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The reason the Dolphins did nothing on Monday

The Dolphins carried on Monday, business as usual, while other NFL teams undergoing change fired their coaches and one fired both their coach and general manager.

The reason for the relative calm?

According to a source familiar with the situation, Dolphins owner Stephen Ross had never expected Monday would be about possibly firing general manager Jeff Ireland or head coach Joe Philbin and so he wasn't prepared to do either.

The Dolphins owner instead expected Monday to be about his team preparing for a playoff game next weekend.

And that, Ross planned, meant the Dolphins brass would have remained status quo going forward -- with Ireland as the GM and Philbin as the coach in 2014.

But the Dolphins not only lost their penultimate game against Buffalo but their season-finale against the New York Jets as well. And that changed everything.

Suddenly an owner who expected to be making no change at GM or head coach this offseason was forced to begin considering just that.  And that, the source says, is exactly what is happening.

Ross is, as he told The Miami Herald Sunday afternoon, "looking at everything."

He is weighing all his options. He is consulting with trusted people. He is considering the ramifications of standing pat as well as making moves.

Understand that this can be complicated.

Fans and even media can call for the ouster of this person or that with no ramifications. Ross doesn't have that luxury. If he decides to fire someone, he has to have a plan in place that he believes will lead to a better situation than the current one.

He cannot, for example, simply fire Ireland and keep Philbin -- the sceanario believed most likely -- without weighing how he would replace his general manager. Would he conduct a search that would be hamstrung by the fact he's already got a coach on board? Would he conduct a search for a GM candidate to whom he'd give authority to fire Philbin? Would he promote a GM from within?

Ross also must consider if he wants to change the structure of the organization.

Does he want a GM and a coach who report only to him, which is the Dolphins current structure? Does he want to hire a czar of sorts to whom the coach and GM would report? Does he want to simply stand pat and not fire anyone?

The Dolphins did nothing on Monday. But apparently owner Stephen Ross was working.


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The most important thing is that he is thinking things through carefully.
That is how decisions of this magnitude should be made.

Fire Ireland, Philbin, offensive line coach, defensive coach, offensive coach, and Tannehill! Hire Gruden and any general manager but Ireland.

BUT the most important thing is this: Either fire both the coach and GM or keep both.
DO NOT fire Ireland and force Philbin onto the next GM. That is the height of dysfunction.

Anyone who is blaming Tannehill today is a buffoon. He carried this team with no pass protection or running game for the majority of the year.

Does it really matter? Whatever decision he makes, it will prove wrong. There is no reason to believe that this organization will ever get its act together. Everything this organization touches turns to crap. Seriously, someone give me a reason to believe that things will change.

So Ross had no idea we suck. Are U F'N kidding me??

It's a fine line between being a hero and an ***hole. IMO you can't fire one without the other. But Philbin has to get rid of Sherman. What a disaster. I'll suffer one more year then put my fanship up for tender.

Hey, 8-8 is pretty good for these scrubs.

You know we stink when we have D Thomas and M Egnew on the roster.

If it takes Ross a little longer to realize changes need to be made, so be it.

If, however, it takes him longer to come to the conclusion he'll make no changes at a time when change clearly needs to happen, he'll only seal in fans' minds that he's a doddering fool who has no idea what he's doing, and he can kiss any hopes of transforming this franchise into a winner goodbye.

Let me quote the inane, "fire everybody and hire Gruden" (or insert any name here). These are such dumb comments. I remember the "hire Bill Parcells" mantra from a lot of you who the next two years were calling for his firing. It truly sucks to see the melt down that just occurred. It was ugly and it was a ugly year. But this team needs to continue to add the pieces, to build continuity, and see where next year takes us. Do any of you ever learn from your own mistakes? Can you cut a new coach some slack? Once again you knee jerkers want to blow up the house because the garage door quit working. I say let it ride one more year Steve Ross.

"According to a source familiar with the situation, Dolphins owner Stephen Ross had never expected Monday would be about possibly firing general manager Jeff Ireland or head coach Joe Philbin and so he wasn't prepared to do either.

The Dolphins owner instead expected Monday to be about his team preparing for a playoff game next weekend."

Isn't this exactly why this franchise sits at the door of mediocrity right now? Did not Ross watch all 16 games this season? With such controversy surrounding Jeff Ireland for so long, even in extending him, did he not already have a plan B in place.

This is the exact kind of cluelessness, all the way to the very top, that has knowledgeable fin fans losing all hope this franchise will ever be successful again with Ross as its head.

Mr. Ross, respectfully I ask, "why buy a team if you haven't much of a clue of how to successfully run it?" Even as a fan and deep pockets one would do his team far less good than harm. Franchises with football clueless owners almost never win.

Dusty, Sigh, Sammie, and Sam I Am.

