Dolphins Fans Should Be Thanking Ross For Buying Up Tickets

The Miami Dolphins are not a winning team right now.  The team won’t admit they are rebuilding despite the fact that everything seems to point in that direction.  The team is an underdog at home against a limping Oakland Raiders team who is flying across country on a short week.  The stadium will look like a bowl of orange fruit dotted with empty aqua seats despite the fact that the Dolphins are giving away free 1972 Perfect season hats.

Now, so called “fans” are ridiculing owner Stephen Ross for buying the remaining tickets to lift the blackout so the game can be televised locally.  Notice I said “so-called” fans.

The Dolphins can’t win for losing and nothing they do these days are met with any degree of real understanding.  Brandon Marshall has dropped two TD passes in two weeks and looked lazy and interested on national TV last night.  Damn you Jeff Ireland for getting something more than the back of chips he is actually worth.  The best game he had since leaving Miami was week one versus the last place team in the NFL last year.  Oh, and he was of course being covered by the guy that the Dolphins traded for a 2nd round pick.  Vontae Davis.

Damn you Jeff Ireland.

I don’t give passes for stupidity but I do recognize enough failure in Jeff Ireland to let the naysayers and crystal ball illusionists to have their say.  After all, it’s not like Ireland has done enough to prove them wrong and he may not.  I do however draw a line when it comes to the stupid comments about Ross, especially in regards to buying up his own tickets to allow those who want to see a game, you know, see it.

Tickets are expensive and the economy isn’t exactly exploding with money on trees.  Miami isn’t exactly comprised of upper middle class who can afford to attend every single NFL game.  There is a large population of fans in Miami who have never seen the Dolphins play live.  They can’t afford to and a good portion of them never will.  But on Sunday’s, they get to cheer the team on win or lose because the game is broadcast locally.

Sure, the numbers are down but given the current state of the team and the endless stream of doomsday garbage that some in the local media throw out there, who wouldn’t believe that the team is ready to pack up and move to LA?  The truth is, you believe what you read.  So why not read what is reality instead of what sells papers?

I don’t like losing.  Not one bit.  I am old enough to remember the Super Bowls with my own eyes.  The so called “glory days”.  I do not belong to the generation of fans who have never seen Dan Marino throw a football live or the team make the playoffs because they were so much better than their division rivals.  So you know what?  Like a lot of other fans, I know what that feels like and I know that this really sucks.

I also know that being a fan means supporting the team win or lose.  Supporting the team because they are “my team” and not something that hinges on a win/loss record.  I live in North Carolina so I can’t make the eight home games each year.  If I lived in Miami, you can bet I would.  I do however make one trip down there each year and while my ticket may get comped, my hotel and travel expenses for the weekend do not.  In other words, in the span of that Wednesday to Monday trip for one game, I spend more than it would cost for season tickets if I lived in Miami.

So as I step up on this pedestal for a moment know that I have as much right to call some of the fans out as any of those fans claim to have the right to complain.

My issue is not with fans griping about the team.  Each fan deals with losing in his or her own way just as some fans will read what I write and appreciate the angle I approach the news with as opposed to just dishing the negative spin that others will for the sake of selling papers and web hits.  Believe me, negativity and nitpicking the worst of a situation would make me a hell of a lot of money.  I’d rather tell you the way it really is, good or bad, and let you decide the rest yourself.

Which brings me to my latest rant, those of you out there criticizing Stephen Ross for buying up the remaining tickets to lift the blackout.  He isn’t doing it for your sorry ass!

If you can afford to buy game tickets, pay for parking, buy beer, and choose to sit at home because you think it’s “making a statement” then this is for you.  Do us and Stephen Ross a favor and don’t turn the TV on.  You are a hypocrite.  You are the fan that says “I support my team” but only when they are winning.  You may have the right to decline your season ticket renewals, you have the right to call it a message to the owner that you do not agree with the direction of this team, but you also give up your right to complain about the owner buying those tickets you forfeited if you park your rear-end in front of a television on Sunday’s and watch the game that otherwise would be blacked out if he didn’t.

Send your message.  The empty orange and aqua seats are empty because you are not at the stadium.  Yes, your message is loud and clear and it is your right.  But get off the soapbox and stop complaining because there is a blackout of the games or that it’s lifted because Ross bought up the tickets.  You do not have that right to judge what he does with the tickets you decline.  Understand what I am saying here.  If you can afford to go to the game and don’t to make a statement, fine, you have that right, but you don’t have the right to criticize the owner for making the games available to the rest of Miami and if you are complaining about that, find something else to watch on Sundays.

I don’t stand to tell fans what level of “fandom” they represent.  You go to a game you don’t go to a game.  You complain, you don’t complain.  Whatever, you are a fan and to what degree that means to you should only matter to you.  I don’t however condone or respect those who feel the need to call out every single negative thing in the world and then turn around and claim “I’ve never wavered in my support of the team” when they finally start winning.

I remember how many of those fans reared their heads up out of the abyss when the 2008 Dolphins made the playoffs then sunk back into the muddy waters to complain a year later.  If you want to stay home and watch the games, then you do that.  If you want to complain about blackouts/no-blackouts or the empty seats at the stadium and how much a joke this franchise has become on the national stage just remember you decided to stay home.

It’s funny, the Jets, Bills, Patriots, Browns, Lions, Buc’s, and Cardinals have all had decades of losing seasons upon losing seasons and yet you never see their stadiums empty.  What does that say about the fans of the Miami Dolphins who can actually afford to go to games?  What does it say about those same fans who make fun of the teams owner for spending his own money so that those same fans can have something to complain about while they watch the game at home?

