Heat On Henne Unwarranted


Henne finds himself in an unwarranted media campaign to lose his job

The Miami Dolphins staged and epic meltdown on Monday night and everyone from the media to the coaches to the fans want answers and they all want someone to pin it on.  With Special Teams coach John Bonamego gone the finger pointing takes a quick unwarranted turn to starting QB Chad Henne.

Fans are emailing “why isn’t Chad Pennington starting” to the local media.  Chad Pennington himself is deflecting the questions from the media as to when he will start instead saying the Henne and not Penny is the teams starting QB.  Fans want a change and they want a change now.  If for no other reason than self-gratification that a change for the sake of change was made.

I will make this very clear.  Chad Henne is not responsible for the loss against New England and should not be pulled from his starting job in favor of anyone.  Including Chad Pennington.

Yes, the facts are very simple.  Henne tossed two first half picks that shut down drives and in both cases were clearly a result of him not looking over the field and seeing a LB, the same LB, in position to make a play.  Both of those picks led to six New England points.  Good teams overcome bad mistakes and the Miami Dolphins defense did just that on Monday night.  In the first half.

The pick six that was recorded against Henne in the second half was hardly his fault.  The failure of Brandon Marshall to continue his route caused that pick.  The problem in the 2nd half was hardly a Miami offensive issue considering that in a span of just three minutes the Dolphins watched a one point half-time lead evaporate into a 20 to 7 deficit thanks to the play of the special teams.

The Dolphins have bigger issues than Chad Henne’s two first half picks or the three other passes that could have been picked.  Their lack of a consistent running game is the reason teams no longer stack the box and the “nothing surprising” offensive play calling by Dan Henning isn’t helping the team either.

Fans are dejected and upset right now.  One site took to a four letter word article that ranted against the team, it’s owners, and it’s coaches.  Fans want a winner, they want an attitude and an identity and right now they have none of those things.  What they do have is a young QB who will make mistakes and play not to lose as long as he is coached not to lose instead of being coached to go out and win.

Fingers can be pointed in any direction the fans want, but Chad Henne has not lost his right to be the starter of this team and in fact, this entire conversation of him losing his job isn’t warranted.  Until the coaches allow Henne to play Chad Henne football and not Chad Pennington football, this offense is going to suffer.  So point your fingers at them instead.

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Tags: Chad Henne Chad Pennington Miami Dolphins

  • http://www.engine9.com Dave

    Henne = Fiedler face the facts. One minute he looks like the next franchise QB and then when your hopes are up – throws 3 picks and brings you back to reality… Fiedler used to do the same thing, but when it mattered (like last Monday night)Henne pulled a Fiedler.

    • Louis Rose

      true

    • PennDolfan

      No, not true. Henne is no Fiedler. Henne is a natural “down the field” kind of quarterback. The Dolphin’s coaching staff are fighting that tendency instead of encouraging it. Remember that 50 yard bomb Henne threw to Ted Ginn last year against the Jets?

  • Jason

    Henne is a third year quarterback that looks surprisingly like a third year quarterback. To compare him to Fiedler is insane. When the special teams gives up 21 points in a 41 to 14 loss that means if you take the 21 points away it’s a 21 to 14 game. Obviously not the fault of Chad Henne although 13 of those 21 points are a direct result of picks the Dolphins should have been able to make up the difference. They gave the Patriots more possessions in the game than they should have had because of lack of efficiency, bad play calling, special teams mistakes. The running game needs to pick it up or Miami’s season is over.

    • Louis Rose

      Henne is not making the best decisions on the field. Also he stares down his recievers and let the defense know where he is going to throw. The coaches are not calling plays to win, they are calling plays not to lose. With that the coaches know Henne is not where he should be right now. With Pennington or Thigpen in they can go full throttle.

      • Jason

        Really with Pennington they can go full throttle? For how long? Five games before he separates his shoulder again? And Tyler has demonstrated better decision making by playing less than a quarter and a half and throwing two picks himself? So if we take away Pennington because of his lack of arm strength and his likelyhood of injury. And take Tyler away because he’s not even where Henne is what’s your next suggestion?

      • Jeirmie Rothwell

        Does anyone realize Henne has only started 17 games, cut the kid some slack. He is still technically entering his second season playing wise. Everyone did this same exact thing to Matt Ryan last season in Atlanta. It takes time to become a great QB and he needs a playbook to fit his playing style.He plays using Penningtons playbook made for a QB that can only throw 15 yards.Give him 1 more season before you call him a bust atleast.As for Thigpen lovers out there, if you want to see a QB not look comfortable and lock on to recievers just look at his KC film or the Pitt game in week 17 last year. Henne will be a great NFL QB give him time.

