« GM finalist Ray Farmer may not interview ... or may | Main | Dolphins interviewing Nick Caserio today »

Humiliation: Browns say Farmer not interviewing second time

So let me get this straight ... The assistant general manager for the Cleveland Browns is informed he is a finalist for the general manager job with the Miami Dolphins and after getting through an initial interview that reportedly went well, he declines to take the second interview because he has doubts about the Dolphins' football structure?

Can this really be?

Is the Dolphins' reputation around the NFL so soiled that even people working for the Browns -- the Browns! -- don't want more money, more power, and a chance to run the Dolphins front office?

Somebody wake me, because this is a nightmare.

Let's retrace some footsteps because if this is, in fact, what's going on, we've already stepped in something foul.

Farmer interviewed for the Dolphins job January 11 and I reported the interview was very good. Obviously, it turns out, the interview did go well because a couple of days ago the Dolphins decided Farmer would be one of their finalists interviewing this weekend for a chance to become the successor to Jeff Ireland.

But a not-funny thing happened on the way to that prized finalist interview. Farmer began to have second thoughts. As I reported Thursday, Farmer started to waiver about whether or not he wanted to interview again with the Dolphins because he was feeling uncertain or uncomfortable with the Dolphins football structure.

Farmer talked to the Dolphins for at least five hours in that first interview. He came to that interview with the blessing of former boss Carl Peterson, who hired Farmer during his time with the Chiefs and is now the top advisor to Dolphins owner Stephen Ross on this GM search. And after answering a bunch of questions and presumably asking some of his own, Farmer was still not sure he either understood or liked the Miami structure?

That's not all.

Was Farmer's concern so profound that even when the Fritz Pollard Alliance strongly recommended he take the follow-up interview so he could get his clarification, Farmer still declined?

Well, that's apparently exactly what happened as on Thursday afternoon, Cleveland Browns CEO Joe Banner told a group of huddled reporters that Farmer was staying with the Browns rather than interview again with the Dolphins, according to the Cleveland Plain Dealer.

Quentin Tarrantino at the height of a drug-induced inspiration could not make this stuff up.

So I have questions that frankly make me wonder about both Farmer and the Dolphins.

1. To Farmer, if you were still uncertain or uncomfortable with the Dolphins structure at the end of that initial interview, why didn't you say so then? Did this discomfort or uncertainty suddenly dawn on you or did you find out new things about the Dolphins in the days following the interview?

2. To Farmer, you worked under Peterson for years. Obviously Peterson thinks very highly you. So if you were uncertain or uncomfortable about the Dolphins structure, couldn't you just call Peterson and ask for clarity? Why the big public unveiling of this issue that makes neither the Dolphins nor you look good?

3. To the Dolphins, is the phrase, "Do you have any questions for us? Are you completely comfortable with where we are right now?" foreign? After all, that kind of covers everything. If Farmer felt any degree of discomfort near the end of his interview, that phrase would have definitely opened the door to the airing of that discomfort.

4. To the Dolphins, how could you not know Farmer had issues with your structure?

5. To the Dolphins, did you interview a candidate and then anoint him a finalist without any clue he doesn't think highly of what you are proposing as the job structure?

6. To the Dolphins, aren't you starting to get a clue that something is seriously wrong with, well, you? Look, when one candidate declines to interview, that's understandable. When two candidates decide your interview offer is not for them, that's kind of worrisome but not terribly. But four candidates declined to take even initial interviews with you and a fifth man, who was open minded enough to take the initial interview, decided that familiarity with you was a reason to stay away in the future.

It's not them, my dear Dolphins franchise, it's you!

It's not the media with an agenda. It's not tough luck. It's not the competition conspiring against you. It is you!

Now, for the sake of full disclosure, Dolphins sources insist it is not them. (On a couple of counts, such as the initial and incorrect Jason Licht story about him being offered the job and this evening's CYA suggestion by one national reporter that Lake Dawson didn't become a finalist until after Farmer had second thoughts, it is indeed the media).

