the play calling when they had 1st and goal from the 7 at the end of the game. I'd have rolled out Kap four times with option to run or pass, Or just run every play, the Ravens def was really tired. They would have only needed 1.8 yards per carry.

He was mistake free for four playoff games, that's pretty clutch.

Jeff Ireland is an asset stripper!

DONKEYS,,,,,,,,, THE VALUE OF THE RAVENS HAS INCREASED BY 260 MILLION SINCE WINNIG THE SB,,,,,,,,


20 MILLION TO FLACCO IS WAY OVER DUE ...

BTW,,,,LEMON DIDN'T WIN A SB ..

He was mistake free for four playoff games, that's pretty clutch.

Posted by: Darkoak | March 01, 2013 at 09:36 PM


Yeah, but 120 MILLION DOLLARS clutch??? Hardly. Take away the fluke play in Denver and maybe Flacco is the top FA in the offseason.

Another thing about the cap and playoff teams Mando - inthepast 4 years the Cinninati bengals have made the playoffs 3 times - in the past 4 years the Pittsburgh Steelers have made the playoffs 2 times. Cincy has cap space - the Steelers are $20 million over at last count. Its time for some new teams in the AFC - Pittsburgh, New England, even Baltimore - all on the decline.

Lemon did something more important than win a SB, which we already have won. He prevented us from the permanent stain of a 0-16 season.

Cheapskate Ross wont evem spend 120 mill on his own stadium.....let alone 1 player!!!

Understand this people we are totally revamping our skill players on offense do y'all comprehend that this means wr,te,RB and cb on our defense ,,,,,,am I being clear I know a lot of you are rednecks but try to understand

The dolphins will contend this year !!!!!!!!!!!

Marc, pass whatever it is you are smokin.

11-5 will be our record

Cryptic skunk buds dude

Mike the missile Wallace has a nice ring to it

5-11

The dolphins will contend for the top draft choice !!!!!!!!!!!

I wonder why alot of people here refuse to judge Ireland by his "Body Of Work?"

I mean, do you look at what Chris Chambers did here to decide on a Ted Ginn? I swear to God there are some really clueless people here.

Parcells trashed our cap space with a bunch of over-paid, broken down nobody Has-Beens. Not Ireland. ALL these contracts that are expiring.......I repeat: **ALL THESE CONTRACTS** were the work of Bill Parcells.

The idiots that just like to whine and cry are the ones throwing Parcell's so-called work on Ireland. Buy a vowel and hope for a clue morons-LMAO!

Ireland took over and had ONE off-season and draft in which he was trying to upgrade a Daboll/SpOrano led offense and a 3-4 defense. Two VERY HIGH picks from Parcells last draft were Odrick and Misi. Pretty decent guys if you're playing a 3-4 defense. Not so much with a 4-3.

Ross couldn't get the Coach he was after. So Ireland got shafted into a lame duck season with SpOrano and the 3-4 defense. Thank God he got us Pouncey at least.

Now that Ross and Ireland got "Their Coach" and the new system has been installed, he can get to work.

As Parcells train wreck was coming to a close, Ireland's FIRST priority was to clean up the mess. A tough job, but he managed to trim the fat and bring the Cap under controll. No easy feat. In getting rid of Wanna-Be Divas and Dumb, ignorant under achievers, Ireland was also stockpiling picks. Not bad for a first timer cleaning up a Parcell's catastrophe!

He cleaned up the cap, stockpiled some picks and even managed to get us a few good players along the way. That's a nice start compared to what he inherited.

So go ahead and throw around a bunch of retarded anti-Ireland posts. The way you judge him on Parcell's mess just shows your own ignorance.

I don't know if Ireland will ever be a good GM. But he's optimized his chances by getting himself into a pretty good situation. So while you whine and cry about Ireland and blame Parcells mess on him, I'm going to sit back and judge Ireland on HIS OWN BODY OF WORK-ROTFLMAO-SHEESH!

Common Sense 101.

