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Dolphins coaches home while rest of AFC East in Mobile

The Dolphins had a former head coach in Mobile, Ala. during the Senior Bowl practices on Tuesday. Nick Saban attended the practices as he often does and did when he was the Dolphins coach.

The Dolphins did not, however, have a current coach in Mobile for practices or the interviews with players that happen afterward. Head coach Joe Philbin stayed in South Florida as did all his coaches.

Philbin was the only AFC East coach not attending.

New England's Bill Belichick, New York Jets coach Rex Ryan and Buffalo coach Doug Marrone were all at the Senior Bowl. Marrone took his entire staff. Ryan gave his assistants the option of attending or taking a vacation week. And Belichick did not have his assistants attend.

Those are the facts.

So is this troubling?

Is it worrisome that the other AFC East teams -- the Patriots and Jets which finished ahead of the Dolphins and the Bills which swept the Dolphins -- have coaches on the ground at these practices and for the meetings and the Dolphins are the only one that does not?

Is it worrisome the Dolphins are the only NFL team that has neither their head coach nor general manager in Mobile -- an outgrowth of the fact the Dolphins have yet to hire their next general manager?

Well, let me be honest: I'm not in a position to know for sure.

I know the optics of it are bad. It looks terrible for the Dolphins. But that's public relations. That's perception.

Whether indeed it actually is bad is another story. I don't know if the three other AFC East head coaches are picking up nuggets on players that Philbin is missing by not being there. We're not talking just information from practice tape, by the way. Everyone can get the practice tapes and review those if they missed the practice.

I'm talking about nuggets from the face-to-face conversations and interviews with the players.

Maybe those offer nothing. And maybe they offer something tangible and worthwhile. We simply do not know.

It is known Philbin has prioritized his time this week and the Senior Bowl is not the priority. I asked the Dolphins why the head coach didn't attend while all his rivals did.

Philbin's answer through a club spokesman is he did not attend the Senior Bowl because he decided his priority this week was meeting with Bill Lazor and getting  the new offensive coordinator acclimated and up to speed with what the Dolphins are going to run offensively in 2014.

(I'm not sure if that means Lazor is telling Philbin what offense he wants to run or Philbin is telling Lazor what offense he wants).

Philbin also said the secondary reason he did not attend the Senior Bowl was because he was finalizing the hiring of new linebacker coach Mark Duffner.

And obviously Philbin has a strong conviction about his approach because Duffner was in Mobile along with all the other Jacksonville Jaguars coaches Monday morning, but once his hiring was solidified Monday afternoon, Duffner returned to Jacksonville Tuesday and will join the rest of the Miami staff in South Florida Wednesday.

"Anytime you can take advantage of all the opportunities you have to evaluate a player, and certainly if you can see them in person that's a help -- you can see and observe their ability to follow directions in drills and practice -- that's all good," Duffner said. "But with the way technology is now with the video all that is filmed. With proper study of the practice, of the individual sessions, the drills and so forth, you get a great evaluation. It's hard not to."

Look, these are hard times to be a Dolphins fan. The Dolphins stunk at the end of the season. They were shown to be dysfunctional internally. The head coach didn't want to fire an assistant that absolutely had to go and was pressured to do so by the owner. Some assistants that probably needed to go as well -- ahem, 58 sacks allowed -- are still on staff. And the GM search is proceeding at a snail's pace as Miami is the only NFL team without a GM.

Amid all that, is Philbin being in South Florida while Rex Ryan, Bill Belichick and Doug Marrone are in Mobile going to determine the course of 2014?

I'd say there are bigger worries.


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Masahiro Tanaka signs with Yanks for $155M over 7 years??? Cripes, the money in baseball is just beyond stupid....


I pray everyday that Stephen Ross sells the team. This is our only hope.

like greg z 1nce said
ne cheat ,no surprise
but when are the dolphins
going 2 cheat?

