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Winning can cure anything including coach-QB rift

LONDON -- So what is at stake today?

For the Dolphins it is obvious this game against the winless Raiders is important because they simply need a win after two disappointing losses in a row. The team needs good news and winning is the only good news that changes things.

But more fundamentally, the Dolphins need a win today so that, to an important degree, the crack we saw last week in the relationship between quarterback Ryan Tannehill and coach Joe Philbin can heal a bit. It is, by the way, not healed, as I report in my column today.

Both men are intent on putting on a good face going forward but I'm told there are hurt feelings and disappointment on both sides. Read the column for a more expansive explanation of the issue.

The point?

The quarterback and the coach are tied at the hip. They have to be united to be successful.

And Philbin and Tannehill have generally been that the past 35 games Tannehill has started. But there's a crack there now. It is not a catastrophic one but it's there. No amount of public relations smoothing or private mea culpas is going to change that.

The only thing that makes it less important?


The Dolphins badly need a win today. Ryan Tannehill badly needs to play well in a win today. Joe Philbin needs a win today.

A loss?

Tannehill delivers a stinker?

This could get ugly, folks, if that happens.