  • Ripp

    Thank you for this blog! I have been leaving comments saying why benching Henne is overreacting. It would indicate a desperation and panic. I am like any fan who wants this team win but to pull Henne would just set this team back another five years. This was his worse game of his career. The thing that the 1st game of the season, Sanchez threw four picks with under a hundred yards passing, yet the jets fans still supported him. Dose that say something about our football knowledge as fans? I mean you got one bonehead comparing him to Fiedler. Did Henne miss open WRs? Yes. Did Henne lock onto WRs? Yes. That is his two main down falls and very correctible. If he fixes the issue with locking onto a WR he will see the open man, so that in it self is really one issue he has to fix.

    The other thing about Sparano’s teams is that they have a history of getting better as the season progress.

    • Louis Rose

      When you have backup QBs that are better than the starter and not use them, that’s being bone headed.

      • Jason

        The only quarterback that may be better is Pennington and his overall skill set is not better. Henne has more arm strength and less likelyhood he’s going to kill himself if he has to run out of the pocket (wish he would do it more instead of throw the ball away) Tyler Thigpen is not as good as Henne regardless of what you want to believe. Watch the last game over again and tell me how Tyler is better? I would really like to know.

    • Bob

      They also have a history of losing after by week

  • Maroun

    Ripp, Well said. A big trend i’ve seen happen in the nfl is coaches and owner who panic and pull the QB the minute he has a horrible game and start the other QB who would also have a bad game and it would go back and forth e.g Arizona. As a fan I must admit I did say I wanted to bench Henne at first but that was out of pure frustration, it’s not his fault and I have faith in him, if anything I’m worried about is our play calling.

    • Louis Rose

      Play calling is horrible, but a decent QB can overcome that by hitting OPEN receivers instead of locking on to one receiver all game.

  • Christian

    Unwarranted? I don’t think so bud. Get this clown Chad Henne out of Miami. He is one of the most premature QBs I have seen. Miles behind Ryan and Flacco. And even behind Freeman and Sanchez. If Miami is smart they will put Pennington in (a winning QB) and groom Thigpen.

    • Louis Rose

      I totally agree. If they can run off Jason Taylor, what do they owe Henne.

      • NYPhinPhan

        so louis rose… you follow every positive henne comment with a negative one. there isn’t anything really constructive in your posts. you’re just stirring the pot. the reality is that henne isn’t the problem… & our backups aren’t the answers. now go ahead with your negative comment. i can’t wait.

    • Jeirmie Rothwell

      Did you watch Flacco in week 3 5 INTS in one game……….i think those miles are actually inches.

  • Ripp

    The favorite player on every team is the back up QB. Thigpen, while he can make plays every now and then is an INT machine. If you compare Henne’s numbers to Flacco’s or Ryan’s you will also see similar their numbers are not much different. I will also make this clear, Henne did not lose the last two games, it was special teams and the defense. You could have had Pennington playing and Miami still would have lost. While Henne might stair down receivers, which is something that can be fixed Pennington is very limited on the passes he can throw, which is why against good defense he always has struggled. CBs would know all they would have to do is cover the routes that Pennington can throw and let their DL do the rest. Why do you guys think we got shellacked by the Ravens in 2008, not once but twice? I will also say this, I don’t care who is at QB. Miami will not make the playoffs if they don’t get their special teams, run defense, and shore up the middle of the OL which is the reason they can’t run the ball.

    • Alejandro

      Thigpen ISN’T a INT MACHINE in fact is better in that area (like in most ones) than Henne. Thigpen as starter in KC 18 TD for 12 INT, Henne last season 12 TD for 14 INT so… who is the INT MACHINE???
      I would go Thigpen everyday over Henne no single doubt. The INT that had VS Pats wasn’t even his fault it was all in Hartline. Did you watched the full game?

      • Jason

        Every interception that Henne throws is all his fault but if Thigpen throws an interception blame the receiver? Henne has had plenty of receptions be the fault of the receiver. Last year Ginn was responsible for 3 interceptions by himself. But in the end all interceptions are credited to the quarterback. In less time than Henne Thigpen managed to almost throw the same amount of interceptions and he’s supposed to be the solution?

