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Seahawks, Dolphins on similar paths until they weren't

Today's Miami Dolphins?

The Seattle Seahawks have been there, folks.

When Stephen Ross took over full control of the Dolphins in 2009, bringing one of the biggest wallets to the fraternity of NFL owners, it was only a coincidence that at league meetings the only other NFL owner with more billions to his name was Seattle owner Paul Allen.

Upon closer inspection that coincidence of resources would be only a foundation of similiarities we'd start to see between the Seahawks and the Dolphins. The very rich owner of the Seahawks, you see, faced similiar situations and initially took similar steps to what Ross has faced recently.

And while there were mistakes made, the Seahawks obviously corrected course.

Which begs the question ... Can the Dolphins correct course?

As recently as 2008, Allen had what he believed was a winning combination at the helm of his franchise. Well-regarded Mike Holmgren was his coach and unquestioned football authority. Holmgren had won a Super Bowl in Green Bay and wanted more power at his next stop. Allen, desperate to breathe life into his franchise, hired Holmgren and gave him all the power he wanted.

Holmgren was basically Seattle's football czar, as all the power on the football side of the organization belonged to him.

And it worked at first. Holmgren even took the Seahawks to the Super Bowl early in 2006. But soon things went south. After the 2008 season in which Seattle finished 4-12, Allen decided he needed to go in a different direction.

So Holmgren was gone. But general manager Tim Ruskell, who had become a favorite of the owner, remained. Fans wondered why Allen was so loyal to Ruskell after a 4-12 season, but the owner appreciated what Ruskell had done earlier in his stint under Holmgren. And, again, the owner liked Ruskell.

And this is the part where I remind you that in October of 2010, Dolphins football czar Bill Parcells left the franchice. He had some success in Miami. The Dolphins won the AFC East and went to the playoffs with an 11-5 record in 2008. You people would often write, "In Parcells we trust," in the comment section here.

But things took a step back in 2009 and 2010 was no better. And yet, after Parcells departed, Ross kept the GM and the coach the former football czar had hired.

Back to the Seahawks, Allen in 2009 went out to hire a head coach to team with his well-liked GM. And he handed the keys to the football team to Jim Mora who the owner believed was a rising talent in coaching circles. Mora was no fledgling coach. He'd been fired after a couple of seasons as the Falcons head coach. But he was young, and bright and well prepared.

So Mora, the new coach, and Ruskell, the previous GM, were teamed together.

The Seahawks made a big free agency splash (sound familiar?) with the signing of Edgerrin James and T.J. Houshmandzadeh. The team picked a pass rusher with the fourth pick of the draft (coincidence again?).

The team was in the playoff hunt for much of the season, but collapsed at season's end -- with four consecutive losses in which the offense failed to perform up to expectations (crazy, right?). Mora claimed progress had been made as the 5-11 record was slightly better than the 4-12 the year before. At one point before the season-finale he actually said, "... We're not that far away."

And that's where owner Paul Allen found himself in pretty much the same position Stephen Ross found himself in after 2012.

With a big-time football czar in his rear-view mirror (Holmgren rather Bill Parcells), with a general manager he admired and kept on from that czar still on staff (Ruskell rather than Jeff Ireland) and with a young, unproven but still promising and respected coach under contract (Mora rather Joe Philbin), Allen had a choice. He could clean house or keep everyone or fire the GM and keep his new coach that had shown he couldn't milk wins out of his team late in the year to make the playoffs. Allen in January 2010 found himself n the same situation Ross would be in January 2013.

(Let me rephrase: Allen got himself into a similar situation as Ross did. These guys made decisions that put them on the road they were on. These billionaires made choices that put themselves in their spots.).

It gets weirder. Allen liked Ruskell but didn't want to give Ruskell a contract extension. So the GM saw that as a show of no confidence on the owner's part. So he resigned.

Well, as you know, Ross liked Ireland but actually wanted to trim back his power for 2014. The GM saw he had lost the owner's confidence and the two mutually agreed to part ways.

