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Dolphins fire back on idea of structure problems

When Stephen Ross outlined the characteristics he wanted in his next general manager, high on the list was he wanted someone who would collaborate with coach Joe Philbin in helping the franchise move toward better days.

The reason the Dolphins general manager today is Dennis Hickey and neither Nick Caserio nor Lake Dawson is because Hickey met that criteria. And both Caserio and Dawson weren't prepared to keep Philbin as Miami's coach thus did not meet the criteria.

A team source is telling me Caserio, who was highly impressive in his interviews on Friday and Saturday, wanted to become the Dolphins general manager and then start by cleaning house throughout the organization. He wanted to hire a new head coach.

Dawson was willing to keep Philbin for a time -- probably the 2014 season -- but eventually wanted the ability to keep or dismiss Philbin after the season was over.

That was the problem both men had with the Dolphins structure.

And it was a problem because both men were told by owner Stephen Ross he is completely committed to Philbin as the Dolphins head coach this year and beyond. 

The Dolphins are pushing back hard on the idea Miami's GM will have to share power on the roster with Philbin. An NFL source told me earlier today Dawson didn't like the idea that Philbin would have some say -- not full say, but some say -- on the 53-man roster.

The issue, the Dolphins say, came up in practically every single interview including finalist interviews. Each candidate was asked what he would do if he and Philbin disagree on a decision over a player or the 53-man roster.

Some candidates said they would go with the player they want anyway. Some candidates said they would try to convince Philbin to join their opinion but would not take the player if no consensus could be reached. Another candidate said he would move on to another player because he figured Philbin would ultimately not play someone he didn't initially like.

But none of those answers were wrong because, the team repeated to me strongly, the general manager has the final say over the draft, free agency, and the 53-man roster.

Dennis Hickey will have final say over the draft, free agency and the 53-man roster.

The general manager can overrule Philbin on those matters.

The general manager reports only to Ross.

"It's up to Dennis," a club source insisted.

The one thing not up to Hickey will be having a say over Philbin's future. On that, only Ross has that say. And clearly right now he's committed to the head coach.


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They shoulda taken Caserio and let him fire people if he wanted. He would have been able to get better coaches anyways. The only person he would have to keep is Bill Lazor

These are the reasons this team can not get out of its own way.

Those guys were smart to hold to their principals.....

The Coach should have DIRECT supervision until/unless he EARNS the title of Coach/GM...like a Belicheat or even a Shanny or the dude that got got fired in Green Bay years ago....

even if it doesn't work out (and it never seems to).....The Coach answers to the GM until he is thought of as good enough to be his own GM.....

Philbin should NOT be considered @ that level yet.....

Who would have thought a 2nd year HC could cause so many problems....

Certainly not me.....I wanted him over Fisher....and here he is pulling the same crap....

wow i wish nick Caserio was are gm i would agree about fireing philbin. That such a shame about that?

Situation is getting clearer. Thanks for the update

Why is Ross so high on Philbin? Stubborness on not wanting to look wrong again?

I have no problem with Ross wanting Philbin to remain in 2014, especially this late in the process after he already chose Ireland as his scapegoat.

But to not give a GM the ability to fire Philbin and hire a replacement AFTER the 2014 if it is deemed necessary is stupid.

I don't care if he has control over the 53-man roster or not. There is no singular person in control of the football operations, which is a major problem.

I don't blame players wanting to jump ship. I don't blame fans if they want to drop their season tickets. This team is sinking FAST and ultimately it is all Ross's fault.

At this point, anything no longer matters. ALL OF OURS PLAYERS have WITNESSED what a farce this gm search has become. I GREATLY EXCPECT we will see the REPERCUSSIONS play out in their lackadaisical play in this coming season.


So much for having a highly regarded coaching staff.

Dear Mr. Salguero

I wish we had promoted from within the company.
Someone Motivated. Someone Intelligent. Someone who loves Football....Someone like Dawn Aponte.

Dawn Aponte to me has the skill set (M.I.L.F.) to take this franchise to new heights.