Posted by: Kris (in Germany) | January 22, 2014 at 11:01 AM

Beginning to seem there will never be a demise of the Pats as long as Bellichik is hc and they are in the AFC East. Even when Brady retires.

Reason why? Jets, Bills, Ross led Dolphins.


I am not gonna argue your points. I just think this is another example of piling on the Phins by the media. I honestly would prefer Philbin to work with his coaches, if thats the case than be at the Senior Bowl. I think Philbin will be at the combine, which is more important in my opinion


And violated

like greg z 1nce said
ne cheat ,no surprise
but when are the dolphins
going 2 cheat?

Posted by: 2 watt | January 22, 2014 at 11:05 AM

We did. Devon Bess to Cleveland. :)

Sam @ 11:05

Ryan Mallett > Tanne

Mark In Toronto,

As a kid (in the 60's) Baseball was my favorite sport. Then Free Agency came and changed everything. Now I never watch baseball. Free Agency is the cancer of ALL sports. Eventually it destroys what made the sport a sport and turns it into a business with the fans as the whipping boys.

Hey Kris, hope you enjoy eating pork or your stay in Germany will be tough ..

This seems to be Philbin's call here. I mean I don't think it's the end of the world but I wonder if this is a further extension on his lack of belief in rookies. We've seen it for the last years now where you only play if you are the hands down best player at your position. he doesn't believe in trials by fire for rooks or letting a guy grow into the job. Behind his choice in d co-ordinator - this is my biggest beef with this guy. As Mando said, he doesn't project. The team that comes out in August is the team we will see in December - barring injury.

Dolphins continue to be a dysfunctional, embarrassing mess!

According to sources, phins made a move to hire Licht after they found out Bucs had interest. If they were interested, why did they wait that long?

What a cluster fvck this org is. Ross has made this team into a laughing stock. Just brutal. Anyone who sees it as anything else but an embarrassment is a delusional homer.

Posted by: ExposingTheFraud | January 22, 2014 at 11:08 AM

Give Bellichik 22 corpses from the morgue and by the end of the year he'll have them winning the AFC East. That's how pathetic the Jets, Bills, and Ross led Dolphins have become.

I can only go by what is reported. It is reported that the Dolphins are the only NFL team that has neither a HC or GM at the Senior Bowl. That would seem to indicate that the Hawks and 9ers have representatives there too.

Where has it been reported that Gaines is at the Senior Bowl?

Albert, football and perhaps hockey are the only sports in the world where there is a level playing field. It doesn't matter how rich your owner is - no financial advantages.

Perhaps a main reason why it's the only sport I really get passionate about anymore.

I get you Mark but I think the third year will be a wasted year. Too many negatives at this point and not enough positives especially if the rumors are true about the coaching staff.

Also this whole replace the GM but keep the coach thing I don't think will work out. It didn't work out when we canned Sparano and kept Ireland.

Now we have this power struggle in the front office with personal agendas ripping the team apart, and a locker room that has lost respect for the coaches and organization and each other.

Does giving Philbin another year sound like a step in the right direction? What can he do to change this trend when it's his leadership and skills that hav brought us to this point?

The argument is he didn't get the players he wanted from Ireland but now there's an opportunity to assess upcoming players and he doesn't take it.

As a kid (in the 60's) Baseball was my favorite sport. Then Free Agency came and changed everything. Now I never watch baseball. Free Agency is the cancer of ALL sports. Eventually it destroys what made the sport a sport and turns it into a business with the fans as the whipping boys.

Posted by: albert | January 22, 2014 at 11:08 AM

Basically you enjoy the old "PLANTATION SYSTEM". Which is ok if you're the "MASTER".

ExposingTheFraud | January 22, 2014 at 11:05 AM

TRUTH @ 11:10

It is even worse than you know. According to Mando the team has more interviews set so if it gets out that the team tried to hire Licht while at the same time scheduling more interviews then that is a disaster.