  • bond, david bond

    Sparano may go against practical wisdom and stay with henne but it is only going to cost him his job before or at the end of THIS season. WHY? Because this is the year of proving on the teams 3 year investments. So, the next game that henne throws two or three interceptions or shows an inability to move the team into the endzone regularly, you can be sure that sparano will pull him and hopefully give thigpen a shot at the helm. If thigpen starts to force balls again, sparano should call timeout and then he should be called to the sideline and let one of defensive linemen slap the #@#@ out of him and then immediately send him back onto the field. You know, If pennington could throw deep passes, he would be just as good, if better than tom brady. I am not lobbying for pennington because the defense already know that they can stack the line when he is in the game at quarterback.

    • Jason

      Really Henne threw the game? How exactly? He gave up 13 points on a 41 to 14 loss. So if we take the points he gave up and compare them to the 21 points the special teams gave up who is more to blame? If we were down 21 to 14 in the fourth quarter the play calling would have been different and you idiots would have kept quiet a long time ago. There is no one better on the bench.

  • Dolphinman

    yea the special teams contributed to 21 pts for the patriots and henne contributed 17pts, which is a total of
    38pts by far it isn’t all his fault but he damn sure gets
    some of the blame, especially if he has been in the offense
    3yrs.

  • Nate

    Ok Chad Henne has thrown just as many TD’s as Flacco and Ryan and thrown fewer INT’s then Flacco. He is in the top 10 in yards in the league as well. Henne is a fine QB, lets look at our D and special teams first. Also we have completely forgot we have two great backs. We need to run run run and learn how to tackle and we will be fine. 2-2 is not bad and yes we have a tough schedule but baltimore almost lost to cleveland, green bay lost to chicago who got embaressd by NY and pittsburg will be playing us with Big Ben who hasnt even practiced with his team yet. We will be ok, if you doubt us this early then your not a true FINS fan.

  • Dallas Dolphin

    The thing is, as Dolphin Fans, we are used to changing our QB every time something goes wrong. Does that warrant a fan finger pointing at Chad? No. Does that warrant the comparison to Jay? No. However, it is human nature to do what you are accustomed to do, and this team has created a culture of “lets change QBs every time something goes wrong, then the fans won’t really focus on the real problems.”

  • Jeff in Tennessee

    When you have an Offensive Coordinator who wants to score 3 points and not run the score up or you have an Offensive Coordinator that wants to play Conservative and Not to Lose, then maybe Henning or whoever Miami’s Offensive Coordinator is, needs to go play golf somewhere or count his millions and let someone who wants to win Coach this Team!!!! I totally agree with Brian here.

  • Jay

    So every single person on here backing Henne can Sit here and tell me he is a better QB then Pennington? I dont think so. So what if Penny cant throw the ball farther then Henne. How often do we bomb the ball down the field anyways? Not many and Chad Pennington is a proven qb who had the NFL record for completion precentage because he is smart. Hennes damn helmet is so tight smashing on his forehead that he cant think correctly and when he runs to avoid the pressure it almost looks as if his shoe laces are tied togeather cause of his poor footwork. He never gets rid of the ball he just gets sacked and dosent even realize it is coming. Penny played one season here and took a 1-15 team to 11-5 and put us in the playoffs. Henne has done nothing to prove he can get us even remotely close to the playoffs. I mean down the strectch last year we were given way to many chances to get a playoff birth. But Mr. allstar Chad henne couldnt get us a win for shit to get us there so instead a .500 Foootball team the New York Sticken Jets with there rookie Qb got in instead and took them to the AFC Championship a place we will never get to with this clown running the show.

    • NYPhinPhan

      let’s look at that for a moment… last time Pennington started for the Phins… he got us off to an 0-3 start… with everyone on the roster healthy. is that really better?

    • fishHEAD

      Drew Brees, Romo, Rivers, C Palmer, and Matt Schaub should be benched too then. They all looked terrible on Sunday. They all had costly mistakes that caused their teams games. Brees called 2 timeouts with-in 2 plays. If Henne did it we would all talk smack. Let the man grow and learn!!!!!!!

  • Ripp

    While Pennington deservers credit for the 2008 season, what respectable defense did he get a win against in that year? The Pats? Well that is the game that Miami released the wildcat. While Pennington was part of the reason Miami had won, he was not THE reason they won. To make another point, Miami turned to the wildcat because the offense was stagnate. As one analyst said Pennington is smart and accurate but he can’t throw outside of the numbers. That makes life for opposing CBs so much easier. With the caliber of teams we are going up against the next four games, I’d take my chances on Henne with out a second thought. At least Henne’s problems can be fixed and the only way he fails to make it as a starter is not to improve on his weakness. With Pennington, there is no fix.