The message I get from the Dolphins is that every candidate is made aware he will be reporting directly to owner Stephen Ross. Every candidate is aware he will not be under either coach Joe Philbin or executive vice president of football administration Dawn Aponte. Every candidate is aware he also will definitely not be over Philbin and probably not Aponte as well. Both Aponte and Philbin will answer to Ross.

Aponte, I am told, has no secret sinister plans to take over as undercover GM.

So where is the misunderstanding?

Are the Dolphins not relaying that message clearly? Is there a communication disconnect? Is the team, through sources, saying one thing to me and then another to candidates? I don't know for sure. I'm not in the interviews.

(Maybe the Dolphins should embed me this weekend for their own well being -- like the military embeds war correspondents. It protects them.). 

All I know is this is not the first humiliation the Dolphins suffer lately. It's starting to get really, really old when the Dave Wannstedt disaster is the good old days.

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

y d fuss over a Cleveland browns hack not wanting job ? they traded 4 bess and drafted Richardson just who we need not

In any scenario, if Philbin refuses to play the Players that the GM acquired, no structure will work out.

Posted by: oscar canosa | January 24, 2014 at 06:58 AM

Yes. The drafted players from 2013 were seeming involved with DawnJoe Ireland dispute. I wonder if the rookies got little playing time and the FA's were played out of position as part of the DawnJoe Ireland fallout.

Philbin's loyalty to Sherman tells me all I need to know. His own personal feelings towards colleagues go before what is best for the team, pathetic HC.

What would Philbin gain by refusing to play the players the GM selects

One of the best qualities Of GM candidate Ray Farmer was his people skills and communication skills. Where are those skills when he cannot even use those skills to get clarification on the job he is applying for?

I think the perception of his skills was clearly overblown. I do not want such a person on my team, to tell you the truth.

Ray Farmer is not a confident man. Five hour interview and he is still uncertain about what the job entails?
And he cannot figure it out? People skills, communication skills? really? I think its best he stayed in Cleveland.

Everyone can and will speculate; it's Philbin, it's the Aponte involvement and not being a complete GM or it's T-hill who will not perform like a franchise QB. Moving forward it does not matter the Dolphins and Ross are going to hire who they want in the structure they want. The Dolphins need a big time great evaluator of talent and that's all that matters. Farmer is yesterdays news.Perhaps going with Dawson will bring in some new direction.

Posted by: Dolfan Rick f | January 24, 2014 at 07:05 AM

What would Philbin gain by keeping Sherman ?

Philbin never even looked at using the rookies, even after players were injured and they were worth playing. Jenkins was better in coverage than Wheeler as was Jordan. The rookie DB's when healthy were kept on the bench and free agents of the streets were played.

I would not put it past Philbin to play this out to damage Irelands credibility. Look at the last two games. We lost because of terrible leadership, awful coaching and pathetic play calling on both sides of the ball. Philbin was schooled by a rookie HC and Rex Ryan who is a true leader of men.

What more do you want to see from Philbin that you do not understand ?

I don't know exactly, Rick, perhaps get rid of Ireland as it happened, perhaps he really doesn't like the Players selected by Jeff or perhaps he is going slowly with DJ, the CBs, others. Joe has a history of getting rid of good Players who for some reason he doesn't like.

Excellent post by Austin and El poopster....Man...Austin, I couldn't have said it better myself. Anyone with a half a brain would see that you can't have everyone on equal footing in a structured environment i.e. Philbin/Aponte and GM All reporting to the owner(ROSS). That's like the student/Teacher and Principal ALL reporting to the Superintendent of SCHOOLS. Having alot of money doesn't make one smart..example(ROSS)and EL poopster said it BEST..I'm not even angry anymore. As a lifelong FAN..I'm embarrassed and ashamed of this franchise. These people (ROSS and friends)are ruining a storied franchise and the real victims are the true DOLPHINS fans. Unbelieveable is the word that comes to mind at this point. DOLPHFANS stop supporting this team right NOW until management changes hands.