Didnt I predict it? LOL Not that is wasnt painfully obvious this would happen

Dolphins made a late run at Licht before Bucs hired him
Posted by Darin Gantt on January 22, 2014, 10:50 AM EST
Jason Licht

The Dolphins are proceeding deliberately in their search for a General Manager, but apparently went into hurry up mode for a moment.

According to Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network, the Dolphins “made a late attempt to hire” new Buccaneers G.M. Jason Licht once they found out about Tampa Bay’s interest.

If true, it adds another embarrassing layer to a process which has reportedly turned off a number of prospective candidates.

If Licht was someone they were interested in hiring, it shouldn’t have taken interest from another to spark the process. The fact they haven’t otherwise made a choice with Licht off the table underscores how much of a mess it has been.

The Dolphins didn’t send their coaching staff to Mobile for the Senior Bowl, and they don’t have a General Manager, and don’t seem to be in a hurry to get one hired.

It’s the personnel equivalent of the Browns coaching search, and it’s not a good look for either of them.

Darkoak I also think right now that Philbin can't get out of his own way and he will cost himself the job with his stubborness.

However you never know. I thought Ron Rivera was a dead man walking last year. No fire or emotion - didn't really have a strong presence.

I mean but if you look at things objectively - he is one game under .500 over two years - nto exactly horrible and beat some very good teams. There may be something there -he just needs to bring it out on a more consistent basis.

Well I'm going to say Philbin is in over his head at this point. Not having Sherman as a day to day resource will be telling.



The title makes a STATEMENT and then you get into the article to find that it is based on Ian Rapoport says he was “told” (by who??). It goes on to say “If true”….ok….does anyone check a source? I’ve seen better journalistic reporting from middle schoolers. If it is true – report it and site YOUR sources. If it is not, then quit trying to peddle it as true so you can continue to make the organization look bad. If you have nothing better to do now that Bill Belichick’s boots are no longer available for licking just stick with things you can prove. From all your previous reporting via Miami Herald sources, he wasn’t even high on their list of “top” candidates.

Ross hired Philbin to do a job. He pulled the team out of a real shiet storm after the BS bully scandal to put them in a postion to make a playoff run. No one even considered the Phins when that was going on. The offense totally collapsed the last two weeks and yes, that sucked ballz. Philbin still desrves his 3rd year. Like it or not. And I honestly believe Ireland deserved another year also. Win one of the last two gaomes and none of this conversation takes place. But if a bullfrog had wings he wouldnt but his arse when he landed.

In Philbin we trust!!! We just have to for some continuity purposes.. While other coaches are wasting their time at the Senior Bowl, I trust that Philbin and Lazor are planning a strategy to maximize the skills and attributes of each player on the roster by having Lazor instill some schemes that fits in with the WC offense. Having them together seems more important than visiting unproven students especially this early in the season!!!! finzup!!!!!!

Forget Philbin...he's a fired coach walking. He cant call plays, cannot evaluate talent, has never been a coordinator, hires the most inexperience staff, including a hack for a QB coach, is stubborn, doesnt even pretend to emulate other successful NFL HCs, and by all acounts has aligned himself with Aponte to get the previous GM canned. Not a good optic for any potential GM. He wont go and at least pretend to know what he is doing in Mobile. Oh he is teaching Lazor his offense. It should be pretty short. Joe, " Bill, I like to run an uptempo, west coast type offense." Lazor replies, "ok." Meeting over.

The Fins slow, meticulous search for a GM wont be the person they want, it will be the last one who wants a job.

Farmer or Xanders are my top choices... and I do believe they are both there. Plus the assistant GM, Gaines, IS there. This is a Non story since the next GM is actually already in AL evaluating the players.

1. Disarray at the very top.(Stephen Ross)
2. Neutered GM(Even yet to be named)
3. Players unhappy with coaching received.

Do not know what anyone else calls this, but, I see it as 3 STRIKES and we're out before the 2014 season even begins.

Have I mentioned we till need rebuild 4/5th of the oline, hugely upgrade the rb, ilb, and safety position too?

