Stephen Ross is a big fan of new head coach Adam Gase. And he's a big fan of starting quarterback Ryan Tannehill.
But in speaking to the media at the NFL annual meeting Tuesday, Ross made it clear he's not a big fan of the coaching Tannehill got the past couple of years and he's definitely not a big fan of Miko Grimes, the wife of former cornerback Brent Grimes.
Ross said he's looking forward to seeing what his quarterback can do as he enters his fifth NFL season and that is increased by the coaching Gase, who is something of a quarterback expert, is likely to impart on his new project quarterback.
"I'm really optimistic about Ryan," Ross said. "I have a great deal of confidence in him. Reading what he has said ... the relationship between the coach and the quarterback is essential. If you look at the track record of Adam and quarterbacks, I don't think you'll find anyone with any better track record and I have every reason to be optimistic.
"I think Ryan is a rare individual who is exceptionally athletic, exceptionally bright and hard working and dedicated. And I think when he gets the right kind of coaching we can expect great things."
Wait, so Ross doesn't think Tannehill has been getting the "right kind of coaching?" Has coaching been a factor in his play?
"I think so," Ross said. "He's had one [head] coach in four years in the league. He played under Mike Sherman in the same system when he came into the league. So I think really, that Adam's experience and track record with quarterbacks and getting confidence back to Ryan that he needs and hasn't had, and with the support of the coaches, we're very optimistic and looking forward."
Hearing Ross talk suggests he was down on former coach Joe Philbin and his staff after sticking with the coach well beyond any time period that was truly defensible. So was last year's 6-10 record a misjudgment of talent or a coaching problem?
"Probably a little bit of both," Ross said. "It's not one thing. Obviously, we made a decision on the coaching, didn't we? That speaks for itself."
The Dolphins cut Grimes the first week of March and I reported the conduct of Miko, Grimes's wife, was a factor in that decision. Ross confirmed that when he was asked if indeed the conduct of Mrs. Grimes was factored in the decision.
"I'm not going to get down to that level," Ross said. "I think everybody knows what she represented and I thought it was best the Dolphins move on from Brent and Miko."