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The right Dolphins role for Dan Marino

The Dolphins and Dan Marino have been talking about a job with the organization for more than a year, and yes, the topic has intensified (at least to the public) because CBS fired Marino in February and, as predicted, everyone assumed the proverbial son would return home once his time on national TV had ended.

But despite a face-to-face meeting between Marino and club owner Stephen Ross in April, which The Herald's Barry Jackson first reported, nothing is signed, sealed or delivered yet.

Dan Marino may someday again work for the Dolphins.

... Or he might not.

Why the uncertainty?

Well, I guess to hire someone you have to have a job available to them. And then that person has to want that job.

And Marino and the Dolphins seem to be floating in a netherworld of not quite there on either front.

The Dolphins would love for Marino to rejoin the organization. But it is quite clear they want him as what he naturally seems to be -- a face for the franchise that is recognizable and respected and a reminder of how good things used to be.

(Playoffs almost every season is much better than no playoffs every season).

Such a position does not require a lot of preparation. Such a position does not require a fulltime, breakneck commitment. Such a position is a great fit for Marino.

And I commend the Dolphins, specifically club president and CEO Tom Garfinkel, for seeing that fit.

But ...

Marino doesn't seem to be sold on that fit. He seems to want to be more than a marketing tool that is trotted out at events and then set back in the shadows when real football business is handled. Marino apparently would like some actual power.

The problem is Marino is not currently suited for a role that includes any power. He's not ready to be a coach. He's not ready to be a general manager. He's not ready to be team president. Just as importantly, the Dolphins power bureaucracy is saturated as it is.

And then there is this: No one is certain exactly how much desire Marino has for putting in exceedingly long hours. I'm certain if this 52-year-old man wanted to work hard and long and be away from his family and commit, he would be an amazing success at whatever position he wanted to fill.

But there is no surety about that commitment at this point.

And so Marino is not hired yet.

In truth, if the commitment hurdle could be crossed, Marino could turn into a major asset for Ross if the owner would read the next few paragraphs carefully:

Dan Marino would be perfect as the owner's eyes and ears. Call him the special advisor to the owner.

Remember that Ross is an absentee owner. Like it or not, the Dolphins are one of his business ventures, but not his primary business venture. Like it or not, the Dolphins are more a billion-dollar hobby. Ross lives in New York. He works in real estate. And he dabbles as an owner.

That's simply the truth.

Ross relies on the people he has hired to run the Dolphins. He relies on coach Joe Philbin. He relies on general manager Dennis Hickey. He relies on executive vice president Dawn Aponte. On the business side he relies on Garfinkel. He relies on advisor Matt Higgins.

And none of that is any different as any other NFL owner except that Ross is absentee. He's not around the team on a day-to-day basis. He does not witness firsthand what is happening. He is a commander-in-chief who relies on his generals to report to him.

The problem?

Sometimes generals have an agenda. And that agenda is always keeping their job and staying in good favor. Sometimes the commander-in-chief is simply out of the loop.

That is how a general manager and a head coach can go almost an entire year losing respect for one another and much of a season not speaking and it festers until one of them is gone.

So what I propose is inserting Marino into the gap Ross needs to fill between knowing what is actually happening within his organization and what he's told is happening within his organization.

I would turn Marino loose and have him sit in on meetings, talk to the coaches, hear what they think and are planning. And then once he sees the results of those plans and what actually is happening on the field, report to Ross what actually went right ... and wrong.

I would turn Marino loose over the personnel department and let him ask questions. What's Hickey's vision? What are the issues he's concerned about? How is he addressing them? Who is he trying to sign? Who is he planning on discarding? And then when we see how that vision translates to reality, he could report to Ross what went right ... and wrong.

I would turn Marino loose over the cap and the legal matters Aponte oversees. What is her vision for handling the coming Mike Pouncey extension, especially given the fact Pouncey seems to have some maturity issues? What is her strategy for handling the coming Ryan Tannehill second contract? Why aren't the first three draft picks signed yet? What was her legal advise on the firing of multiple people who are now threatening to sue? And then when we see how that strategy and vision play out, Marino could report to Ross what went right ... and wrong.