Last night a troll was attacking you guys using my blog name. Wasn't me. I don't write like that and show respect to everyone I disagree with (except for Marco). So I suspect he is the culprit and also the one that Bill A accuses of using his handle. He may have done this before and I just didn't catch it since I have a life outside of this blog. Well, lesson learned. Need to show respect even to those who haven't earned it.

Ireland has had five years to make this team into a contender. He can't blame Bill Parcells any more or Dez Bryant's mother. Joe Philbin has only been there for two years but he is responsible for hiring Mike Sherman who was FIRED from Texas A&M. He also hired Coyle who has turned our defense into doormats. For this he has to take responsibility. He thinks Mike Sherman is an excellent coach. To be a great leader you have to make tough decisions and look past the fact that Sherman was your English Teacher. I truly believe that continuity more than talent builds elite teams. That's why it pains me to say "Light it up and burn it to the ground." Please just someone beat the Patriots.

Please if anyone has to go its Irelend your telling me with all the money and draft picks he had this year that's the best he could come up with . Not one draft pick really contributed and only two free agents did well . Fire him like yesterday please already!!!!

Posted by: Sam I Am | December 31, 2013 at 01:02 AM

Best post I ever read of yours, Sam. Couldn't agree more. Owner is clueless and it will be pure luck if he finds the right person to set him straight.

That said, I'm out of here and won't be posting again. Not as TomJeff. The trolls are targeting me and I don't have the patience of Bill A to put up with that nonsense. Later and good luck to all the true Fin fans. We're going to need it.

Uh...Jon Gruden...on record, not interested. In ANY HC job. He makes $5mil working 1000x less hours on MNF.

Jay Gruden would require sh*tcanning Philbin. And, probably Ireland. Ross eats millions and waits for Bengals to lose. Unlikely.

For 2014, something tells me Ross probably 'has' Philbin can Sherman and all his relatives (Taylor and Turner)...or else. Philbin and Ireland get one more year.

Chudzinski is available as an OC as are others. Multiple OL coaches fired today or otherwise available.

The problem with Ross is he hasn't a clue, even though he is an owner, the team itself actually belongs to the fans. He sees himself as "all sovereign" and fans as "necessary evils" that comes with the turf.

Mr. Ross, these were the "MIAMI" Dolphins before you came along, and likely will still be the "MIAMI" Dolphins long after you.

Nowhere in the NFL does it states, "These are the STEVEN ROSS Dolphins". No matter how much money you paid. You are an owner who seemingly ever listens to your fan base. Except in your little PR bs-capades.

Right now, you truly show the fans how much you listen to them. At the end of the day, its all about Steven Ross' voice and your voice only.

It all comes down to horrible personnel decisions. Every draft guru out there said Tannehill was middle to bottom of the 2nd round and raw. We take him 8th overall?? Consequently he has no pocket presence or down field accuracy, he just simply did not have enough experience as a quarterback or maybe he just doesn't have the skills period. Moving up to take Jordan and then hardly playing him, moving up for Thomas, Egnew, the list of draft failures goes on and on. Why can we never develop our own talent? Why must we keep overpaying for other team's free agents that subsequently fail to materialize when they get here? The answer to these questions rests with the GM.

Posted by: Jakethesnake | December 31, 2013 at 01:16 AM

Jake, the only real snake is called Steve Ross. How can he be a real dolfan. He knows less about football than even the most clueless fan I've ever seen post in this blog.

But, then there's money, big gargantuan money. When having this kind of money you can get away with nearly anything. Including faking you're a fan as an owner.

I'm out. Cant take this anymore. Steven Ross has sunken to new low.

I think most of you are missing the blog's central POINT (in addition to misspelling Stephen Ross' name): He has to have an viable alternative. You don't just plug in, for ex., Bucs' freshly fired GM or God forbid, Scott Pioli or the first person with a pulse. There are contracts and personalities and players and agents and money...and more money involved. Fans...way down the list...although owners will pander in public.

Whiners: Dolphins have appreciated financially for Ross since he bought the franchise...not that it matters much to him. Guys like JJ and Snyder and other owners can do WHATEVER they want. WAIT.

Two words ....Jim harbaugh....look at the pattern great coaches makes things happen ...Philbin is a probably a good asst. but no HC.. As for Tanny he needs a good Oc and qb coach to help him. But I do not c the it factor in him like others. Fire everyone. Get lovey smith.

Its been straight downhill since Parcells left.

If we have the talent to beat NE (#2 seed), Cincy (#3), Indy (#4), SD (#6) and have the #2 seed in the NFC (Car) pretty much dominated all game (until Coyle's bend but dont break D finally broke), then it is not a matter of not having the talent. However, losing two games with your playoff lives on the line and in the manner in which those games were lost (lifeless, un-inspired, and un-prepared) rests on the coaching staff.

