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This Dolphins situation belongs completely to Ross

It's on Stephen Ross. All of it.

He hired this coach. He has hired this general manager. He has hired the Dolphins new President and CEO. All that stuff about inheriting people like Bill Parcells and Tony Sparano is out the window now. For the first time since he's owned the Dolphins, Ross actually owns the team of people that will take the Dolphins to heights or keep them at their current level of mediocrity and NFL irrelevance.

It is all on him.

And Ross is apparently quite comfortable with that because he obviously believes he's got the right people on the job. As I write in my column in The Herald today, Ross had plenty of chances to get rid of Jeff Ireland after 2011 when he jettisoned Sparano.

He didn't.

And at least one candidate for the general manager vacancy asked Ross to remake the team as a condition of being hired over the weekend. And Ross remained oddly loyal to his people, most notably Joe Philbin.

Do I agree with that loyalty?


I think the owner's loyalty must be to the brand and his fans first and foremost and his coach and employees after that. And if someone isn't helping that brand, he or she is hurting that brand. I guess I ascribe to the Genghis Kahn school of NFL ownership.

And having graduated from that school summa cum laude I would now be looking around the room if I were Ross and figuring out who is helping my brand and who is diminishing it. And whoever is diminishing it gets pushed into the shadows.

So let's go through the exercise.

Carl Peterson: He is a longtime Ross advisor and confidant. He led in identifying and pushing of many of these candidates. But I'm looking at him sideways now because while he convinced Ross and others that Ray Farmer and Lake Dawson were quality GM candidates, he didn't seem to have much pull with either man. Farmer, named a finalist, didn't even take a second interview. Dawson, another finalist, took the interview but, as I detail here, didn't take the job. Nice work, Carl! Unless Peterson identified Dennis Hickey and Hickey turns into a stud of a GM, fake owner Salguero isn't feeling all this love for this trusted advisor going forward.

President and CEO Tom Garfinkel: I get the feeling he's going to be wielding a lot more power within the organization going forward, and I'm not thinking it'll be limited to the business side of the organization. Unlike Mike Dee before him who was not included in interviews for coaching candidates and thus couldn't save the process, Garfinkel was intimately involved in the search for the GM. His was apparently a stabilizing voice in the room. Yes, he is a strong Ross advocate. Obviously. But I have a feeling he sees the process was not pristine by any measure. He recognizes need for improvement.

Executive VP of football administration Dawn Aponte: I'm told many of the candidates came into their interviews wary of Aponte. Understandably, I might add. She reportedly had her issues with a GM in Cleveland. She definitely had her issues with GM Jeff Ireland in Miami. But once the candidates got to understanding Aponte's role, she sunk into the background. She was not the reason, at least not the primary reason, either Nick Caserio or Dawson declined the job. Now, fake owner Salguero would not have included her in the interview process at all because, as the Dolphins describe it, she will be answering to the GM on salary cap matters going forward. If that is true, what kind of backward set-up allows a subordinate to interview a potential supervisor? Strange.

Head coach Joe Philbin: He should be feeling pretty good about himself right now. Ross stuck with him. Showed loyalty to him. Is convinced he's the right guy to coach the team. He emerges with the most valuable of endorsements -- one proven by actions. But it should be understood that during interviews when Ross was asked by at least one candidate what he (the candidate) would be able to do after the 2014 season if the Dolphins didn't play well, the answer was not, "Joe Philbin is staying no matter what." The answer was, "We'll handle that situation if and when it arrives." So loyalty from the owner has to continue to be earned.

Assistant GM Brian Gaine: This one has to hurt. Gaine was the only finalist who was not offered the job. I'm told he is considering his options and future, including leaving the organization. Hickey will make a call on trying to keep him or not. Look, would fake owner Salguero have hired Gaine as GM? No. He's been a leader in the personnel regime that was just fired. But does fake owner Salguero try to move heaven and Earth to try to keep Gaine? To make Gaine feel whole? To convince Hickey to keep Gaine? You betcha. Brian Gaine is a quality person. He's a good personnel man. He helps the brand. And that should keep him with the Dolphins if the owner is trying to keep good people.


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I was focused at work most of the afternoon and just got to read the afternoon posts.

This was just FUNNY!!