Seems like the Dolphins organization need to get through the current NFL season and have the bullying report released before they can move on to the 2014-15 season.

Watching this through the media's eye/on the outside is like watching a bad accident in slow motion.

Very disappointing. On the football side, are the QB and wide receivers getting together and running routes? Start early and practice together often. -- Here's a hint for the organization, winning will help your fans angst.

One last thing...Armando..Thanks bro for having the guts to call it like it is...Your blog..no matter what anyone else says is totally accurate. Keep up the good work bro. PEACE!

If you look at the Browns recent draft picks then you wonder why the Fins would be interested in hiring anybody who had anything to do with the Browns.

thanks to mando we get the real news. he isn't afraid to call out the "regime". the fans need to know about the dysfunction behind the scenes.

Man, still can't get over this one...How many guys have turned down the Dolphins? Sad...Where's that idiot from the other day telling me the structure is fine, 1/2 the teams in the NFL have it, bla bla bla bla bla...Yeah, ok dude...LOL!!!

Posted by: Ronnie B | January 24, 2014 at 07:20 AM

Well done Mando for the commitment you have shown over this mess.

Posted by: promichael | January 24, 2014 at 07:12 AM

Sorry, but it does matter. How can you move forward when you don't know which may you are facing ?

Nobody wants this job because they can pretty darn well realize Philbin and Aponte will get the last word for everything...Regardless what Ross says...They can see the BS a mile away...That's what happened with Farmer...

I've been saying since Ireland got fired it will be Gaine...He's already there...Aponte and Philbin know him, they can do what they want with him...Perfect match...Way to go Ross...

Posted by: #1 Dolphin Fan in Montreal | January 24, 2014 at 07:33 AM

Pretty much. With Gaine, we get the Ireland assistant. So if Irelands body of work isn't good enough, then why does Gaine get kudos. Oh, ok I get it he has ties with friends of Philbin society. Nothing to do with talent.

Another thing. Why did Ray Farmer not announce his decision himself? He is the person that applied for the job, why does he have to rely on the Cleveland Browns to announce it for him? Cant he speak for himself?

And why did Armando not ask him exactly what he was uncertain or uncomfortable about the Dolphins structure? It was clear enough to Wooten when he recommended that he take the second interview, so why wasn't it clear enough for him?

To me, its very unclear why everything is so unclear. The Dolphins said that the structure would be that the HC reports directly to Ross, that Aponte reports directly to Ross and the GM reports directly to Ross. The GM would have full authority over the 53 man roster and free agency and no other powers beyond that.
That is very clear to me. So where exactly is the confusion or uncertaintly on the part of candidates? They either like the structure and take the job or not, so what is the real deal ,Armando?

Perhaps a certain writer injecting himself into the middle of the GM selection process was enough to tell Farmer he wanted no part of the media circus in Miami.

Thanks Armando, I'm sure you made a great impression on him. Can you move to Cleveland please! I'm sure they need a sensationalist there to make their lives miserable.

Montreal,


I understand your concern and I am completely shocked. But I rarely agree with Sam I am on the first post of this blog. In a nutshell, if you have concerns and arent man enough to address them or even tell the media yourself? This makes you look like a coward. You turn down such a prestigious job, only 1 of 32 in the world? Perhaps we dodged a bullet. Everyone hated Ireland, but the boy had cojones and that rubbed people the wrong way, but he wasnt scared!

I hope Farmer didnt fall into the media abyss. As we all know, the Dolphins are constantly being crapped on in the media and I think he bought. I guess this guy just needs to stay as strictly a talent evaluator.Other GM's would have run game on this guy.


I guess this can come across as a jaded Dolphin fan. But this whole thing makes me think we dodged a BIG bullet. I think Gaine deserves the job, but I do not feel the fans would go for that and perhaps we should hire Lake Dawson.

