All this coaching garbage got you down? Looking at next year and realizing that it’s likely already in the tank? Well, there is some good news through all of this. Depending of course on whether or not Stephen Ross lands his man Jim Harbaugh. See the Dolphins have almost taken every other team out of the equation for Harbaugh, good or bad, he still may decide to take less money and stay in the Bay Area with the 49’ers but that will be his choice.
Ross is out there now and tomorrow he will still be in the area as he and Jeff Ireland will meet with Oakland OC Hugh Jackson. Carl Petersen is reportedly “along for the ride”. Yeah right. Ross’ exclamation that Petersen wouldn’t join the team in some capacity was met with as much realistic probability as Nick Saban’s proclamation that he wasn’t going to Alabama.
But that’s not the good news.
Money is.The Dolphins are closing in on Harbaugh and IF they land him then obviously Tony Sparano will be gone. Ross is set to pay Harbaugh as much and maybe more than what Bill Cowher reportedly wanted. 7-8 million a year. He will become the highest paid HC in the NFL. Do you think that Ross is going to protect that investment? Hell yes he is.
Ross will give everything he has to make Harbaugh workout in Miami and take the team to the next level. That means money in free agency. That means names. Names that will sell seats and score points. It means that at least for now, for the foreseeable future, the Miami Dolphins will be players in the free agency market that very well may look like what the NY Jets built over the last few years.
Ross won’t go out and “buy” a team like Dan Snyder tried to do, they will be a little more intelligent with what they bring in. Why? Because the HC and the GM and the owner, need this to work. They can’t sit around and wait three years for players to develop…oh don’t worry they will try and do that too.
This will be the mix that fans have been clamoring for, for years. Well placed free agents that are impact players and will improve the team immediately. A head coach who isn’t building for the future and isn’t wanting or needing to win now. Simply becoming competitive and filling seats. Ross wants excitement and if there is good news in all of his debacle of late, the Dolphins may just get exciting again.
Ross is prepared to spend the money now as opposed to sitting on it and waiting three years. He has to protect his investment. He has to get a return. Jim Harbaugh is flash and style. In the college ranks. He won’t sell seats like a Bill Cowher would. So his impact to the team is strictly on it. Ross needs to cover that investment. The draft doesn’t provide that opportunity.
Andrew Luck is going to the Panthers if he comes out and declares for the draft. Jerry Richardson has stated he will not trade out of that spot. That means the Dolphins won’t be moving up and selling the farm to get him. They will have other options and if Harbaugh does in fact come to town, they Dolphins will find another QB while Harbaugh will start to work on Henne.
The bad news to all of this? Well, there are always two sides to any coin and that side of this is if Ross fails to land Harbaugh and is forced to stick with Sparano…he isn’t going to spend a dime to save Sparano’s job.