Everyone has an opinion these days on what the Miami Dolphins should do given their current predicament. I have my opinion, you have yours, and it’s likely everyone else does to. Hit message boards and you will find a slew of posted solutions. You will find rumor after rumor after rumor. Coaching candidates who 4 months ago would have been laughed at are now topping fans and media lists. Names like Rex Ryan and Rob Chudzinski.
So what should the Dolphins do? Well, it’s a lot easier to say what they should do as opposed to what they shouldn’t do. Here are some things circulating out there on this Tuesday morning/afternoon that the Dolphins should and should not be doing right now.
Carson Palmer – making the rumor vine this morning is a report from “Bleacher Report” citing Rich Smith of AllSportsIntel VIA his twitter that the NFL received notification from the Dolphins that they are in talks with the Cincinnati Bengals about Carson Palmer.
- Should not be talking to anyone about a QB. Let’s face it is Chad Henne the future of this franchise? Not likely. Is he the reason we are 0-3? Not even close. The problem in Miami is not the QB for a change. In fact, it’s not the offensive at all outside the poor offensive line play. Here in lies the problem with the Miami Dolphins and specifically Jeff Ireland…IF this is true. The Dolphins will spend more money yet again on a position that is NOT a current problem. Take the money and invest in a TE, offensive lineman, or a free safety. If Ireland pulls this move, I will point the finger at Ross for giving the o.k. to do this deal.
Trading Brandon Marshall and/or Cameron Wake – This is not a rumor as much as a group opinion culled from a myriad of forums across the internet. The idea is to trade members of the Dolphins to teams who are in contention and could use key players to make a solid push towards winning their division. Either by lack of talent in those key areas or by deprivation to the team roster due to injury. Lex Hilliard is another name that has surfaced as well.
- Should take a look and see if there is interest. Not saying the Dolphins should make any trades at this time but it never hurts to throw out a few feelers or non-baited line to see if anything will circle the hook. Marshall is a solid WR but he has come nowhere close to the sure handed WR the Dolphins thought they were buying. Cameron Wake is going to be due a monster deal as he finishes out his first NFL contract and thus far he isn’t playing as though big money is on his mind. As for Hilliard, it would be brilliant move to send the running back elsewhere. He is buried on the Dolphins and the emergence of Thomas makes him expendable. There is still depth on the free agent market.
Truth be told, it would save the Dolphins some money now and in the future while possibly securing extra front end draft picks for the team.
Rob Chudzinski, Rob Ryan, and other coaching candidates – Fans have a ton of choices to choose from but the reality is that Sparano is still the head coach and likely will be for some time. Stephen Ross won’t pull the plug on Sparano until the seats at Sun Life Stadium are more empty than what they are now. That hasn’t stopped fans and some in the media to speculate on who will replace him.
- Should not do anything right now. Stephen Ross needs to take a step back and breathe before doing anything as it pertains to his football team. That includes canning Sparano and/or Ireland. Let the season play out and unfold even if the outcome is worse than it currently stands. Then, when the season is over, or close to being over (in terms of weeks not mathematics), Ross should then fire his coach if that is his plan and methodically begin his search for the next HC. He should wait on a decision regarding Ireland until he sees what is available to him.
The team doesn’t know how to win. Well we know that much is obvious given the current record. However, players who come from winning tend to continue being winners. It’s one of those domino type effects. Teams who continually win, do so because they know how. The Miami Dolphins do not know how to win because they haven’t been coached on how to be winners.
Consider the players brought in by Parcells, Ireland, and Sparano. Most are former Cowboy players who have been cast off by Jerry Jones. The irony is that all of these players don’t know how to win either. Taking over the Cowboys in 2003, Parcells led the team to their best record under his coaching. 10-6. He went 6-10 the next year and finished his last two seasons at 9-7. Of those years he made the playoffs twice and lost in the wild card round in both appearances.
The Cowboys went 13-3 the year after Parcells left losing a divisional round playoff game. For Miami, or as it relates to Parcells, the Dolphins relied more on their expertise on the players they were familiar with during the 9-7 years (over .500 but hardly considered winning), as opposed to the subsequent years when the Cowboys performed better. Is it irony that the Cowboys got better after Ireland, Parcells, and Sparano not only left but took a slew of players with them? Probably but it makes for good debate.
- The Dolphins need to learn to win. Coaching is over half the battle. If the coach can’t instill confidence then who will? We all like to say that NFL players don’t need rah rah speeches to get them motivated to play, but in reality, they do. Eliciting excitement in a player while in the locker room gets the blood flowing. Players play better when they are motivated from within. Sparano and company need to find a way to motivate this team outside of the “play to save my job” approach that guys like Karlos Dansby are taking. There is no motivation to play to win simply so that your coach doesn’t get fired. Play to win because you want to win.