AS: I give up. Idiots and drinks.

AJ, u mean since Jimmy left.

Tannehill is just terrible. Really pathetic. The experiment has failed exactly like Henne did.

You have to got be kidding me with drivel of excuses!

Amazing to me the iq of finfans.

Just get rid of the coordinators.

Ireland gets one more year cuz of Philbin

Philbin gets one more year.

If they fail again next year you blow it up.

As bad as things were they easily could've won 10 games

Imagine the success if they get better line play and therefore running game and protection

Sherman and Coyle are the weak links at this point.

Here comes Ben McAdoo

FinsReality says...... Decisions on fire-not-to-fire will not happen until the NFL investigation of the Martin/Incognito affair is complete. Also, remember that the advisory team of JasonT+ (appointed by the owner) will weigh-in on the outcome. Armando, your narrow point of view is missing this obvious input element.

As a diehard Fin I have to say this is a very sad time for our organization. To reflect upon our season there were some very troubling acts in our unit that has to be address. For instance, the Bullying Scandle causes for at least the offensive coaches department to be let go so we can have no management. Joe Philpin will be calling the offensive plays. Jeff Ireland should be fired so a Native of Miami, should be brought in as Football GM. The GM must have a definsive mentality with an understanding of life in the NFL.

Tannehill had a great opportunity to put his stamp on this team; unfortunately, his finger got in the way of his nose.

Need Pennington as QB coach a new O-coordinator a 3-4 defensive coordinator and a new o-line coach. One more year for Philbin and Ireland to prove it and get to the playoffs.


I would suspect that Ross will hire a Football operations Czar and have Ireland report to him. Someone who can oversee Ireland and keep him from making anymore dumb personnel acorn type decisions. Someone who will come in and fire the DC and OC which really needs to be done. Go back to the 3-4 defense that will work better for the current personnel and certainly the most needed change should be firing OC Mike Sherman who should retire. The Czar can not be a dinosaur as Big Bill Parcells who needs to remain retired.

Philbin called the plays in Green Bay. Give him one more year in Miami with direct voice and control on play call.....Then we decide on Joe.

How about a Scott Pioli & Greg Schiano combination?. The Fins need a better talent recruiter and Pioli is the only available that's better than Ireland, and they need a tough coach who toughen a few players there. I get a feeling that Schiano has learned from his mistakes and will do a better job at his next coaching opportunity (ie Belicheck).

I like Ireland and Philbin, but if there's a change this year, I'll do it now for that combination.

You raaaaang...?

Moreover Armando,

The Dolphins need a Czar to take a fresh look at T-hill to perhaps evaluate drafting another QB and also opening up the competition for a starting QB with Matt Moore or another veteran.

Man, the slack jawed weirdos come out for the late show, huh?

My ideal choice would be Eric DeCosta from Baltimore, but he's not available due to the recent contract extension he signed with the Ravens.

I agree with your article Armando, If you fire Ireland the new GM will want to bring in a new coach. And of course if you fire Philbin it will be difficult to hire a good coach with Ireland still the new GM. There has two bee accountability for the Dolphins having two complete meltdowns with the playoffs on the line. I cant see any other solution than to fire Ireland and Philbin at the same time. The way the Dolphins played the last two games with no fire, no passion, and no sense of urgency is completely unacceptable for all of us loyal dolphins fan. Its OK to loose a game when you don't have enough talent but to loose to the Bills and Jets when the Dolphins played like zoombies is wrong. To keep anyone in the coaching staff and the GM is an insult to all the Dolphin Fans

way to many tears for so many fair weather fans.Teams predicted us worse then 9-8 but we want to fire the whole lot.

matt moore seriously? How can you seriously talk about firing people but bring up matt moore as a qb challenger of the future?What a joke

Our best player on the team is our Punter. That says it all. For the last two years Philbin has been a robot on the sidelines with no emotion and doesnt get his players ready for games. Philbin is a nice guy but is not hc job material

Philbin did not call the plays in Green Bay. Head coach did!!
Fire the whole coach staff and GM and restructure.
Get a football guy to be team president. Give him the power to hire a GM and work with that GM to get a coach. No retred HC. Get an established OC he actually runs the offense and called the plays or poach an innovative college coach. Work off the Arians coaching tree. The guy has gotten it done in Pittsburgh, Indy and made a pretty quick turnaround in Arizona. We want high octane. How about some one willing to use all of tannehill's skills. Like running the ball.

Also in reply to some one above. I don't remember a single draft guy putting tannehill in the low 1st, high 2nd round area.

Philbin made gave a statement that the players should not be blamed that it was the HC responsibility. I think he is completely wrong. EVERYONE IS TO BLAME from the top down. No offensive line, no running game, a quarterback that can not hit open receivers, receivers having problems catching the ball and especially the play calling was horrendous .