So now Allen had no GM but a coach he thought had promise although the record didn't bear that out. Just as Ross had no GM but a coach he thinks has promise, although the record so far does not bear that out.

What happened next?

Allen fired the coach.

After one year.

He went with the option to clean house.

And he went out and hired the hottest coaching prospect he could find in Pete Carroll. And a couple of weeks later general manager John Schneider was hired.

And while it wasn't until this year that Seattle's success reached championship levels, the seeds for that title were sown immidiately. The new management drafted Russell Okung and Earl Thomas and Golden Tate that first year. They traded for Marshawn Lynch. And although they only managed a 7-9 record they also went to the playoffs and won a wild card game.

After a subpar 2011, the Seahawks changed their uniforms and logo in 2012. They drafted their quarterback of the future in 2012.

And there are other coincidences.

But it's impossible to get over the fact that while Allen and Ross's first instincts were similar -- have a big-name guy atop the organization, keep his GM when that big name was gone, hire a young, promising coach to pair with that GM the owner really liked  -- the Seahawks didn't really take off until Allen hit the brakes, turned the steering wheel and pointed the franchise in a totally different direction.

Now look at the Seahawks.

They're where the Dolphins long to be.

The Dolphins, as you know, veered from the Seahawks course this offseason. While Allen made the mistake of not cleaning house the first time a group failed him, he did so the second time. Ross declined to clean house after Parcells left and again in 2011 after he fired Tony Sparano. He kept the same GM both times. And now, he's fired that GM, but kept his coach thus declining to clean house for a third time.

That's where the paths have separated.

We know Seattle followed its course to the Super Bowl. The Dolphins? We'll see.


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The most famous Manning that no-one in the US knows about. This is Archies Daddy.

Marco, let's say Tannehill is the worst QB in history. So what? Why is your life so empty that you are obsessed with putting him down 365 nights a year?

Do you care that much?

If you do, you need to get a life bud.

Well, you couldnt have a Michael Sam on an Incognito team.

Marco, let's say Tannehill is the worst QB in history. So what? Why is your life so empty that you are obsessed with putting him down 365 nights a year?

Do you care that much?

If you do, you need to get a life bud.

Posted by: Weiser | February 10, 2014 at 10:51 PM

Well you are no here as much as me, so whats your point ?

You're not a fair weather fan, you're just one who will not return until the team is winning again.

Like I said, that's fine. It's also the very DEFINITION of a fair weather fan regardless of whether you accept it or not.

Posted by: La Vedad | February 10, 2014 at 11:52 AM

Yeah, who wants to be a bad consumer and buy a crap on the field product. Fair weather fan means a good consumer. Losing isnt fun, period.

Tannehill isnt an NFL QB.

Thill is going to be the main thing that holds us back Philbin is next and its my job to inform you dullards that this is the case. I knoe I shouldn't bother but Im a nice guy so there we go !!! Feckwit co.ck muncher !!!

Marco is a hose wiggler.

Marco smokes Dick.

Tannehill isnt an NFL QB.

Posted by: Proud to be a Fair Weather Fan | February 10, 2014 at 10:58 PM

Thank you. Thill will be a QB or WR coach at Texas in around 3 years time. Not an NFL QB and the more some fans go for him the more pathetic they look.

Marco, ever stop to reflect on what your TanneObsession is about? Is it perhaps disappointment with yourself?

The Miami Dolphins are a professional football team. 1 of only 32. They have fans. At any given point in time, some fans will like the team and it's players, some fans will question the team and it's players, and others will hate the team and it's players.

That will never change, You can hate on any player all you want, it won't change anyone or anything beyond you wasting away your time. When your grandkids ask you what you did with your life, you will say you blogged and hated Tannehill. LOL.

If you don't feel like a silly loser today, you will tomorrow :)

Is that a clarinet I hear outside my apartment window? Oh, it is! It IS a clarinet!