DC, the heaviest load on the defense is the DC himself- he's a knob from the bengals ... no hope.

We gave him a cadillac and he painted flames on the side and installed spinner rims...

Posted by: Mark in Toronto | January 27, 2014 at 12:48 PM

Ryan Tannehill, the worst QB in football?

Someone dial up Trump or Cuban...they have big arse ego's, hate to loss 2 pennies, and they have a ton of money. C'mon Ross, play golf with Trump and make him an offer he can't refuse. He's redoing Doral, he likes SoFlo, so please sell this team to someone who will hates to lose....or pick another billionaire and sell it. Don't care who-just don't want Ross!

Geno Smith > Tannehill

I don't understand all this back and forth today of who was worse the offense or the defense. The team was 8-8, which is simply mediocre. The team needs to improve on both sides of the ball if they are to make the playoffs consistently. There are several things that need to be done to show steady improvement. Here are my priorities for the entire team:

1) Better protection for THILL on pass plays - better play from OLINE and RB's
2) More consistent blocking to create running room - better play from OLINE
3) Need to get the tough 1-2 yards with out having to pass - see #2 above and better play from FB and RB
4) Better tackling to prevent yards after contact - entire D
5) Better pursuit and run stopping - DLINE and LB's need to be much better
6) Better coverage against TE's and RB's - LB's and Nickel CB - Wheeler!!
7) Better deep ball chemistry/consistency - clearly THILL and Wallace
8) Better Punt and KO return - need someone to scare the competition with real speed

Frank from PA,

To your point, hire someone as head of operations over Hickey , Philbin, the entire organization is what rhe traditional General Manager position entails. Under the structure you proposed Hickey's title would be Director of Pro Personnel overseeing all scouting to include potential FA, college, Canada, local, and regional scouts. This what the proposed candidates prior to Hickey accepting the job were looking for.

With regard to Dawn Aponte, it wouldnt matter if it was Dave or Dan Aponte. It isnt that she is a woman. I have said this before and will continue to do so... The NFL is a tightnot group. Doesnt matter whether Ireland was a bad GM or a good one. What was reported, that Philbin and Aponte were responsible as a unit to oust the GM is what does matter. Dont think for a minute this was not an issue on the minds of all candidates prior to Hickey. Like players GMs talk to each other. Potential GMs talk to each other. This was the issue all along. Throw her into the interview mix, and the outcome was somewhat predictable.

I have posted my position on this issue and have not read many nays.

It all matters not at this time. Ross has every right to set up what ever structure he feels comfortable with. It may be untraditional, traditional, or a hybrid. His team, his call. You mention six teams with similar front office structures which the Fins are trying to emulate. You mention Pittsburgh. Perhaps so, but in Pittsburgh you have an engaged owner who has football history and knowledge, unlike Ross. No knock on Ross, he is a new to this.

So, what other teams other than Pitt is set up like this? Who are their owners and what is their knowledge base? Dallas with Jerry Jones? Ok. That said he just came and said he is the GM and makes all the decisions. I dont think he does so in a vacum, but the final say is his as owner and GM.

Lets discuss.

You can say dysfunctional franchise all you want, but if Miami makes it to the playoffs in 2014 Stephen Ross is the only person you can thank for it. Now on the other hand, if they miss the playoffs again next year I think a total house cleaning will be needed.

hickey only got a 2 year deal which is hilarious

Hollywood...I am hoping the Fins win the SB next year. I am willing to all the crow that can be served up and will do so happily!

Probably one year more than he expected.

Hollywood rick:

It would be fun to ride the subway in Philadelphia with you and see many of the famous historic sites in that city. Also, there are many fine modern skyscrapers of great architectural excellence to be observed.

sucks knowing 2014 is a complete waste of a year. we all saw this exact story couple years ago. now have to go through it again. they clean house after another pointless 6-10 season. lets hope just maybe they can actually find a legit coaching staff for 2015

no matter who the new GM is, it's likely that the next 3 yrs will be rough because our franchise quarterback is mediocre, at best, our running backs are below average, and we have 3 high priced free agent busts locked in for years(Wallace and 2 linebackers who can't make a tackle in the open field).

I just threw up all over an old woman at Denny's.

God, it was awesome. She never knew what hit her!

