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A second look at finalist possibilities

So who are the finalists?

Ever since my report saying the Dolphins will this weekend be interviewing the finalists for the vacant general manager job, the one thought on everyone's mind has been ... who are these guys?

Well, there seems to be much speculation and some confusion about that so allow me to dive in with my own speculation and confusion.

Late last night I was told by one NFL source two candidates who are definitely out are Pittsburgh's Omar Khan and Tennessee's Lake Dawson. Others reported the same thing. I don't care about them. That was wrong. I'm correcting me.

Khan is indeed out. Dawson, however, is in, multiple sources are telling me this morning. Dawson was always in. He is indeed a finalist for the job.

This ties closely with the fact Dawson had a good interview in Miami.

There are others and here is where the speculation begins:

I'm guessing Dolphins in-house candidate Brian Gaine will be a finalist. I have not been told this beyond doubt. But I do know the Dolphins recognize the respect Gaine has around the league. I know how he fits in being able to work with ownership, coach Joe Philbin and executive vice president of football administration Dawn Aponte.

One thing I must tell you about Gaine's candidacy that doesn't apply to any other is he's a known quantity. He has been in the Dolphins war room on draft day with owner Stephen Ross and Philbin so they know what he's like on that day. That's a view the Dolphins don't have on any other candidate.

The Dolphins also have his reports on players -- assuming he wrote some -- they can refer to. So I assume the Dolphins know with certainty how much Gaine hit and missed on players. They know whether he was truly a driving force in the chase for Cameron Wake, as has been reported, or not really.

(I was told that like everyone else in the building, Gaine was very much for getting Wake but expressed doubts about paying him the kind of guarantees the Dolphins paid him as someone jumping from the CFL).  

At any rate, my guess is Gaine will be a finalist.

I know others had great interviews with the Dolphins and I believe those resonated.

One of those is Cleveland's Ray Farmer. He was among the first candidates interviewed and I reported then he impressed in that interview.

Two things on Farmer:

He has a powerful ally in the room in that Carl Peterson, the former Kansas City Chiefs general manager and president and current Ross advisor, loves Farmer. Peterson hired Farmer in Kansas City. Peterson is intimately familiar with Farmer's abilities and potential and has passed those along to Ross.

One complaint I hear about Farmer is he's working for the Cleveland Browns. And if there is one franchise that is on the lips of NFL critics more than the Dolphins it's the Browns. So, readers continually ask me, why hire someone from the Browns?

Well, Farmer went to the Browns in 2013. He's been there one season.

I don't think you can blame the years of struggles the Browns have suffered on someone who has been in the organization one season.


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When you go back to the '08 draft, our biggest need was CB. We're sitting at 25, you take the best CB available. In the second round they took Smith, highly regarded by most. Now if you guys can see flaws in that logic please enlighten us.

A little bit of perspective for fukks sake, instead of looking at everything in a vacuum.

Those 2nd round picks are indeed garbage except for Smith and I'm a big Taylor fan.

Just because a pick is not with the team anymore doesn;t mean it wasn't a good pick.

We are talking about player evaluation here.

Trading a player away is roster management - that is a whole different part of being a GM and in my opinion the more difficult.

The draft these days - there's so much information on these guys. Most of us can have a decent draft from our desks. however figuring out how much each player should be paid and whether he should be retained/traded/released is much more impactful and much more difficult and takes the most time for a new gm to figure out.

So tell me MassD, what grade should four time pro bowlers be given. Show me one other Gm in Ireland's time to select a four time pro bowler? (Hint: it hasn't happened)

So MassDolphan,

Long goes to FOUR Pro Bowls and he gets a D? Whats your measuring stick for getting a better grade than a D. Obviously Jeff Fisher thinks he sucks too. He just gave him $36 million over years. Your logic is VERY flawed.

And Matt Ryan's accomplishments to date are?......besides getting a new $100 million contract?

It's gonna be Xander AND Farmer!


The only thing I can think of is the coaching staff has more faith in wheeler than Jordan. I'm not a hater of the Jordan pick. I hope he becomes the player your predicting he becomes. I'm not upset they got him. I just hated the fact they traded up to get him. I felt this team would have been better off staying at 12 or trading down and getting extra picks with so many needs and then using the extra second on Albert to play LT.