I would turn Marino loose in the locker room, where he would already have a ton of respect based on his credentials and history. If the vets are tired late in the season and need to lighten up in practice, he'd know. If the players don't trust the trainer, he'd know. If the players come in drunk or hung over to practice (it has happened on multiple occasions the past four years), he'd know. And then when we see how locker room issues affect the performance of the players on the field, Marino could report to Ross what went right ... and wrong.

(Who knows, he might even be able to head off some problems if they're addressed early enough).

Eyes and ears.

Without any agenda. Without fear of having to say what he feels the owner wants to hear to keep his job. 

That's what Marino could provide. Frankly, someone like Jason Taylor could similarly fill that role.

After I gave a brief outline for this role on my twitter account (you should follow me), some people called the job I propose one as a snitch.

That's a crass way of looking at it. The role is meant to increase the level of accountability throughout the organization -- and boy, has it needed it the past decade. The role is one that reports the good news as well as the bad. The role can help the team when its heading toward a ditch similar to last year's harassment scandal. The role can help fairy tale stories about what is going on get brushed away but what is true and accurate.

The role could help Ross be a better owner.

Would that role require an investment in time from Marino? Of course. That's why it's called work.

But it would not require the Hall of Famer keeping coaches hours. He doesn't have to meet with everyone every day. He doesn't have to sit in every meeting. But game plan meeting? Big draft meetings? The meetings where the grand strategy is crafted? Of course.

Marino could work smart hours rather than long hours. Oh yeah, and instead of traveling to New York every week for a pregame show, he'd travel only when the Dolphins are on the road or only to the Senior Bowl and Indianapolis Combine.

By God, people in the media travel to those events for a fraction of what Marino would make.

But what the person in that role could provide might prove invaluable.


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And then there is this: Thats a mighty long post on subject matter that is really not big news imo.

What would he do otther than be a figure head. Now if he actually wanted to get involved on the sideline maybe. Is old sense of urgency could always be used. He was definitely a gamer when the whistle blew.

Marino? Who cares.

Bob Griese has 2 sb rings and never worked in any capacity with the Dolphins.

Marino had a gifted arm, never being necessarily lauded for a great amount of smarts. He sucked as a tv analyst, even allowing his "counter-parts" to Dolphin-bash relentlessly.

Marino was always the guy at the tv analyst desk missing the testosterone. Why would we need another loser working within what's for well over a decade now, as been a losing organization.

What, are we extending "baby mama" charity to him now?

Oops I meant to say his sense of urgency.

Marino to Dolphins front office is only a pure misguided local media push. Nothing more, nothing less.

Isnt our image bad enough already? AWWW-RIGTHY then, let's add a guy cheating on his wife and having a baby out of wedlock. Brilliant, simply brilliant!

Dolphin Rick,

I don't know how much effect Marino would have with our qb's. You also have consider, "QUICK RELEASE" cannot be taught.

Marino just doesn't strike me as being very smart. He was just a supremely physically gifted qb.

Nobody across the Nation knows about Griese but they do know about Dan Marino though. If he is hired by the Dolphins, it will be strictly in a publicity capacity.

Marino is not a business guy. He was a great quarterback perhaps the best pure passer to play in the game.

I don't think he EVER had a job other than throwing a football.

Jason Taylor is the man the Fins need to fill that role and he is all ready on the team payroll.

Taylor quit his gig at ESPN to be at Ross's side at the end of the season and is working as a coach during the OTAs.

The other guy I would bring aboard is Zach Thomas. Both guys are pure CLASS.

Marino can be used in marketing on a part-time basis.

Posted by: Promichael | June 05, 2014 at 02:19 PM

The only thing that concerns me about this logic is that Matt Moore has beat exactly ZERO teams with a winning record in his career. In a one or two game sub, he may be fine if you are facing sub standard teams. But if your Qb is down for the year, you are better off just tanking because Moore will not do a thing for you of substance.

It is true what Dashi says that many Heat Fans do not think Spoelstra is a good Coach. They think Lebron is the real Coach of the Miami Heat or Pat riley through telepathy. Hmm...