Unappreciated? It isn't fair? Armando please, how about 4 straight years resulting in loosing seasons. Boring team to watch. The laughing stock of the league. Watching other teams advance, win games, make the playoffs, while our team is dead water...once again and again. And not to mention the over-priced "acorns" and draft misses. Yes they have a lot of cap money and draft picks but you'll see, starting march 12th, the let downs and disappointments begin. I seriously doubt we'll see Mike Wallace in a Fins uniform. They'll resign most all the free agents and we'll be prep'd for another 7-9 season once again.

Ireland's Body of Work?? His Body of work is 4 consecutive losing seasons. He's pathetic.

Parcells engineered the biggest turnaround in NFL history with the Dolphins. He had us in the playoffs in one year. A great HOFer. Its been straight downhill since the day he left.

Sending Irescum out to do the Dolfin draft is like sending an 8 yr old out to block Cam Wake. You just close your eyes and hope he doesnt get killed. lol

odinseye,

Once again you took way too many laxatives. You are a blogging bowel movement. LOL!

No diva WR has ever won a SB.....not that I can think of....so he get the benifit of the doubt.....

Kris | March 01, 2013 at 09:36 AM

I usually don't go sooo far back in a post to comment given the author is probably gone but what NFL have you been watching Kris??

Definition of a DIVA WR (High maintenance give me the DAMN ball attention seeker)about right??

In the last 20 Yrs.

Micheal Irvin
Andre Rison
Keyshawn Johnson
Plexico Burress
Santonio Holmes (S.B. MVP)

And that's just off the top of my head!

The fact is that alot of the greats in NFL History have had plenty of DIVA in them during their teams S.B. runs.

The 2000 Ravens were led by at that time their ultimate DIVA turned Evangelist MLB Ray Lewis or for that matter it was ultimate NFL DIVA Deion Sanders bringing his swag to S.F. in 94 that put them over the hump Vs. POWERHOUSE Dallas that Yr. turning around and doing it for Dallas in 95 ect.....

I got NO problem with the DIVA and EGO in some NFL GREATS as long as it doesn't spill into Locker Room Cancer which is were the balancing act comes into play.

Lessee, sometimes the Blog gets better late at night.

lol

Posted by: mike | March 01, 2013 at 11:21 PM

lol doesn't make it funny. just even more boring.

Bill Parcells was a good coach who never won a Super Bowl without Bill Belichick as his assistant. Parcells wanted Belichick to continue to work for him and so it went until Belichick and Robert Kraft put an end to that.

Let's be very clear about Parcells as a personnel executive. He's one of the worst ever and set the Dolphins back big time. The cap mess was Parcells doing because he overpaid linemen that were released and so it went. Parcells has never been respected for his personnel recruiting by NFL insiders.

fin4life,

Andre Rison and Keyshawn Johnson won Super Bowls? Really? With who?

fin4life...I agree. That is what prompted my post earlier:


No diva WR has ever won a SB.....not that I can think of....

Posted by: Kris | March 01, 2013 at 09:36 AM


You are telling us there were no diva receivers on the Steelers and Dallas and St. Louis and Denver SB winners?

promichael,

I was very excited the morning the news broke that Parcells was coming to Miami. I thought all our problems were behind us. You are correct in what you said above. He DID in fact set this franchise back badly.

If Parcells were still here we'd be in the playoffs every year.

promichael - U R right on the money - Parcells can go run another team into the ground. He's terrible and so was that fat fraud Jimma Johnson.

promichelle thinks we should give #1 diva receiver Fitgerald money to the receiver that led the NFL in drops last year, MikaDiva Wallace.

You will see, no GM values him nearly as high as he does.

James Walker over at ESPN has the Dolphins as his surprise team for 2013. I tried to post the article and the link but it didn't post. Worth a read.

This is what's called an 'objective' viewpoint, something a great many Dolphins fans on here seem to have a tough time being. Check it out.

There's a reason Parcells is in the Hall of Fame and Ireland is in the Hall of Shame.

If Parcells was still here - the Dolphins would have the first pick in the draft this year. He's a terrible personnel man and an over rated coach - and he's fat. I love how he drafted Henne and then said that he didn't believe in henne before he left.

Saying Irescum is better then Bill Parcells is like saying Chad Henne is better then Dan Marino.

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