To me that would have been a more successful draft. But hey we had Jonathan Martin to anchor our line so really Albert wasn't needed. Lmao

Jeff Ireland, worst GM in NFL history?

So no white smoke yet from Davie, oh well at least DawnJoe gave roses to a few eligible candidates in Farmer, Dawson, Gaine and Some other dude.

It took the Vatican less time to pick a pope! Methinks Gaine gets the nod. Personally I think Farmet is the best out of a crappy lineup. Either way this will be a mess. One can only hope Philbin grow as a HC. A good start would be to fire Taylor and Turner, both unqualified to do their jobs as the results so painfully demonstrated. Anything less and it will indicate more of the same ol.

True leaders surround themselves with the best and lead. It seems Philbin surrounded himself with a lot of inexperience, I guess he thinks that will make him look good. The hiring of Lazor is a good sign but it is imperative Taylor and Turner are shown the door.

Finally if Philbin does not realize the 3-4 is a much, much better fit for his personnel in D then we will be in trouble again. If Coyle is incapable of running it he too should go.

Some of these discussions are about as useless as talking about The Biebs or Rob Ford.

Mark in Toronto,
Why do you say you're in Toronto when it's obvious your here in Never Never land with me. *wink,wink* muahhh


To say long gets a D grade shows your lack of intelligence. The guy was a franchise tackle for us and played the same way with the rams this year until he got hurt. Injuries do not diminish your talent level. Long was the best pick Ireland made. Clay I'd say is second. What grade do you give clay?.

I'm not and will never be an Ireland fan but will give credit where it's due

Parcells drafted Long

Jake Long was a Parcell's pick, Parcell's was in the War Room and any fool that thinks Ireland picked him is delusional


Ireland was with parcells at the time. Bill had final say but I'm sure Ireland was on board with the pick.

No media person is going to do this, but the elephant in the room is Mando's line at the bottom of the post: "And if there is one franchise that is on the lips of NFL critics more than the Dolphins it's the Browns. So, readers continually ask me, why hire someone from the Browns?"

The Dolphins are a laughingstock. They are dysfunctional to the point where prime candidates are running in the other direction when the team calls.

This is ON ROSS.

And it's time the Miami media starts to question Ross' STEWARDSHIP of OUR team.

Additionally, if you're as embarrassed failure after failure. Buffoon move after buffoon move. The crap logo and uniforms.

STOP BUYING TICKETS. One thing will make Ross sell: An empty stadium. ONE SEASON of empty seats and the message will be sent.

Boycott Ross.

D29, I don't hate the Jordan pick eitehr and I would not have traded up. Actually, I would've stayed still and picked the BPA which wuld've been Sheldon Richardson - who despite playing a different position is a comparable talent to Jordan - and you keep ur 2nd pick which could've been used to pick Jamie Collins who is pretty much a DIon jordan clone.

hire farmer and lets get to work

boy cott have u not been watching, stadium has been empty for years

yeah, like Ireland even had a say in that #1 overall pick

ross = titanic

Let's at least wait to see the final roster before we start boy cotting.


I would have been fine with your plan as well. I want Eifert at 12. This year I'm hoping for Ebron but knowing my luck the fins will draft a punter who specializes in placing the ball inside the 20.

Ireland is old news.
Move on you bumbs.

ebron will most likely be gone. my fuirst choice is the corner from nebraska

I'll take a franchise pro bowl QB in Matt Ryan over Jake Long with that 1st pick everytime. QB is much more valuable position than LT ever will be.
And alot of people think Ryan Clady was/is a better LT than Long.
This is why the team sucks - LTs are picked over franchise QBs.
Looking back, would anyone in their right mind select Jake Long over Matt Ryan with the very first pick of the 2008 draft? Alot of us said it was bone headed back then, and it still is.

do horse crabs have shells?

mass u can do that with basically every single draft ever

Hire me, I'll trade for Adrian Peterson, 2nd roun pick this year, 1st rond pick next year and we'll throw in Daniel Thomas and our disgruntled tackle jonathon Martin, if Peterson rushes for 1500 yards over next 2 years we'll give up a 3rd round pick in 2017 to boot. Draft best tackle guard we can get in first round, sign Jarius Bird as free agent, let Clemons walk, sign 2 best FA O lineman we can find, bring back Grimes and Solia....we should also consider trading Wake to a contender for a late 1st rounder....

