Time To Look Ahead


The tenure of Tony Sparano is extended and his new two year extension makes this year a non-”lame duck” year.  In fact, it’s quite the opposite.  As I wrote earlier in the week, if Stephen Ross had landed Jim Harbaugh he would have needed to spend more money to get the players into Miami that would ignite excitement.  If it was Sparano…he wouldn’t spend a dime.

Now he almost has to.

Stephen Ross and his Miami Dolphins are in a precarious position right now.  They can look at this two year extension as nothing more than something on paper that will only further blacken the eyes of the franchise.  Or, Stephen Ross can get behind this and they can make the necessary changes to give Sparano every opportunity to succeed.

Stephen Ross needs Sparano to succeed.

With all that has happened this week and the lengths the teams management went to keeping Sparano happy or at least employed they can not sit back and simply say there is your product, pointing to the existing team, now make do.  No, they have to fully support him.  And that means spending money.  Possibly lots of it.

Ross wants excitement and explosive entertainment on the field.  He can’t wait for the Bill Parcells plan of reshaping to take place and at the same time, Sparano can’t afford to further sully his situation by not planning for the future as well.  It’s not a one and done season.  Unless Ross is willing to pay 2 years of an empty contract should the team tank.

The best course of action is now diligent thinking and preparation.  The free agent market is set to be full of WR’s that can come in and immediately help this offense.  It has some high profile offensive lineman that can reshape the largest broken unit on the Dolphins team.  While QB is a very soft market this year, there are still veteran options that will give real competition in training camp with Chad Henne and the Dolphins may decide to take that flyer in round one on a signal caller is one falls they like.

At the RB spot, where the Dolphins will assuredly lose at least Ricky Williams, there are FA options as well as rookie options in the draft.  With Sparano’s return it’s almost a given that Patrick Cobbs will now return.

What all this means is this.  Stephen Ross needs a winner and he needs Tony Sparano to be that winner.  Suddenly Sparano is more important than Jeff Ireland.  There was a lot of dirty laundry aired in those meetings I assure you.  The only way to put a winner on the field is to spend money off of it.  In terms of the free agents.  The win now mentality is there but moreso in the eyes of Ross rather than the jobs of Sparano and Ireland.

Whatever side of this fence you stand on, one thing stands out, the off-season should get a whole lot more interesting IF/when free agency rolls around.  I expect the Dolphins to be very active.  Ross needs them to be.

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Tags: Free Agency Jeff Ireland Miami Dolphins NFL Free Agency Stephen Ross Tony Sparano

  • Brandon

    We need to draft a running back forsure!!!!! And at QB there’s plent out there and widereciever we have plenty of those no need to spend to much money there we have some issues but the first thing to do is get our QB if we had a QB last year we wuld be in the playoffs!!!!!!!!!!

    • Mike w

      How about Kevin Kolb from Philly to start at QB and Henne as backup….

  • fins4ever1

    IMO, spending alot of money on FA’s has a low percentage of success. It didn’t work for Shula in his last couple of years and it will not work this year for the jets. Heck, even the Yankees who outspend the competition by tens of millions have limited success. In my view, bringing in big names for big money is simply a sign of desperation.

    True success iS built from the top down with the coaching staff being the most critical; and that is where the team is weak. I don’t care how much Ross spends, until the organization puts a very serious emphasis on a quality QB (high draft pick and a proven person to develop him) and replaces Tony, the Fins success will be very limited.

    Personally, I thought Harbaugh was the perfect choice for the team and Tony should have been fired regardless. To be an experienced OL man and have an OL like they did this year while tolerating poor OC playcalling is worthy of termination.

  • Dolfan1

    I wasn’t sure on Harbaugh to be honest so I’m not all that upset he got away. I thought the perfect choice would have been Brian Billick. He’s hard nosed like Cowher and he’s already worked with Mike Nolan so we know the two of them could easily work together.

    Only problem with Billick is they didn’t even ask him. (SIGH) Guess his name isn’t big enough.

  • Brian Miller

    Little surprised by no mention of Billick either however he was supposed to be this offensive guy who’s offenses really never amounted to much…instead the defenses were the best in the league.

    I don’t know. This whole process leaves a lot to be desired.

    I will disagree about the FA thing. I think if you get solid young guys you do good things. I wouldn’t overspend on the aging veterans as they won’t help you, but guys like Logan Mankins or a Jordan Gross, Steve Breaston, those types of guys…yes they can help you immediately and make your team a whole lot better.

  • Sneller

    I agree with Brian on the whole free agent thing. Breaston would give us a deep threat on the team. I think we Franchise tag Ronnie, so as to be able to use him to trade up in the draft and get the QB of the future we desperatly need. There are some decent RBs coming into free agency from what I have seen. I think we spend the money on DeAngelo Williams and (sigh) Reggie Bush. I know people are going to wonder about the Bush comment there, BUT, he would be playing 2nd to DeAngelo, and he is a versetile player. Both of them have Speed and are breakaway threats on the edge. Something we NEED. As for Mankins, that would be the “Icing on the Cake” because we get a good guard AND hurt a division rival in the process. Just my two cents about it all…

  • davessi

    the combination of FA and draft along with trades that make sense can an have created championship teams. The key to it all is solid execution in contracts and picking the right talent. I believe the Offense definitely has holes like an OL that couldn’t block the sun at night or a QB that looks lost all the time. All that said, I beleive they also need speed….the offense needs speed. You get two guys that can break it to the endzone with one cut or block and that will give our #3 deffense some spirit to be #1.

  • MiamiChris

    As a diehard Dolfan, I just want to say I got Sparano’s back. This guy showed more class through all of this than any one of us would have exhibited. Now, we need a QB. Henne proved to all of us the 2nd half of the season he is not that guy. I’m going out on a limb and saying we should check out Flynn, Hill, or Kolb. At pick 15, I’m not sure what options Miami will have at QB, go with someone that already has experience. We should take the most explosive RB with the 1st pick. Go Fins!