  • Ripp

    O yeah and if you look at the stats again, you would see that even though they have played nearly the same amount of games Henne has a lot more pass attempts, a lot better completion percentage and a lower percentage of his passes that are picked. Meaning each time he drops back he is less likely to get picked then Thigpen is.

    Doesn’t make you wonder why one of the two best GMs in the league decided to bring in his own guy and then dealt him away even though the QB he had brought in has not been overly impressive????

  • http://spatialmatch.copm yoyofins

    I like Henne but he is not ready. I sat through two horrible defeats at home and something needs to change. Look how the fins barely beat the hapless Bills. It is time to change QBs. I watched Thigpen through pre-season and Monday night at the end of the game and he has that “it” factor for leading a team. He looks before he throws, he scrambles. I think there is too much pressure on Henne to be the next Marino and he feels it. Those INT were’ devastating, so was the one against the Jets. Thigpen won’t have that pressure. MAKE A CHANGE or another dull season.

    • Jason

      Really? Henne played into the third quarter and threw 3 interceptions. Thigpen played a quarter and a half and threw 2 interceptions and you’re going to say he has that “it” factor? What “it” factor the factor of I don’t have the arm or the accuracy of Henne but I can run with the ball? And a change has been made they fired the special teams coordinator. The losses to the Jets and the Patriots are a result in both cases of special teams mistakes. Kicking it out of bounds, blocked punts, letting people run it back for a touchdown. And in none of those cases was Chad Henne on the field.

  • Jimbo

    yoyofins, I think you have it right on the head. I see Thigpen as having exactly what Henne is missing. And Jason, I saw one of those that Thigpen threw, it was in and out of the receiver’s hands. Had nothing to do with Thigpen, was all on the receiver. Not so with Henne, they are poaching his passes, because he fixates on a receiver like John Beck use to do.

    • Jason

      Thigpen 33 percent of his passes, Henne 64 percent of his passes. Thigpen has thrown 33 percent of his passes as interceptions, Henne less than 10. But I do think that we should put Thigpen and Pennington out there. Cause when we lose 3 consecutive games, Pennington is out for the season cause he separated his shoulder again and Thigpen sucks worse than Henne I wonder what you guys will cry for next.

      • Jimbo

        I don’t cry, I evaluate, and my evaluation is, Henne = Beck. They are cut from the same mold, great arm, poor football skills/decision making. They both lack the ability to make the correct decision in the very short time allotted, and instead fixate on receivers. This results in the defense poaching passes. Only difference I see, Beck was a bit more accurate IMO. If Henne can’t cut it out, and learn to find the open man, of which there have been plenty, our season is over. I think the Phins should have taken Sanchez over Henne. I think Sanchez will endure, and Henne will be off the team by the start of the 2012 season.

  • Jason

    Henne is nothing like Beck. First Beck was quite a bit older than Henne and had little time to develop into a quarterback. Second Henne has a much better arm. I don’t believe the problem is with Henne I think it’s with the play calling. He’s a risk/reward quarterback so you need to give him some deep shots and Miami hasn’t been taking many and I’ve been watching there havn’t been many calls for it. Last season against the Jets Miami beat them with special teams and the deep ball. If you take those away even with a better defense Miami doesn’t score. Do you think we waste more draft picks on a quarterback or go after the real needs of the teem. I think Henne will develop nicely

  • Jimbo

    I hope you are right and I am wrong. I think Henne has been chcking off, and not throwing the deep ball even though he has the reveiver open. Yes, the play callig has been the worst I ever remember seeing week to week, but I don’t see Henne as being able to bring the team up to the next level. I like the way Thigpen reads and moves much better. True, his stats are not as good, but he also hasn’t had much chance behind a good team, and I think we have one and it’s a good thing I’m not in charge because I would have given the team to Thigpen this year, not Henne.

    • Jason

      Henne has been checking down and the reason is because he’s afraid to throw across the middle when none of his receivers get great separation. Name one of the Miami starting receivers that can get quick separation? Brandon Marshall is a physical receiver and his separation is based on whether he gets jammed. If he does he pushes back and gets a good yard of separation. Marshall is not fast as we’ve seen early. Brian Hartline has not demonstrated the hands he had last season and he’s not getting separation either. So Henne wants to check down as much as possible to avoid the turnovers. Great theory but Henne isn’t checking off the defender very well. He will get a hang of it with some film and training from Pennington but right now we need a deep threat although I don’t see any available for the Dolphins.