Mr. Salguero, as a man can you honestly say Dawn Aponte isn't Motivated, Intelligent or Loves Football?

In a male dominated sport/entertainment like the NFL Dawn Aponte like a Cougar has killed (Jeff Ireland) and thrilled (M.I.L.F.)(Steven Ross) to survive.

I'd be one proud Dolphin fan if we had hired Dawn Aponte or any M.I.L.F. or Cougar for that matter as an NFL G.M.


Soiled :)

Let the team fire back. They are firing blanks anyway!!

Unfortunately, once Ross fired only Ireland and Sherman, finding a competent GM to work within the vague structure Ross has with Philbin, Lazor and Aponte was just too much. If Ross had fired Philbin and Aponte or at least reduced her role we would have a much more respected GM. Most likely a more respected head coach. At the very least, and most important , we would have a happy and optimistic fan base.

When the team finishes 2-14 in 2014, Ross will have yet another offseason of BUNGLED HIRING to perform.

This time after being "arm-barred" into FIRING JOE PHILBIN. This isn't over folks!

Let's all calm down.

Aponte has been a cap whiz and will properly retain that power.

Ross wanted to have final say on the HC.

The candidates knew coming in that their job would be limited to finding talent for the roster. Hickey did that job rather well over at Tampa Bay. See the re-rankings of his drafts over the past three years.

We will see whether this decentralized management structure works.

This story is contradictory. Why would Ross offer the job first to Caserio if Caserio wanted to fire Philbin immediately? Makes no sense.

"...told by owner Stephen Ross he is completely committed to Philbin as the Dolphins head coach this year and beyond."

And beyond?

One question that is unanswered is what if Aponte does not give a free agent desired by the GM a good contract offer because Philbin wants someone else?

Because the capologist also reports to the owner along with the coach, this a structure set up to fail. Philbin is a dreadful head coach on many levels - he does not inspire, unable to form a solid game plan, unable to get team ready to play, unable to scheme, unable to teach, unable to hire solid assistants, and unable to make in-game adjustments.

Ross wanting to keep DawnJOE is why no reputable GM wanted the job. So, the Dolphins hire Hickey who was about to be fired in Tampa Bay and whose teams have not won a playoff game in eleven years and have had finished 4-12 or worse three times in recent years.

So, to go along with an awful coach, Ross hired an awful GM.

The Dolphins respond with....PR. What a joke of a team and owner.

The Dolphins will struggle until they are owned by a lesbian or a lesbian-controlled investment group.

As we all know, lesbians are one of the most educated, driven, and financially successful groups in our nation. They are pillars of American greatness, and their leadership and insight is second to none.

Mr. Ross, you have failed in this endeavor. Sell this team to lesbians and take straight girl Aponte with you.

Hickey is in a no win situation. He is just a stooge for Philbin and Ross. Not only that but he was the fifth or sixth pick on the list and got the job by default.

We are so screwed!

Posted by: SoiledBottom | January 26, 2014 at 04:22 PM

She would have been the worst for this position. GM's most important function is to find talent, and she has no knowledge of what that means. She is a numbers person how is she supposed to she if the tackle prospect has a good punch or balance, the CB has the it factor. She cant she has never even thought about that she was buisy in law school.

Good luck trying to RESIGN BRENT GRIMES. It's now FRANCHISE HIM($11M) or bust.

No way he VOLUNTARILY resigns back into this mess. We maybe better off franchising, then trading him. Franchising him only amounts to a "1yr rental" anyways.

Franchising, then trading him, easily gives our best return.

I wonder if the hickey the dulphins got comes with mrsa?

This story is contradictory. Why would Ross offer the job first to Caserio if Caserio wanted to fire Philbin immediately? Makes no sense.

Posted by: Mark | January 26, 2014 at 04:26 PM


SOMEONE here is paying attention.

Armando's "reporting" here is a bit suspect. You are right, it makes no sense at all.

That's why no one wanted the job. It' all in Ross. Let's see how long he accepts empty seats on Sunday's. It's a Shame.