And now the defense: can't stop the run. I think it is time to start over again. Starting with Ireland picks players on the draft that are injured before they can play and they didn't help this team at all this year. Waste of draft picks. Well let me stop here since you all know everything that has happened and I don't need to continued. It makes me sick. Sorry for the rambling. It is ashame that if Ross doesn't start from scratch the team is going to lose more fans than what they have lost already.

It's a miracle we ended up 8-8 and could've easily been 12-4 despite the oline. I think our defense did a good job this year. Not great, but good enough to win every game(minus the Saints game). We were terrible that game. If we only had a desent offense. We need someone to fix the oline to be more balanced with our running game. Sherman made some terrible calls this year that I feel cost us games. But could it be that he had no faith in the oline either? Did THill development get hindered by poor oline? Can he perform in clutch situations? Can he connect with the long ball?

Who said it's been downhill since Parcells left? Huge underestimation. It's been downhill since 1972.

It is one thing to be good and it is another thing to be great. It is also another thing to ignore the all of the indications of failure. The biggest mistake was that Stephen Ross did not proactively make changes. He must assume the responsibility for what has happened to this organization and demonstrate his effectiveness as a leader.

Joe Philbin is a good person but it is evident that he is neither an effective leader or manager. Actually, the same can be said for the GM, OC, DC, and all of the assistants.

In essence; it is time for the organizational culture of the Miami Dolphins to undergo a much needed change.

The thing that gets me is how boring, unenthusiastic, emotionless the team is. Then I see philbin on the sideline and I cannot help but think the team is a reflection of him. I know this, if I wanna take a nap on Sunday just turn the dolphins on, because hgtv will keep me awake.

This I know we had several melt downs this year. First being the Martin situation and coming into only needing 1 victory against to below .500 teams. Now if we played tough and barely got beat i would say it was just not our time. But we didn't we were blown out by both teams.Martin situation Philbin(head coach)fault,two loses end of season team unprepared once again head coaches fault. This team Irelands fault. Bottom line get an experianced Head coach/GM in that has hada decent track record. Shula hired from colts early 70's type coach and GM. Philbin may be a great assistant coach but not head. Mr.ross from a lifetime Dolphin fan and former football coach please get a hard nosed motivator in. This is not an office setting it is a football team!!!

It's so simple you'd expect even this moronic fan base to reason it through. Let me help. If the talent was enough that they should've won their last two games then Ireland can't be the problem.

If Ellerbee and Wheeler had career seasons last year while on other teams, and Dansby and Burnett had career years elsewhere then Ireland isn't the problem.

If the backs are under utilized in the passing game that's not Ireland's fault.

If Wallace is lined up predictably every game that's not Ireland's decision.

And if Tannehill's mobility isn't used as an advantage to keep defense's from sacking him Ireland has nothing to do with that. That's all coaching not talent acquisition.

It's precisely because there's so much talent on this team that everyone's disappointed if not shocked.

Enough Scott Pioli! He ran KC onto the ground. He's not the reason KC is in the playoffs. Ireland arguably has a better track record than Pioli.

Posted by: FormFactor | December 31, 2013 at 05:28 AM

All excellent points! However, I do think there is one are where talent is severely lacking. We need an offensive line makeover in a big way!

For whatever reason, that area seems to never get properly addressed. That IS an Ireland problem to some extent and a coaching issue as well,since they didn't scheme to take advantage of our players strengths.


Pioli had KC stocked with great personnel and was considered by many experts as the best bad record team to take over due to the personnel. The personnel was provided by the guy you just disregarded. You are clueless. Scott Pioli could become the Czar to oversee the football operations.

Dusty, Sigh, Sammie, and Sam I Am.

Last night a troll was attacking you guys using my blog name. Wasn't me. I don't write like that and show respect to everyone I disagree with (except for Marco). So I suspect he is the culprit and also the one that Bill A accuses of using his handle. He may have done this before and I just didn't catch it since I have a life outside of this blog. Well, lesson learned. Need to show respect even to those who haven't earned it.

Posted by: Marco | December 31, 2013 at 01:05 AM

Looks like baby TomJeff was using some else's name last night now cries that someone used his... pathetic TomJeff.

Posted by: Fake GM | December 31, 2013 at 12:26 AM

You didn't even watch the games this year did you. Tsumnaihill against the Jets had all day and missed wide open targets, he has done this all year long.

Chad Henne is as good a QB as #17. We have to move on from him and will when a new GM gets here. We will keep him and let him compete, but it won't take long to get him out of here, as he won't have Sherman to hold his hand and call 'simple vanilla', passing plays to mask his limited range of throws and skill sets.

Tanny was ranked 24th in the NFL on QBR, not good enough and never will be folks.

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