Maybe this whole thing will shake off the excess fat, as far as the fan base. Hence allowing the true Dolphans to support their team, without hearing all the BS from the haters.

Montreal,


I understand your concern and I am completely shocked. But I rarely agree with Sam I am on the first post of this blog. In a nutshell, if you have concerns and arent man enough to address them or even tell the media yourself? This makes you look like a coward. You turn down such a prestigious job, only 1 of 32 in the world? Perhaps we dodged a bullet. Everyone hated Ireland, but the boy had cojones and that rubbed people the wrong way, but he wasnt scared!

I hope Farmer didnt fall into the media abyss. As we all know, the Dolphins are constantly being crapped on in the media and I think he bought. I guess this guy just needs to stay as strictly a talent evaluator.Other GM's would have run game on this guy.


I guess this can come across as a jaded Dolphin fan. But this whole thing makes me think we dodged a BIG bullet. I think Gaine deserves the job, but I do not feel the fans would go for that and perhaps we should hire Lake Dawson.

Maybe this whole thing will shake off the excess fat, as far as the fan base. Hence allowing the true Dolphans to support their team, without hearing all the BS from the haters.

Steve69,you can't be serious? Bring back Parcells? Are you freakin nuts? He is one of the reasons we have sucked for so many years. Parcells brought us Ireland, Sporano,he drafted a left tackle instead of a franchise QB,and then drafted Henne. Need I say more?

Oscar,


Simple, Farmer is a coward

Oscar, that's what they say to be politically correct...But these GM candidates aren't stupid, they can read between the lines...That's why they're backing off...Ross is like a politician...Says a lot of things but it's all BS...

Montreal,


I understand your concern and I am completely shocked. But I rarely agree with Sam I am on the first post of this blog. In a nutshell, if you have concerns and arent man enough to address them or even tell the media yourself? This makes you look like a coward. You turn down such a prestigious job, only 1 of 32 in the world? Perhaps we dodged a bullet. Everyone hated Ireland, but the boy had cojones and that rubbed people the wrong way, but he wasnt scared!

I hope Farmer didnt fall into the media abyss. As we all know, the Dolphins are constantly being crapped on in the media and I think he bought. I guess this guy just needs to stay as strictly a talent evaluator.Other GM's would have run game on this guy.


I guess this can come across as a jaded Dolphin fan. But this whole thing makes me think we dodged a BIG bullet. I think Gaine deserves the job, but I do not feel the fans would go for that and perhaps we should hire Lake Dawson.

Maybe this whole thing will shake off the excess fat, as far as the fan base. Hence allowing the true Dolphans to support their team, without hearing all the BS from the haters.

Montreal,


I understand your concern and I am completely shocked. But I rarely agree with Sam I am on the first post of this blog. In a nutshell, if you have concerns and arent man enough to address them or even tell the media yourself? This makes you look like a coward. You turn down such a prestigious job, only 1 of 32 in the world? Perhaps we dodged a bullet. Everyone hated Ireland, but the boy had nutz and that rubbed people the wrong way, but he wasnt scared!

I hope Farmer didnt fall into the media abyss. As we all know, the Dolphins are constantly being crapped on in the media and I think he bought. I guess this guy just needs to stay as strictly a talent evaluator.Other GM's would have run game on this guy.


I guess this can come across as a jaded Dolphin fan. But this whole thing makes me think we dodged a BIG bullet. I think Gaine deserves the job, but I do not feel the fans would go for that and perhaps we should hire Lake Dawson.

Maybe this whole thing will shake off the excess fat, as far as the fan base. Hence allowing the true Dolphans to support their team, without hearing all the BS from the haters.

Like the saying goes. " Every Circus has to have a Clown". All you can expect is "The greatest Fu@%ed up show on earth" when you have Bozo Ross as the ring master.