The fact that Ross is committed to Philbin for next year and beyond is beyond astoundishing. The last 2 regular season games told you all you needed to know about Philbin and were a message to change the head coach NOW, i knew Ross was a complete dunce but this is beyond belief even for him.
Ross falls in love with some like Ireland, Philbin, Aponte and will get exactly what he deserves when this team implodes as usual next season, hopefully going 2-14 or 3-13.
So glad i gave up my 4 club seats, so effen glad!

Its obvious Philbin is the son Ross never had. If the Dolphins go 2-14 next yr, Philbin will be given another yr and Hickey will take the fall. Philbin didn't play Dion Jordan, so I can see Hickey and PHilbin having problems with Dawnhojoe tattling to Ross about Hickey and Ross. Hollywood can't write a script like this,,,,Firday Nights? This is Sunday Nights,,,,, If a preseason was meant for Hard Knocks its the one coming.

I am sorry but I do not see what the big problem is. Last year we were 8-8 and one game away from the playoffs. Everyone thought that the Dolphins needed changes. And we have made them.

We needed to replace the GM after 6 years. We did.

We had problems with the offense who only scored 7 pts in the last 2 games. We got a new offensive coordinator.

Now we are mad because a few GM candidates wanted the ability to fire the coach and the owner told them that this was not the structure so they did not come.

So what? We need someone to come in and pick players and get along with the people that are already here, not someone who wants to blow the whole thing over and start again.

Otherwise we will be at this exact point after the 2015 season.

I'm glad Caserio(whateva) is not in. All he is is a gofer give Billacheat film on players coffee etc. Sounds more like the front office's water boy

Can you imagine if we went 3-13 last year south Florida has the worst drama filled media people on the planet ,,,,,,,,,pssss I heart philbin pisses in his pant quite often one source told me ,',,,,,,,,,,,Jesus Christ you guys make things worse than they are

Don't fall into the trap of believing that "committed to Philbin next year and beyond" stuff, guys.

Didn't Ross give the same kind of assurances to Ireland before canning him?

Not a Ross fan at all, but I can guarantee you that Philbin will not be coaching the team in 2015 if they fail to reach the playoffs this season.

Like I said Mr. Ross...before you fired Ireland things could be a lot worse. Well things are worse and it's ALL your fault. Sorry if you don't like the perception you have created. The structure problem is due to having giving too many people too much authority and lack of management. Does someone need to define general manager so that you can understand? You have created this monster. Congratulations.

I say screw everyone GO MIAMI

I would of given Cacerios everything he demanded and more. Wow, Ross has no clue what he just missed out on. What in the world does he see in Philbin? He will have to make that decision at the end of this season, he is just delaying the process.

Amazing. He let a good one get away.

Just when you thought it couldn't get more ridiculous, why such allegiance to Philbin?

If the phins have another losing year philbin is done period

I am sorry but I do not see what the big problem is.

Posted by: Gllmiaspr | January 26, 2014 at 04:32 PM

Helllloooooooooooooooooooo, did you not see game 15 against a terrible Buffalo team or game 16 against a horrible Jets team?

Does Hickey use 3x5 cards to talk to the media?

the problem here ( besides ross) is philbin. i have tried to back joe because i think that a coach should get some time build an attitude and a team. as we re sitting here now, and as I've said before, i don't think jeff ireland has done that bad in building this team. i think the main problem last year was the coaching. sherman was pathetic, enough said. i tried to back joe, but i heard something that he said during the season that really bothered me and that was this " he doesn't like to play rookies" . what? what the fukk does that mean? that s why theres a draft, so you can add talent to help your team! this might be the most stupid thing i have ever heard! so, no matter who dennis hickey drafts, they are not going to play all that much this year because " philbin doesn't like to play rookies? what an idiot. seriously. this guy has to go. we drafted the most dynamic defensive player in the draft and we don't play him? how stupid is that? my god. i like the Hickey hire by the way. all these GMs are doing is trying to get lucky anyways. tampa has definitely brought in some real talent throughout the years. i thought they had a good team last year, they just didn't have a QB.