Armando, Dan Rooney (Steelers owner) was appointed U.S. Ambassador to Ireland by president Obama years ago and spends most of his time in Dublin. They've won a Super Bowl during that time.

The whole "absentee owner" thing is much ado about nothing. How have "hands on" owners like Dan Snyder and Jerry Jones been doing lately?

Has absolutely nothing to do with a team's success or failure.


Dan Marino can work in the marketing department, get on the phones and cold call people for season tickets. Put him in a Cubicle and make him work 8-5 with an hour lunch.

Give him a quota on the amount of cold calls a day he needs to make no less than 100.

give him the Dan Marino account executive title.


I would necessarily argue with you about how well of a teacher Dan may or may not be. I was thinking about the lack of intensity on our sideline the last few years from a coaching stand point.

Marino, the coke sniffer being the policeman on players coming in hung over... hmmmm

This guy can't even manage his own life let alone the team. He would be best suited in a overseer role, but giving the GM and coach autonomy. A marketing face, a guy to entertain vets when they come in for free agents.

As some policeman or god figure for the organization? Forget it, most of these players now never saw one meaningful snap from Marino's glory years.

Hey, if you want "intensity" on the sideline then hire back Tony Sparano.

Emotionless statues like Tony Dungy, Belichick and Bill Walsh have won just as much (or more) as animated guys like Vince Lombardi, the Harbaughs, etc.

There ISN'T any formula or "one size fits all" with that stuff.

You win or lose because of the players you have, not because you're sideline is full of maniacs.

You can bet on him, Adam. Only thing that can beat him is the distance, but with the sloppy track and the lead he will probably take, he is 3/5 to win.

Oscar, how long have you been an imbecile?

I'm pretty sure everyone else in the organization would detest having the GM's spy, I mean representative, snooping around and taking notes.

Chains of command exist for a reason.

Thanks long time fan. I couldn't haave made it through another season without your crack observations.

Btw Tony Dungy probably wouldn't have won anything without Peyton Manning and the only emotion I saw from Sparano was fist pumping on field goals.

Why you mad me, curious?

Marino represents:

"Never Being Able To Win The Big One."

This organization needs to disassociate with "LOSING" of any kind. Best capacity Marino can now serve this franchise is by staying as far away from the pubic limelight as possible. That's the:

"The Right Dolphins Role For Dan Marino".

However, he should do very well writing books on "Extra-Marital Affairs And Bastard Children."

And Curious addressed me no more.

Marino knows about one thing....Quarterbacking. That's what he should be involved with.

Assessing RT and coaching him. And letting Ross know if the guy is a total waste of time or not (he is, I'm betting).

Hello, Oscar.

like the ideas Mando, but there is some validity to the notion that the position is (sort of) a snitch, or has elements of a snitch....so yes, thats a crass way to look at it and you're right, it would be meant to increase accountability across the organization (and it could do that)....but the fact that the position is "meant" to do that doesnt necessarily mean it will, and/or doesnt necessarily change the notion that the position does have some elements of a snitch--like it or not--so the question to me is.....does Marino want a position where he has to walk the line of being a snitch?--even if its a good position, has some value, etc?....doubt it.

Marino spent most of his time at the CBS Studios preying on young interns and then he got one of them pregnant!

He is a HORRIBLE MAN and will burn in the lakes of fire for his betrayal of my Father's laws.

...Sam..Read the Kaep contract. It is not so black and white. there are a ton of conditions around it. I wouldn't have known any better either except they broke it down on NFL radio this morning. A real GM that did contacts. Then Florio wrote a piece about it. You can read it if you want. It also breaks down the contract.

MIT...Nope. I know that is what everyone is reading. And if Kaep performs up to the contact he will make that 61 mil...total fair for a guy that has done what he has done. But!!!! if there are any misteps-inuries. That 61 mil is not guaranted. The contract is genius. The Niners wrote so many out clauses into the contract it will make your head spin....The only thin guaranteed is the almost 14 million dollar signing bonus. The rest of the stuff has to be earned. Nfl radio did a great job breaking it down. I bet if you were to tune into Pat Kirwans show(it should be on right now) he will break it down more. But 100 percent positive..The contract is more show then substance. Unless it is earned on the field..totaly fair, and nothing like Flaccos contract.