I remember telling Betty this would happen when we were drinking Gimlets in London. "Betty," I said, "one night I'm going to hear a clarinet outside my apartment window." And now it's true! I hear a clarinet outside my apartment window!

Life is grand.

Marco can't have kids. He was born without balls.

I happen to care about this team, you clearly don't give a Shi,t. Amazing that fools like you are proud to back such a feckin loser that can barely throw the ball beyond 15 yards with any accuracy.

His mom named him Marco cause she couldn't find his dad.


Marco, I believe you are trying to transfer your utter disappointment with your own life to the Miami Dolphins. It's not their fault if you have a lame career or a gross wife.

I'm a fin fan. Dang have they sucked for too many years now. But I still like them. Why? Who freakin knows LOL. But they suck for now so whatever. That's all. No need to spend 365 days a year chanting your life miserable.


Thill is clearly a QB that has a large fan base who know Feck all about football. As we all see with the bloggers that love this guy.

Thill fans hate the Miami Dolphins. I'll never stop attacking him or you. You know how you are !!!




If Dion, Davis, Jamar & Dallas are legitimate NFL quality starters then that means that Ireland had a great draft and Philbin refused to play the players for personal reasons.

If that is the case then Philbin deserves to be fired and excoriated.

Posted by: ExposingTheFraud | February 10, 2014 at 11:07 AM
ETF, I believe excoriating first, THEN firing. This way Philbin is guaranteed to absorb the full effect of your scorn.
On another note, Mando's re-emergence resulted in a truly fine, uniquely well thought out and researched posting. Kudos, Mr Salguero.
And yes, SCARY coincidences.

Marco, tell us how much you know about football.

Then tell us how much money an NFL organization has paid you for your opinion. LOL

Look douche bag Thillites don't balme me the Dolphins Fecked the last two games of the season, ~I didn't play QB for the team. Perhaps if I did we would be in the playoffs. Thill is not the answer now and he will not be in 2014.

Im not surprised you are all using feckin stupid names that no-one has ever heard of either because you are ashamed of giving your true ID. I get it feckwits.

Marco likes the word deck. LOL.

Feck it.

I think lame fans like Marco caused the fins to lose their last two games. I mean, so little support from the fans. Look at Seattle, they have the most fan support and they won the SB.

Marco ruined our season.

Marco is mad Tannehill is better at life than him.

Im not surprised you are all using feckin stupid names that no-one has ever heard of

Posted by: Marco | February 10, 2014 at 11:17 PM

Marco doesn't even know how to write no one. LOL. What a feckin idiot.

Marco come back in 10 years after you've read two books LOL.

Marco, tell us how much you know about football.

Then tell us how much money an NFL organization has paid you for your opinion. LOL

Posted by: Weiser | February 10, 2014 at 11:16 PM

What a pathetic statement. How much have they paid you A-hole ? I have the right to call a QB a-wipe out any time. THill is not an NFL QB, sorry to break your tiny heart. ~I guess you only listen to experts and not other fans. If thats the case why thefeck are you on this blog ? Go suckle the ceck of NFL Network and listen to Micheal Gimp Uncle Tom Irwin.

Marco doesn't comprehend what he watches. Must've been all the STDs his mom had when she had him.

Syphilis affects the child's brain development while they are in the womb.

Marco, have you stopped to consider that perhaps your frustration with the Miami Dolphins is nothing more than an extension of your frustration and disappointment with your own life?

I mean, a person who is remotely happy does not spend 365 nights a year blogging about how much they hate something.

Posted by: Weiser | February 10, 2014 at 11:25 PM

Yeah and your love for the mediocrity is a reflection of your pathetic life. Go listen to One Direction.

You see, our team is a huge disappointment. Oh well. What can you do? Well you could be miserable like Marco or you can just say oh well, life is good for me.

Marco didn't go to school. He was to busy attending the family business growing up. Watching his Mom work the Corner for $5 a holler.