D29, Eifert was the #2 player on my board remaining at 12 after Sheldon so I would've been ok with that too. I will admit that I would've been reluctant to part with a 2nd rd pick for Albert last year but this year they better go hard after him. he's their best bet to fix the LT situation for a while.

I too prematurely like the idea of an Ebron or a Mike Evans or Kelvin Benjamin at 19. Get a guy that will score TDs in short areas on this team - especially if Tannehill doesn't progress enough on the long pass. Give this guy some easy throws.

How many playoff games has Matt Ryan won?


If not Ebron then Clinton Dix. This team sorely needs a thumper like an earl Thomas at the back end of the defense. Chris Clemons sux. Just ask jimmy graham

MassD, nobody is arguing that Ryan should've been the pick in hindsight - noteven Parcells. But it doesn't mean jake Long was a D draft pick. Two different things, man.

then take the corner from neb dolfan, dude is huge and a playmaker

ryan is 60-34! with 4 trips to playoffs already

Mass D

Ryan has been a great player but look who he had around him. When jones and others went down. Matty ice started to pile up the turnovers and he led them to four wins. Franchise QBS overcome injuries. See Tom Brady when making this arguement.

Remember to that without a great left tackle a qb doesn't stand a chance. See Jonathan Martin on this point

Hi Mark!

I'll be going back to Tonto ver.... I mean Toronto very soon. I just hate the cold, and it's below zero here in the States where I am now skiing

dusty, u want to mention the player's name or does he a have copyright law infringement protecting it or something?

The pro bowl is not the only measuring stick:
Jake Long - 1 time 1st team all pro
Ryan Clady - 2 time 1st team all pro

Long wasn't even the best left tackle in that draft.

Then don't come here, it's -20 deegrees C here right now.

Dusty, Jean-baptiste is the 12th rated CB by CBS right now...

I agree Long was not a D pick (he's probably the best pick that was made during Ireland's tenure, as far as quality of player). But just looking at the player is seeing things in a vacuum too. How many Playoff teams was Long on? Exactly, it's about putting together a FULL TEAM, elite players, role players, depth, quality coaching, etc. And Miami (see I'm not singling out 1 person who's at fault) has been atrocious in this aspect. Long did well with a top-level QB (Pennington) but then did miserable with a back-of-the-pack QB (Henne). OL was good a couple of those years, and not that good a couple too (not as bad as this past year). The year's Long's OL were good, we had no WRs (unless you count Ted Ginn, Jr. as a #1). Defense was good a couple of those years, and not that good a couple.

Also, people are right to say Ireland's picks were better the later in the Draft they came. That's fine, but you usually don't find elite talent there. And what we missed too many years was elite talent all over the field. Another of Ireland's problems, his picks weren't Day 1 starters who made a difference. In today's NFL, with FA, with bodies breaking down, with a "show me now" attitude, you can't wait half a decade until players develop into successes. ESPECIALLY if you started with pretty much nothing.

So while individual choices might have been successful (in that today they are good players today), that's only part of the battle. The reason Ireland and Sparano aren't here is because they couldn't put it all together to win 9+ football games. And Philbin only need to look to the 3 years before he got here to see his future if he follows suit.

Does the fact Farmer was with Cleveland when they traded for Bess reflect poorly on him?

dolfan eli coulndt overcome them this year, dont tell me hes not a franchise guy

dolfan manning lost the second best lt in the game this year and still had the best season ever by a qb

hindsight is 20/20, do you want to be inside your own horse? keep it up!!!

love to have him mark, love to. film on this kid is insane

MassD, again, mqan, nobody is arguing that it wasn't the best pick for us - but a D pick??? D pick indicates bum - four time pro bowler - whether it's the only measutring stick or not - does not indicate bum - actually indicates otherwise. If he was able to stay a bit healthier and get one or two more pro bowls, he would be a hall of famer .