Today, I shall select one of you to accompany me to Dunedin, Florida to purchase chewing gum.

I shall purchase wintergreen. You may select another flavor in the mint family.

breaking news!
it is ray farmer.
ross just ate a fortune cookie and
it said 2 pix farmer

Posted by: J T SANDER | January 22, 2014 at 11:35 AM

This entire franchise is now a "dead man walking", not only its hc(Philbin). Ross is chief pall bearer.


Thanks...and I don't love pork...unless it's on my pizza (pepperoni).....but I don't hate it either....I had my fair share of Pork snitzchel when I was here from 2000-2005.....wasn't my thing then....and I don't plan on having even one this time around....

I'm good with the sausage tho....and have had a few different kinds for breakfast already.....i'm more into the lamb kebabs @ this point.....

That will change as we get on the road (to see the sights...not work) in the coming weeks.....


You are right, 8 months till the season starts and its over. I may as well not even bother reading about the Dolphins. May as well cancel my Sunday Ticket. I guess I will give all my Dolphins gear to some stinky hobo's. There is no hope, so I should just give up right now and assume the worst.

My team is crap

My life is crap

My family hates me

I have microphallus

Why do I even bother to breathe..whats the point I am gonna die someday anyways...why go on living


I always knew you like the sausage.Sorry bro, you set yourself up for that one LOL


I see what your saying....but are you telling me that Philbin and Lazor can't conduct business over a secure line.....it's 2014 for crying out loud....

potential players should take precedence.....and secure conversations (to include video chat) should be concurrent....not secondary....

2 watt = twatt


I have to agree with Wally here. This is wishy washy at best. If true ... pff. If that isn't a guard against potential libel, I don't knwo what is...

TMZ style reporting.

If it is true .. then Ross would indeed be over his head here and it would be best for him to step away from the business for good. Doesn't need to sell the team but he would need to step away from the decision making process entirely - except for hiring his head of football operations.


I just think that Philbin will review the film after the scouting staffs weeds through it. I believe all decisions Philbin makes, he feels are in his teams best interests. If we agree with him or not. Some coaches like the scouting, some like the coaching, some like both. I dont really have an intelligent answer for you

My team is crap

My life is crap

My family hates me

I have microphallus

Why do I even bother to breathe..whats the point I am gonna die someday anyways...why go on living

Posted by: Rdubs | January 22, 2014 at 11:44 AM

1. Team is crap.... check
2. Your life is crap... Not team related
3. Your family hates you.... Not team related
4. Microphallus? At least Ross selling changes the Fins fortune.

I do not think there's a cure for abnormally small penis.

My team is crap

My life is crap

My family hates me

I have microphallus

Why do I even bother to breathe..whats the point I am gonna die someday anyways...why go on living

Posted by: Rdubs | January 22, 2014 at 11:44 AM

1. Team is crap.... check
2. Your life is crap... Not team related
3. Your family hates you.... Not team related
4. Microphallus? At least Ross selling changes the Fins fortune.

I do not think there's a cure for abnormally small dick.(Microphallus)

This is drawing oversized interest considering the Dolphins don’t have a general manager in place, either. They do have staff there, as assistant general manager Brian Gaine and scouts are in Mobile. Gaine is a candidate for the GM job, too, as are others like Cleveland's Ray Farmer (also at the Senior Bowl).

from Dave Hyde

There is a NFL combine and plenty of tape to watch on these players.

NFL owners dont like Ross!! You know why, because he has more money than all of them!!! they are just jealous, bunch of rich babies!

Alrighty then, this blog made me double post.

I have yet to hear someone properly explain why the enxt Gm will be neutered?

Jason Licht in Tb is neutered
The Patriot Gm is neutered
Schneider in Settle is neutered

Our Gm will not be neutered. Our Gm gets who he wants when he wants. just because he is not the preseident of football operations does not mean he is neutered...