  • fishHEAD

    Henne is still young. I dont think Flacco or Matt Ryan is that much better. In all honesty…….there are only about 9 QBs that are handsdown better than Henne and have the arm he has. This is his FIRST FULL SEASON STARTING!!!!!

    Watching games this weekend provided me the opportunity to see that other QBs make BIG mistakes too….Romo, Schaub, Rivers, and Brees all made HUGE errors that cost their teams victories. Errors that all seem worse than Hennes.

    • Jimbo

      So other QB’s make mistakes that’s your point? Other QB’s look like sh$$ so it’s OK for Henne to look bad? LOL… NO Jason, don’t agree. Your blaiming the receivers, and that’s not what I’m seeing. What I see is Henne unable to spot the open man, and when he does, he is not able to get them the ball. So, he’s throwing the short ball a lot, and the other teams know it and are waiting on him, more than our receivers are! There poaching, and this is never a good spot for a Qback to be in.

      • Jason

        So point out to me the receiver that’s been getting wide open down the field. The one that’s stretching the field and keeping the safety’s back instead of stepping up. And there have been open receivers that Henne has missed. There have been open receivers that Peyton Manning has missed, and Matt Schaub has missed, and Brett Favre, etc., etc. the list goes on and on. Maybe the whole NFL should bench their quarterbacks and put out the back-ups cause almost every quarterback int he league has been missing the open receivers and making mistakes. And most of them have speedy receivers to match their physical receivers. Thigpen becomes the quarterback and I guarantee you right now there will be 6 INT’s and 2TD’s in 3 games and 3 consecutive losses. When that happens you will what scream for him to be removed too? What’s next? Thats what I want to know most right now what’s next when Thigpen fails?

  • Jimbo

    Marshall was WIDE open up the middle about 20 yards from the goal line when Henne checked off and threw into 3 Pats. This happens a lot with him. Marshall has not gone from one of the best, to one of the worst because he put on a Phins uniform. More likely, Henne just can’t see him to get him the ball. Same with the other receivers, they looke like they are doing very well to me.

    I don’t worry about what other QBacks are doing, only what we are talking about, Henne.

    • Jay

      Its not about other QB’s making mistakes in a game. Its about OUR QB making mistakes consistantly in GAMES. Not one game multiple games.

      • Jason

        And yet still no one has answered my question. If Henne is benched in favor of Thigpen and he goes out there and loses three games in a row with sub-par performances what’s your next move? You can’t take your future quarterback the person you drafted to be the face of the team and bench him in his second season starting because of a 2-2 start. Not unless you have a valid proven alternative.

  • Jimbo

    I didn’t answer the question because I don’t like the premis. Why think worst? I wouldn’t think of putting in someone I didn’t think could do the job, and I think Thigpen can do it. But just for clarity, if he stunk up the field, I’d put in Pennington. I was never a Henne fan from the get go. I’d rather have seen the Phins take Vince young, or Colt, or Tebow, or Drew, or Sanchez, or… I hope I’m wrong and I will be the first to say, “you’all were right,” if he ever starts to look good, but from where I sit I haven’t seen the improvement that some here seem to say is taking place. He stinks in the 4th quarter, where Marino shined, and where games are won and lost.

    • Jason

      Henne has 4 fourth quarter or overtime comebacks in 17 starts and he’s horrible in the fourth quarter. I mean 25 percent of his games and almost half of his wins are in the fourth quarter. And if you think that Pennington is going to be better especially when everyone can play within 10 yards against him and stack the box than you are living in some sort of fantasy land. Thigpen had 2 interceptions in just over a quarter of play against the Patriots and yet he’s SO much better than Henne. Even the analysts are saying that Henne is doing really good for a third year quarterback with less than two seasons of starts. Ryan and Flaco have been starting for 2.5 seasons and are playing about the same as Henne and yet you “Fans” are critical of your starting quarterback with absolutely no alternatives. If we had a vetran back-up that could spread the field and give us a chance to run the ball on occasion I’d jump all over it if nothing more than to teach Henne that he needs to perform to keep his job. But we don’t have anything else so give it a rest!!

  • Bob

    Henne isn’t the problem Henning is “Wildcat” same plays for 3 years now no trickery plays they don’t mix it up
    I am a Penn State fan also (Everybody knows what too expect)Joepa hasn’t changed and neither has Henning!!!
    Jets and Pats game was totally embarrassing!!!!
    All I hope for is they turn this around and go into their home fields and return the #@#@^%* . We have the players to win but the coaching plays I dont think so.

    • Bob

      Feed THe WOLf (BULL—-)HA where is the wolf still sleeping in the den