DC, I actually agree with some of your post at 1:00 - I beleive early on, given the option, you should eb picking elite playmakers - why at 19 I would like to see if there's a skill position player available worthy of the pick before we pick another lineman.

Always find linemen in free agency - expensive or not - elite skill position players in their prime in free agency? next to never.

corner bax sux

WEAKNESSES: Not nearly as physical as his size would indicate, especially when tackling. Frequently relies on ducking his head and swiping at the legs of ballcarriers. Could be viewed by some as a potential safety convert but hasn't played this position before and will need to develop more physicality and reliability as an open-field tackler.

While fluid in changing directions, is susceptible to double-moves because he doesn't possess ideal initial burst and possesses just fair straight-line speed, overall

Trivia question, is this the scouting report on jean-Baptiste or Sean Smith?

I haven't seen him play and have no opinion on him - but this is what is ebing said of him...


Who did Eli lose off his offense to compare what Ryan lost. Eli was a turnover machine this year. Eli has helped the giants to two Super Bowl wins so I'd say he's more a franchise guy than Ryan. What has Ryan ever won?.

I'm not a hater on Ryan at all. I'm defending the fact that long was a solid pick and played great for the fins during his time here. If Ryan had the start to his career that say a Brady had then I would agree that the dolphins dropped the ball. As it were right now Ryan hasn't done much in terms of overall success and hasn't won a Super Bowl to date

With Peyton. He lost his LT in clady but Peyton is just that awesome talent who can overcome a loss like that. Ryan is no Peyton


Don't we have 6 WRs on contract this year? And this wide receiver is going to fix which of our most pressing needs? OL, DT, OLB, RB......? It's been said that the BPA is the 'BPA that's fits your team'!

And Benjamin? We have, at present, only 3 picks in the top 3 rounds. And we're going to pick Benjamin? We NEED 2-3 OL, a DT, definitely a RB and possibly an OLB. When you try to find that 'difference maker' out side the top 3, in reality, your only using an educated guess as to the usefulness of that pick.

Albert and Byrd and then have a good draft. Drafting for need and drafting for the 'BPA that fits' are two completely different concepts.


Ypu talk a lot of shyte man....

Where is it written that you 'always take the franchise QB over the LT'. Here's a clue for you.....its not written anywhere.

The reality is NOBODY knows if a QB is or isn't a 'franchise' QB. so by your rule, the Chargers were right to take Ryan Leaf, the Raiders were right to pick Jemarcus Russell, the Browns were right to pick Tim Couch and the Texans were right to pick David Carr.

Total nonsense....I can shoot holes in that theory from a mile away.

Matt Ryan was a top 10 qb last year ...

yeah mark watch the kid, big time potential. i see he has a 3rd rd grade currently, but hes moving up fast also they said

hip pivot
here comes all of those
ghey innuendos again

Guessing and speculation and confusion, thanks Armando.

dolfan u serious?? eli basically lost his entire oline, lost his top 2 rbs, lost cruz for few, they were starting hillis and jacobs at rb


You're the WORST kind of fan. You argue this stuff AFTER the fact. I could respect you a lot more if you had argued this stuff five years ago but you didn't (and please don't give me the 'I knew Ryan should have been the pick BS'. You didn't KNOW. That might have been your OPINION but you didn't KNOW. Nobody knew. The Rams also had the opportunity to pick Ryan but passed and instead picked Chris Long. So nobody KNEW....including you.

Baalke....Keim???? Promoted from within after GM's fired

Jake Long was the Best Prospect in the 2008 Draft.

M.Ryan and Flacco Suck!! The problem is both of those teams spent a First Round Pick on a QB! The Falcons are Stuck because they spent a Top 3 pick. You don't give up on those guys even if they are average. And The Ravens are Fukked because Flacco won a Superbowl.

Tannehill will be the QB for the Next Decade. So you better learn to love him. The Best QB since Marino. T-Sizzle!!

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