The homers here are hilarious. Like, lets just forget all the facts and make up a scenario where everything doesn't seem that bad and there are apologies across the board for this joke of a franchise. POTENTIAL NEW HIRES HAVE BEEN QUOTED AS SAYING THEY DON'T LIKE THE UNCERTAINTY OF THIS TEAM'S FRONT OFFICE! Numerous un named sources have basically rolled their eyes at the dysfunction of this team. That is not conjecture that is FACT!

Anyone else having problems with the ads on the right side playing when they f5? I just had to kill the sound to make it stop.

Sam...most telling note. The players or some players not really keen on the coaches ability to coach. That to me is sounds volumes. It may be some sour grapes, but given what has transpired, I will infer the story is accurate. There are just too many things going on that dont make sense and goings on and leaves fans and experts scratching their heads.

I would not be surprised if Brian Gaine becomes the next GM for the Dolphins. This will continue the inside cluster F that is happening with Aponte, Failfin and Ross.

Posted by: Mark in Toronto | January 22, 2014 at 11:56 AM

The problem isn't "neutered gm", it's the way Ross has assembled the power structure. Neither of those teams has the "bumbling Stephen Ross" as its owner either.

This alone is an astronomical difference.

You know who funded the 9-11 attack...Ross

You know who knew about it and didnt stop it?..Philbin

You know who introduced Crack in the ghetto?...Ross

You know who has orchestrated all these school shootings?.....Ross

You know who is behind all these cartel murders?....Ross

You know who Justin Biebers dad is?.....Ross

You know Richard Sherman called Crabtree mediocre?.....Ross

Posted by: J T SANDER | January 22, 2014 at 11:57 AM

Exactly why I have so little faith change or increase in personnel changes the prospects of this team by any meaningful iota. Every page turned in the book of this now sad saga, called Miami Dolphins, seems top take on a new disaster all of its own.

Stephen Ross is its infamous author.

Ross seems to replace ne disaster with an even greater disaster than the on before. We didn't get here overnight folks.

when the 1nce hated jets,pats and bills fans
start 2 feel sorry
4 the phinz fans like they do now
there is a huge fkn problem

What does Joe Phibin bring to the Dolphins?


Yes, he is very good at scheduling and adhering to times and deadlines. He is proficient in Excel and email.

He would make an excellent corporate middle manager.

Gaine will be the last one standing and will accept the job. Yes, Ross said the GM will have final say so on all personnel matters. Does anyone really believe that? If you do , I got a bridge I'd like to sell you. What is included in and how "matters" is defined. It could be the GM holloring out from his trailor office parked right outside the fence at the practice facility, "hey Joe, how about player X"? "No" says Joe. The GM says, "well I just signed him." Joe replies, "good luck seeing him on the field.

Stephen Ross, bless his heart, he isn't even intentionally trying to run the team into crap. Guy just isn't football savy at all, so, everything he touches turnstoshit.

I could care less about no having anyone at the senior bowl. I care about someone being in place for free agency. I think it takes about a month to negotiate back and forth with internal guys, finalize a plan regarding external free agents, etc.

Regarding teh draft, heck just using the internet, reading scout breakdowns, and assessing combine and pro day test results in my spare time, I was able to mock a draft for our team that would've netted us Sheldon Richardson, jamie Collins, Terron Armstead, Brian Schwenke, and Da'rick Rogers without making any trades.
The draft is least of the concerns right now.

Free agency on the other hand ... better get someone in there in the next week or two to give them a fighting chance.

I guess it doesn't matter but they are allowing all this second guessing to happen by prolonging the process.

Posted by: Dollfan Rick | January 22, 2014 at 09:42 AM

Dolfan Rick I hear ya. In a way I'm happy they are taking their time though. I don't want an owner who makes decisions based on media and fan pressure. IMO we already had that in Huzienga and it never worked out well for the team.

Sam, this structure is found on 1/3 of NFl teams.

And if a neutered Gm is not the problem why is it on your list?

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