Beautiful column on Marino. Cause that sure as hell wasn't a blog post.

So Ross is Special?

More than Half the owners are the same as Ross. So "Kraft" is spending everyday at Patriot Park.

Just cause you have an agenda, doesn't mean you have to ignorant to the facts. It makes you sound like one of your trolls, Salguero.

Thanks for pointing that out DD. Seriously. I would be way too lazy to read Kaep's contract.

This meaningless article of Marino's job with the Dolphins is the kind of piece that Armando tries to encourage a blog response and to look like a counsel or statesman for Ross. Its a matter of egos and not of substance. Or maybe there are no news to give us during the offseason break. However, I always find Barry Jackson informative and up to date with his articles and not trying to create artificial response from the blog. I think that Jackson creates more credibility with us with his way of doing things.


The 'Quick-release' was an 18 year jerkoff of the fans.

The Wildcat was BACKDOOR fotball that made every player/employee/fan of the team ashamed of themselves.

Now we have 'motion and multiple formations'.

When can we simply lne up like men and play football without the handholding, french kissing, excuses and fondling?

Jesus @ 3:18

What about Michael Sam?

Ahh, you became more courteous towards me, curious. I have that gift of being very persuasive, at least with the changing of my patients


The untapped genetic potential of Sinharaja flora is enormous. Of the 211 woody trees and lianas within the reserve, 139 (66%) are endemic. The total vegetation density, including trees, shrubs, herbs and seedlings, has been estimated at 240,000 individuals per hectare.

The only role any Dolphins fan and Ross want to see Marino as is "Deep Ball Coordinator". Anything else would be uncivilized.

I would have Marino work as a QB consultant of some sort. I don't think he'd be willing to take on the full time job. Honestly, thats about it.

I don't want or need Ross involved. Just keep cutting the checks.

Posted by: Asogue | June 05, 2014 at 03:27 PM


Well at least Armando and the Herald do supply us this blog to talk football for those few that choose to participate.

I do like Barry Jackson though and at least he doesn't drop the AND THEN THERE IS THIS line every other paragraph as if it's major news when it's really something trivial.

Better to teach than to degrade, pal. But you should know that already.

DD, just went to Spotrac and broke it down. The 9ers have dead money as follows

2014 $14M
2015 $10M
2016 $7M
2017 $5M
2018 $2.5M

So yes, their cap would stay in tact if Kaep bombs out. Pretty much they are hoping he makes it through 2016, after that, their cap is not compromised much at all.

But cap space allocated to that player in the next four years...

2014 $4M
2015 $17M
2016 $19M
2017 $21M
2018 $22M

I have a hard time seeing this guy live up to any of those cap figures after 2014. He hasn't done squat in this league other than not fukk things up.

Anyway, not my problem, and it is a contract that is escapable. I just think the whole thing was premature and if I was a betting man, I'd say 2015 would be the last year of this deal and in 2016, the 9ers would have to carry $7M in dead cap space as a result. It may not mean much by then if the cap keeps going up but it is significant by today's cap dollars.

It is Hereditary for Armando to talk so much chit. He comes from an Island that looks like a Turd.

Being a great player has almost never translated into being a great coach at the pro level.

There is no correlation whatsoever between athletic ability and the ability to effectively teach.

Most great pro coaches were marginal players at best, such as Don Shula...not the stars.

Thinking that Marino would make a good "mentor" or coach simply based on his outstanding playing ability would be like placing a Maserati next to Ford Focus and thinking it could somehow impart extra horsepower into the lesser car simply by being there.

Does not work that way. Never has. Never will.

Have him to play by play?


That is all I am going to say.

What Dashi wrote was very clear. I didn't say he would be good at it. None of us knowif Marino would be good in the front office either.

What I, Dashi said was "The only role any Dolphins fan and Ross want to see Marino as is "Deep Ball Coordinator". Anything else would be uncivilized."

Do I need to clarify that? I don't think so.