Kasey wrote the first post on this article, and as usual, the first post is the worst. We have the worst offensive lin in NFL history, but brilliant Kasey wants to re-make the DEFENSE?????

Get to work hickey we need an instinctive middle linebacker, a completely revamped O-line ( save pouncey), a safety and a power running back.

Get to work Lazor we need T-hill to take the next step and learn to throw a deep ball to our speed demon, plus get the playbook in order that fits our strengths.

Coyle, get your finger out of your arse and create a defensive system that plays to our strengths. No way teams should rush on us like they did last year.

Philbin---reads some books on how to motivate and lead.

Ross – stay out of the way.

It's good to be optimistic hollywood Rick. Jpao i agree those are all problems that need to be fixed this is why coyle and philbin will be held responsible for failure if that is the case in 2014.
Once again many say only pouncey can start i disagree i think brenner and garner both have starting potential if they play behind a more cohesive and consistent line.
Seems like the most recent draft has us picking cyrus koandjio.

You sword-swallowers still at it, eh?


Then who will apologize to Ireland?

Free agency will be the key. Hickey will probably draft at least decent but the way they handle our unsigned guys and if we can sign a few others will be key.

If the free agency period goes the way the GM search did we're screwed.

if dallas ever started on any team that team must be horrible

I was injured in a football game, big deal, I had em put it in a cup and I went right back out on the field. I an no Johnny Martin puzz


The traditional title of GM varies from team to team. Did you forget that Eddie Jones was the president of the Dolphins from 1996-2005 yet didn't make one personnel decision. Jimmy Johnson followed by Dave Wandstedt followed Rick Spielman made the personnel moves, not Jones.

I know Pitt has the structure the Dolphins are trying to emulate because I follow them,living up here in PA. Armando or the author of the phinsider article I read said 9 other teams besides the Dolphins have the structure the Dolphins are trying to implement. Other than Pitt, I don't know the other teams off hand.

I don't think Aponte is the distraction you make her out to be. She does her job well and if you think about it, when a GM wants a player, you need the capologist to have to figure out if the team can afford the player. Lots of teams have cap specialists now. MIA interviewed Pitt's capologist Omar Kahn.

The GM candidates that turned down the job wanted to either fire Philbin immediately or have the ability to fire him if the situation doesn't work out. That has nothing to do with Aponte.

hickey only got a 2 year deal which is hilarious

Posted by: dusty bottoms | January 27, 2014 at 06:09 PM
Dusty, that is an embarrassment to both Hickey and the Dolphins. you KNOW you've got your man when said man gets 4 years, minimum. Hickey, truth be known, would've taken a 1 year deal, but both parties knew that would have been MORE embarrasing.
Hollywood-Rick, though I TOTALLY disagree with your uber positive outlook for 2014, I thank you for giving me 30 seconds of joy, a penultimate lift to my sagging spirit.
However, that just made the fall off the joy cliff even more painful.

Sanders, get the big picture before drawing conclusions. Ireland tried to get Aponte fired first. She had two choices, run or fight back. Ireland needed to learn he is not Napolean and she taught it to him.

U guys are talking FA. What makes u think anyone will want to play here unless we overpay like last year. Also unless we franchise grimes he will be sprinting to FA never to be heard from again.

There is not an office or hotel or airline or rock band where people don't form alliances. This is simply human nature. The NFL is no different.

Overall good read. I just had a couple of problems with this paragraph.

"Executive VP of football administration Dawn Aponte: I'm told many of the candidates came into their interviews wary of Aponte. Understandably, I might add. She reportedly had her issues with a GM in Cleveland. She definitely had her issues with GM Jeff Ireland in Miami. But once the candidates got to understanding Aponte's role, she sunk into the background. She was not the reason, at least not the primary reason, either Nick Caserio or Dawson declined the job. Now, fake owner Salguero would not have included her in the interview process at all because, as the Dolphins describe it, she will be answering to the GM on salary cap matters going forward. If that is true, what kind of backward set-up allows a subordinate to interview a potential supervisor? Strange."

#1 She had her issues with Cleveland's GM and with Jeff Ireland? SHE had issues? Or they had issues because she's a very intelligent woman who is known as an up and comer? And possibly the little penis club couldn't handle it? There's a better way to write this imo. Maybe give us a reason, or a clue as to what the "problem" is and who started it.