I will spend 365 nights a year on here is need be to get the message into your tiny brain that Thill is Shite.

Tannehill sucks along with the rest of the team. Hasnt changed in 6 years.

Marco just came out the closet.

Which self respecting guy listens to One Direction.

Boy did his feathers come out with that one.

Look friends, go watch the game film if you missed the last two games which you clearly have, Thill is Shite !!!

Marco likes to look up when his mouth is full. Reminds me of his mother. She knew the importance of eye contact while working.

Judith "Judy" Angela Jetson is the 16-year-old daughter of George and Jane Jetson who acts just like a normal teenage girl only with more futuristic tastes.

In 1985 she was convicted of the murder of James Goodyear. She was also convicted of multiple counts of grand theft, and is thought to have committed multiple acts of arson.

She was incarcerated in the Florida Department of Corrections Broward Correctional Institution death row for women, before being executed at the Florida State Prison in 1998.

The team stinks. What can you do? Well, you could be sad and miserable like Marco, obsessed with a football player that makes a lot of money and has a beautiful wife and that doesn't even know Marco exists LOL, or...you could enjoy your live and be happy :)

Marco, you said the same thing about Henne. Many argued with you. But in the end you were exactly right and had the last laugh. EVERYONE finally agreed with you.

Don't talk to me about music b!tch. I come from the country that owns the music world. Listen to Tiffany like a good tiny Mall B!tch !!!

Marco only goes out on a date if she has a thicker mustache than Marco.

Wow lots of simple,,, Ryan Tannehill fans bloggin on here again.

Ryan Tannehill makes more money in one year than Marco makes in 10 years. LOL. Marco is jealous and perhaps ashamed he is a nobody. Tannehill stinks good enough to be a starting QB in the NFL. Marco stinks good enough to stink LOL.

Marco seems to have been right in his previous opinions. So he deserves respect for being right pretty often.

Marco was the biggest Backstreet Boys fan, Until he figured out that 'Backstreet' didn't mean what he thought.

Tannehill really sucked the last two games, so did the whole team. Oh well. I like the fins even if they stink. No use in fretting about it like an old washer woman (Marco) LOL.

Ryan Tannehill makes more money in one year than Marco makes in 10 years.

Posted by: Weiser | February 10, 2014 at 11:37 PM

Money is everything?

Posted by: Weiser | February 10, 2014 at 11:39 PM

BS. The QB is meant to be the leader, not a turkey who plays his worst ball of the year in crunch time. Learn the rules fool.

Marco, do you realize Tannehill is 100 times more successful in his job than you are in yours?

It is time for you to face the fact you are envious of Tannehill and ashamed of yourself for not amounting to much.

Marco tell us what you do for a living and are you in the top 32 nation wide?

Uh, guess not. LOL

Marco was also a huge Boys II Men fan growing up in the catholic church. End of the Road got him through some rough times.

Posted by: Weiser | February 10, 2014 at 11:42 PM

WTF has that got to do with Thill and the NFL feck face ? I earn more than you so sit down and relax about that point. I am taller, strong and have a bigger d!ck so behave tiny boy !!!

One thing that is not debatable. Tannehill is much better at his job than Marco is at his own job. Tannehill makes 10 times more than Marco and his wife is 10 times prettier.

So you see, Marco is a pouting little boy upset that he is always going to be a low wage nobody.

Marco selling oranges by the highway isn't a real job.

Posted by: Weiser | February 10, 2014 at 11:41 PM

HA Ha. What a feckin loser. So we should never question the politicans either because they know more than us. Do you ever think mate ? Why always be a tiny sheep, you have a brain, try using it sometimes.

Marco, you and your entire family tree couldn't do my job :)

I write drivers for graphics chips. It will take you a year to even understand what that means. Care to tell us about your feeble job wench?

Marco is extremely insecure. And a huge liar.

Notice he didn't say what he does or how tall he is. Marco does this a lot. He deflects the truth and lives in his own imagination.

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