Personally I think Kaep is the best player in the NFL. He's not the smartest/fastest/strongest but he makes big plays at big time.

There is one other role that Marino can fill:

Marino can call potential GM's and not get hung up on.

I was not directly responding to you, Dashi. I was making a general observation.

Therefore, your "comprehension" comment has no correlation to my comments at all.


I think your opinion on Kaep is stretching the boundaries on freedom of speech your country enjoys.

I think he is one of the luckiest players in the league to be on the team he is. He made headlines last preseason by wearing a Dolphins cap. If he was our Qb last year, he would've been finished.

No pro bowl O line, RB, TE, or WRs (ex Wallace) here. No defense either.

He is the beneficiary of being in the rigght place at the right time with the right coach.


Marino won't be qualified. :'(

But you get the point of what I said.

"We" want see Marino in a certain role. "We" aren't saying that he will succeed at his job. Just saying "The role I would like to see Marino in.."

I figured with all the Tannehill Trolls saying he needs to work on his long ball ad nauseum on here. WHY NOT BRING IN THE GREATEST DEEP BALL PASSER OF ALL TIME? TO TALK WITH TANNEHILL.

Just Saying.

Oscar Canosa,

¿Qué edad tenías cuando usted fue nombrado mono Reina de Cuba? Se dice que a usted le vomitar desde el balcón del "Palacio de los Monos" cuando se enojó con el pueblo.

He can be a party planner

How about as the sideline reporter for the CBS4 pre-season games, he can interview the Coach and tell us about the weather and stuff.

Kim Bokamper is getting really old and is bad for TV.

Tristin Jones would be perfect in booty shorts and a halter top.



Yeah, I know you were indirectly responding.

Franchise of the Fallen, NeMo, and Dashi, are the only ones who said use Marino as some type of Coach. Which is what you were talking about Buddy.

So pardon me for responding to your generalizations with a direct response. I should have said,

Yes, Marino might not make a great coach, but as a Fan the ONLY ROLE Dashi would like Marino to do is Deep Ball Consultant.


This is why your a sports writer and likely, based on your poor grasp of organiztional principles, never will be the editor. You just don't get it. A role, as you described, will never work. As you said the power positions are filled. You just want to fling more Sh@t against the wall to see what sticks. Dan had his chance to run the team and did not want to make the commitment. So be it. He can be a marketing tool or nothing. We don't need to muck up the organization so no one knows who's in charge.

Posted by: Darryl Dunphy | June 05, 2014 at 03:24 PM

Breakdown, caked downed. Doesn't matter. Guaranteed money means "Unearned", except that money prior to getting a new contract "EARNS" the player the "UNEARNED" money of his new contract.

Break it down however. $60 MILLION GUARANTEED still means $60 MILLION GUARANTEED. Meaning ZERO stipulations.

Yes, Marino might not make a great coach, but as a Fan the ONLY ROLE Dashi would like Marino to do is Deep Ball Consultant.

Posted by: Dashi | June 05, 2014 at 04:14 PM


Many of Marino's deep balls were launched a "split-second" before being sacked. That's both deep ball touch and quick release.

Neither can be taught. You have it or you don't. Just like you can teach reading defenses. But you cannot teach how fast a qb processes the info in his brain before releasing the football. It's very unlikely any of our brains process information at the "EXACT" same speeds.

"except that players performance prior to getting a new contract "EARNS" the player the "UNEARNED" money of his new contract."


On the Heat.

They should still win. Dashi has Heat in 6, maybe 5.

Now if the Heat lose, Sole responsibility should fall on SPOELSTRA. And he should get fired. The Heat as a Team are to talented to fail.

The Marino era is one that many dolfans would sooner than later rather forget. It netted only 1 sb appearance in 17 seasons, which happened to be a blow out loss.

SF 33 The Marinos 16, enuff said!

I would take Fran Tarkenton over Dan Marino. Tarkenton may have lost 4 sb's, but at least he got his team to 4 sb's.

Heck, I would take Jim Kelly over Dan Marino. :)

David Woodley came closer to a sb win than Marino. Led us to as any sb's too. Which is 1. :)

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