It's better that the Italian didn't come in. Those people are too dense to be trusted with any job more complex than cleaning a toilet or making lasagna, anyway.

Sparano...Olivadotti...now Aponte. Just say NO to Italians.

Posted by: DragonFly34 | January 26, 2014 at 04:31 PM

A gm would have to do something "BEYOND SIMPLE STUPID" to be fired after only 1 season. A gm gets at least 3yrs, to see how his "draft classes" are panning out.

If Dolphins go 2-14, Ross is "arm-barred" into a Philbin firing, or he simply does nothing at all. Which is highly likely.

I see 2-14 most likely as result of "PLAYER MUTINY". Then another HUGE roster OVERHAUL would be mandatory. Would it work or not, is another beast to deal with all of its own.

There are economic considerations here as well. Philbin has years left on his contract. Why would an incoming GM immediately get the authority to fire him. Seems to me Ross bought this line of questioning up which is fair to the candidates. It's also fair for Ross to say you're not making HC firing decisions today or a year into YOUR contract.

Anybody see my bag of darts?

They wanted to fire PHILBIN cuz they know hes not a coach when the phins suck again this year everyone else will know hes not a coach I just don't understand why ross wants to keep this guy round so bad...good luck miami with that bunch of clowns u got down there coaching , miami ain't never going to be nothing as long as ross owns the team so with th at being said I hope everything goes well from here on out ...

So the job description of Miami Dolphins "General Manager" is solely: "Duties are restricted solely to as a director of player personnel."

Pretty sure you can't trade a franchised player. I vote we resign nobody, trade all our picks for future picks allow our actually talented players take a season off to remain healthy and just let this awful mess implode without hurting our future. We got a first time GM paried with an awful HC and a moron of an owner in charge of finding the missing pieces to a playoff team. If we are going to sign anyone of note this offseason its going to co$t. This is so disappointing.

They should just move the Jacksonville Jaguars to Atlantic City and rename them the Jersey Shore Goombas and let all these Italian halfwits work there.

Bunch of meatball eating knuckle draggers.

oh i didn't know u were a fukking rocket scientist james evens? who the fukk are you aswhole?


Excellent post. Agreed.

And this isn't unlike a lot of organizations.

But most moron phin fans upset NO experience GM wanted full control.

terribel. just terrible.

Can someone please tell me whats so great about Philbin???

Our team will be fine we have 8 months till our next game , the draft is in 100 days ,free agency starts in march so let's chill , enjoy baseball everyone

it's sad the dolphins can't get a new owner. that is
the real problem

Can someone please tell me whats so great about Philbin???

Posted by: Veteran Fan | January 26, 2014 at 04:43 PM

I'll guess...He looks like Larry Coker's twin brother?

Go shave your back, Greg.

When the scandal broke, the Dolphins hit bottom. Since then, they have digging to find a deeper bottom.

As of now, they are still digging.

Curse you FAILBIN!
Everyone in the League know he's unqualified.
Couldn't get the team prepared for Jets Bills. No 4 qfd adjustments. No personality.... & we keep him & losd out on real GMs!
I hate that Wimp Failbin!

I don't think its Mando's reporting that has the hole in it, sounds more like the FO's fire back story... makes it sound less like a flat out rejection by Caserio. Maybe the guy was never serious who knows, but this way they get to sound like they said no too.
Dragonfly convinced me... if there was ever a season for Hardknocks, wow.

Hello Mr. Ross? Prior to this point many thought..this was coming with a half measure. This is your fault along with the other stooge giving you advice (Peterson). You fire the GM and the next GM wants his coach. WOW.

You really weren't prepared for that?? Hello Mr. Ross?

what nationality are you james evens?

ok, that made me laugh @4:45 James Evans.

The Dolphins have succeeded in becoming more of a laughingstock than the Marlins. It starts with the TOP and Ross has no clue. NO ONE but Hickey was OK with the structure. NO ONE. I guess they were ALL wrong.

Non-Italian by the Grace of God, Greg.

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