Another great example of corporate politics crippling a once proud organization. The jockeying for internal power enabled Aponte to report directly to the Owner. I'd love to know how many NFL franchises have a GM reporting to the Owner, the Salary Cap Expert reporting to the Owner and the head coach reporting to the Owner.

Who would want to come into a GM position and not have the Salary Cap Expert reporting to him? This is a recipe for disaster. It's an org structure that will only draw inferior, second or third string talent. I won't be surprised if they give it to Gaine. He has been able to navigate internally without getting fired and he know the riidiculous realities of working for the f--ked up franchise. Then we he gets a real offer in a year or two he will bolt for the door.

It's a joke...and it's a shame.

2 Things.

Humiliation? Really?!

And


Didn't the Seahawks trade a 1st rd pick and gave a $60M Contract to P.Harvin. They should've stayed put in the draft and got C.Patterson.

P.Carroll is a Great Defensive Coach. And has been great at drafting since coming back from college. I would've trusted the draft instead of Free Agency to fix the problem.

And to think P.Garvin is the bigger version of T.Austin.

Rdubs, these guys don't have to say anything to the media. Technically, they're still employed by those teams, so they can basically tell them they're staying put without speaking to the media. The real question is why are so many candidates turning down the Dolphins? You have a chance to be an NFL GM and you pull yourself out of the race? Something is clearly wrong my friend...

Writers like Armando are going to write articles like this after another 'fumble' is made by the franchise. That is his job. I agree he comes off like Oprah many times trying to sensationalize trivial things. But in this case he is write, both sides come across looking badly and the Fins come out looking foolish for sure.

We also have to understand that the NFL is tight circle and Farmer isn't going to come out say directly that he thinks the Fins' structure is a complete mess/joke. He is going to say he doesn't understand it. And most parties in the NFL will view the structure, realize it's FUBAR and give Farmer credit for knowing it, passing on a 'promotion' and he will remain a top candidate for the next GM role somewhere else. Just read between the lines, it's all right there in front of all of us.

Oscar and Marco

I wasn't really defending Philbin's coaching ability just trying to clarify how some folks come to their opinions.

He played Martin and Tannehill right out of the gate last year and Vernon and Miller also saw a lot of action. Evidently something changed between this year and last. Maybe the players didn't show they were ready in practice.

Ross, please sell the team. Please. You dont know anything about football, and just do us a favor and leave your dream behind. You have no balls for this type of work. Stay in real estate. Who would want this job in this structure? When the head coach is actually in on the interview process with the GM? Really? What a joke! Sell the team.

Ross, do us all a big favor and sell the team to Mark Cuban...You evidently don't know anything about Pro Sports...Real Estate is one thing...Pro Sports is another...

Posted by: Dolfan Rick | January 24, 2014 at 08:04 AM

Philbin wanted Garrard out of the gate, Thill go the job due to injury.

Martin was really the only player at RT with any ability, the next man up was Garner.

2. To Farmer, you worked under Peterson for years. Obviously Peterson thinks very highly you. So if you were uncertain or uncomfortable about the Dolphins structure, couldn't you just call Peterson and ask for clarity?
- Mando

So if farmer has questions about the Phins then he should talk to Peterson who is not an employee of the Phins?

HAVE ANY OF THE CANDIDATES SPOKEN TO JEFF IRELAND?

Yes as a matter of fact all of the candidates have spoken to Jeff Ireland.

I could speculate that much of the negativity from candidates comes from the yet-to-be-released Wells report, the contents of which surely are known to many in the NFL hierarchy by now. Sanctions coming the Dolphins way could make many candidates blink.

I think one must also keep in mind the bad publicity for the NFL that the Dolphins franchise has generated over the recent years with J Ireland in the GM seat. NFL owners can't be happy with Ross and his group tarnishing the NFL image with so much scandal year after year. There might be pressure on Ross to get it right or get out. Few candidates would want to involve themselves in what might be a short, very scrutinized tenure.