Secondly, who in the hell said Dawn Aponte was interviewing ANYONE? Hello? Did I miss something because everyone and their grandmother is reporting she SAT IN ON INTERVIEWS. Could they have wanted her there because she is a cap expert and they might need to ask her a question, the gm they are talking to might have a question regarding the salary cap?

Nooooooo that couldn't be it. She must have been sitting in because she was conducting the interview even though Ross and Petersen were in the same freakin room. SMH

Do you remember when and why you became a fins fan?

Do any of those reasons still hold up today?

Have you seen anything to suggest that this team will come together and fight hard next season?

Could you possibly convince anyone to become a fin fan today?

Does it seem likely we will have the same HC and GM going into 2015?

Will the next rebuild be any more successful than the last 5?

Is fandom worth it?

Is blogging the wisest use of your time?

I know when ever a big company hires a CEO they always have the accountant sit in on the interview process, sometimes they even have some college recruits sit in, just in case they need to ask them some questions.

Nahh, more than being a Fan of anything, the reason I post in Blogs is to test the potential of Internet. For example, can a collective group of opinions change the World around Us? Is so, up to what extent? Fascinating.

The potential of the internet is nothing more than Big Brother. Turn us into zombies where they record our every move. Google knows more about you than you do.

All I can say is let the fun begin

The truth will set us free

I believe that on occasions, Big Brother can be swayed.

@One Nad Nathan,
I agree with you, one time when my company was interviewing for a CEO, we had two girl scouts and a janitor sitting in the interview just in case anyone had a question for them

Thanks for the brilliant insight Phins78, your Special. Like my down syndrome brother, he's special too!!!

Oh no, it looks like the EyeTalianos are taking over the blog tonight.

Good night.

1-15 felt better than this. This feels like 1-15 to come.

We don't have to depend only in the Metaphysics anymore to Guide and Teach, as the Collective written opinion will do it from now on. However, We could always go back to the Metaphysics. Yes?

Go back to Metaphysics? There is only Metaphysics.

question mark


Oscar, say hi to your wife for me! Always preferred biology myself to the metaphysics.

L.O.B. !!!!!

My sons are right. You said all smart companies have the c apologist in the CEO interview process. Only a genius like you wouldn't think that sounded odd. You sir (Phins78) are a complete MORON sir

I'm sure the team is extremely psyched up about next season.

Dawn is going to buy Philbin an iPad so he won't need cue cards for victory speeches I think that is awesome.

(slowly, Daytona will drive deeper into that Metaphysical world that he inhabits)

Ireland has a better job than anyone in the Dolphins organization, and he is unemployed.

Slowly I drive deeper into your wife's vagginn, that I inhabit.

She LOVES my bump n run!

I got metaphysics on my ankle and it spread all the way up to my uterus

Instead of building a new stadium, why not just tear down the existing one? This would force the visiting teams to forfeit the games. Then we only will need one win for a winning record, 2 for a playoff berth.

philbin is on thin ice he must make the playoffs in 2014 or hickey will be left standing and he will convince ross to bring in jon gruden or tony dungy in 2015 both men worked in tampa bay with dennis hickey.

Daytona appears to be que-r.

Bloggers obsessed with gay themes:


- C'mon, Daytona, you're a fuc-ing fa- and crazy on top. - No, Father, not all of that!

is bumping peters considered gay?

I knew damn well he wouldn t let any of them fire Philbin , him and all these s has been entertainers he`s sold portions of the team to , to get free halftime entertainment is going to keep this team in mediocrity Philbin has no fire , no excitement he looks like the dog from the Beverly Hill Billies .....Duke on the side line , how do you not get your team fired up after you just beat the Paties, to get into the play-offs against the Bills and Jets, he said flat out too cheap to take to inspirational movies and not into the Rah Rah speaches , he does absolutely nothing on the sideline , why does he keep him and why did our defensive coordinator when games really counted decide to go prevent defense , it was an Olividotti nightmare last 5 games of the season, he should of been fired too , we could of had Caserio if he`d of just turned all decisions over to him , isn t it about time someone thats knows about football runs this team , not hiring guys from teams that sux worse then we do

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