Also, Ross himself seems to be waffling on the possibility of having a team czar oversee football operations. How many candidates would want to start a job with that possibility hanging over their heads?

There are probably as many reasons why candidates didn't want the Miami job as there are candidates. Personally, I'd give the job to Dawn with some links to internet football publications. She can't do worse than Ireland. At least she wouldn't be hiring the infirmed.

Marco,

I remember now on Garrard. Well hopefully Philbin's eyes are open now on the sense of urgency here. Now that he got his buddy fired. Doubt it though.

Gaine will get the job...How would the Dolphins look giving it to Lake Dawson? I mean first he doesn't become a finalist to get a second interview...But because Farmer says no he's back in the picture again...Man, talk about a confused owner...Where have you gone Joe Robbie??

Philbin was giving another chance and so far he has done his job this off season. He brought in the top OC candidate. Does Ross need to hire Czar like Armando said, It is kinda looking like it.

Traffics sucks in Orlando btw.

Montreal,


Its been reprted that Dawson was a finalist before. Bottom line, we cant believe anything we read at all

JEFF IRELAND PLAYS POKER WITH ALL OF THE CANDIDATES

At the annual meeting, scouting combine and draft; they are his buddies.

Rickm


Traffic always sucks in Orlando. You on I-4? LMAO

Rdubs, I read Xander, Dawson and Khan were out. It was going to be between Farmer, Hickey and Gaine. Now who the heck knows...

IF DAWN APONTE CAN GET THE GM FIRED THEN SHE IS BOSS

Already

Montreal,


Well if Armando admitted he was wrong about Dawson not being a finalist, then I believe him. Who likes to admit they are wrong LOL

UNLIKE THE REST OF US

These football GM types have never had to work with women of authority.

FARMER DID CALL PETERSON

He told Peterson to lose his number.

I also read Licht was going get another interview BUT he preferred going to TB since there was no guarantees he'd get it with Miami...Can't really blame him...

Rdubs,

Yes I-4. Almost out of the worst of it now though. Headed to Savannah for a little vacay.

Savannah is nice. Man that town is expensive. If it is your first time. Avoid the Ghost tours

What the Dolphins need is credibility...Right now in the NFL, nobody is taking them seriously. Hire Tony Dungy as your "czar" and let him hire a GM. If Dungy would be running he show, I can guarantee you the best available people out there would want the job. You wouldn't have any of this nonsense about people turning it down...Dungy is very well respected in NFL circles and would be a great hire for the Dolphins...Assuming he would want the job of course...

Right now the best option is to sign Gaines for 1 year.

Clean house next year if the team sucks.

If the Fins make the Playoffs, you find a gem in Gaines and Philbin is a good coach.

Just give them 2 Rules. No Trading Future Picks and Don't destroy the future cap.

Just in case we Blame this on Jameis, next year.

If you are going to make changes you fire everyone. Coach, Cap Lady and GM. And you do it before the regular season is over. So you have a start over everyone else.

You don't just fire 1 of the 3.

Thanks Rdubs. Been there done that. The wife has family there.

Farmer and other candidates who either declined to interview or withdrew are the losers here. With only 32 of these jobs in the league, good luck waiting and getting a top notch GM opportunity. None of these candidates have proven they are the guy who built an organization. The way you make a name for yourself is go to a franchise that is struggling and turn it around such as SF, Seattle, KC etc. if the candidates don't have enough confidence to come in here and turn around the Fins, who needs them. Our structure isn't any different than a number of other teams in the league. If there are concerns about Philbin. One more mediocre or losing season he is done here and as the GM you will have say in the next hire and possibly even have the coach report to you.

The Dolphins GM hunt reminds me of the movie, "Last Man Standing." lol

BTW good questions Armando, this mess isn't on any externals as much as the Dolphins may want to project it as that. Reminds me of a guy up in D.C. who does the same and both of them are lame but very good at the blame game!

« 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 »

The comments to this entry are closed.