You are the only fan that can determine what kind of fan you really are.  You don’t have to support Stephen Ross or Jeff Ireland, but at least support the “TEAM” you claim to be a fan of.


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Tags: Miami Dolphins Stephen Ross

  • Robert Kelly

    I almost never come out from behind the framework to comment on a topic involving the dolphins recently because I’m unable to summarize my dissatisfaction with SOME of the Miami “fan base” as excellently as you just did Brian. I’m ashamed of these fans more then I actually am of the product on the field at times. I can’t disagree with a single thing you said. Thank you for your insight.

  • Robert Henderson

    Heck. Yes!

  • John Rozich

    Very good points Brian. I am a third year season ticket holder that cannot make all the games because I live far away like you do – only I live in Canada. I make what games I can, and the rest I sell to friends or post on NFL TicketExchange. I am going to three games this year, attended one last year. I never have any problems selling my tickets, most of the buyers are fellow Canadians. Do I agree with Jeff Ireland and some of his moves, no. But I can sit here and listen to local media and fans pour negativity on our local NHL team. We have no NFL in Canada, I am not a Bills fan, dislike the Patriots, and hate the Jets. Maybe that qualifies me as Dolphins fan. Our city had a CFL team that came and left 3 times. One year they drafted a player who was dead. Can’t imagine what the folks in Miami would do or say if Ireland did that. But I am an Dolphins fan win or lose, they may not win too many now, but when I retire 5 years from now I will see all the games. And take in hockey too. Coworkers have bought my tickets and have paraded around with them like they were gold. When you already have a team then maybe people should step back and imagine if there was no team. Does there need to be changes and improvements? Absolutely. All the top teams this year were in doldrums before they became great. I doubt that the Patriots will have another Brady in the wings when he retires unless Bellichik has another rabbit in his hat. I figure Brady will be gone or close to it when I retire, and by then the Phins with Tannehil will lead the AFC East because the Bills are simply the Bills, and the Jets are a soap opera, another prime example that you cannot buy a championship. So yeah I will spend money to travel to a Fins game, and enjoy every minute of it and every last penny. Go Phins…..

  • steven

    blah blah blah!!!!

    • txmedic5

      It’s not blah blah blah. Explain why anyone who says they are a Dolphins fan, CAN afford to go to games, CHOOSES not to to make a point that they don’t like the direction of the team, sits at home and watches the game on television and then COMPLAINS that Ross bought up the tickets so that person can actually watch the game? No one has a right to that. If you don’t like it, don’t turn on your TV.

  • Dolphin Dale

    I agree 100%. If I lived in Miami or closer I would go to every home game. I used to buy season tickets, but stopped. Not because of the team, but because of the way ticket rep treated me. I live in Atlanta and take in 1 home game a year and try to get 1 road game in if they play close. This year road games in Phx and Cincy. I save my money all year to do this. Why? Because I LOVE my Phins. Have since 1970. I lived thru and remember the good days and now living thru the rebuilding/retooling years. I get nothing comped, I pay for everything. I could do other things w/ my money, but the ability to see and cheer on my team in person and be w/ other Phinatics far out weighs the cost. I believe Tannehill is our future. Bought his Nike Jersey Day 1. We will get back to being a respectable franchise and a team other teams fear having to play. We just need to be patient. A few more pieces and we are there. PHINS UP!!!!

  • Jones

    I was born in Miami back in 1982. My family moved to Cincy when I was 5. I was fortunate for four reasons, one Cincy has a football team, two they were terrible so my young impressionable mind never wavered, three until his retirement Marino was the only Miami QB that I ever knew, and four my dad took me and my brothers to every game that the dolphins came up north to. Since I have been 18 I have been making the drive once a year to Miami to catch a home game. Over the last 5-6 years I have been going to many of their road games within 8hrs of Cincy, there are alot of NFL cities within that distance, and now subscribe to the NFL ticket so I never miss a game. I think that living away from your favorite team makes you appreciate having one more than if you live in the same city. Miami fans are not the only ones that jump on and off the bandwagon. Bengals fans are notorious for it. They had multiple games blacked out last year and they went to the playoffs. For Miami fans losing is a new feeling. 10yrs is a long time but only over the last few has it really hit us that it may be another half decade before we return to our annual playoff ways. We are not used to losing. We don’t like it, and for the younger fans it’s all they know which makes it that much easier for them to get frustrated with it and turn their backs on the team. Win or lose I am a dolphin for life. It’s the only NFL team I have ever cheered for and the only one I ever will.

    Also, I have been to multiple Lions games and 95% of the time the stadium is empty up until about 2yrs ago. I was there when Culpepper was QB and the fans that were there were actually doing Redwings chants and booing everytime their offense took the field. Cleveland is always sold out but I think part of the reason is that you can buy tics for like $5 to almost any game. I have never paid more than $30 and have had some pretty nice seats.

  • gerry

    Yea Ross is the man of the hour! Thanks for buying those tickets, and thanks for fielding the worst team in the NFL!

  • Robert S.

    I never leave comments, and it’s due to a simple saying that “opinions are like ***holes, everyone has one, no one needs yours.” So with that said, I want to say that I like the article. I’m a Dolphin fan, living in the Northeast. Seeing a game, hasn’t been a luxury of mine due to family costs, especially with a sickly child. Obviously, my goal is to get down to a game, but I’m not holding my breath.

    In any case, I agree, that I have the opinion that the Dolphins management may have made many mistakes, some of which I’ve had a long list of complaints, and even joked with my Jets friend of buying one of his Jets Jersey’s. However, no matter how disgruntled I may be, I remain loyal, all jokes aside. Negativity, doesn’t help the situation. In this case, though, I commend Stephen Ross for purchasing the tickets, thereby lifting the blackout and allowing the game to be televised for those of us who don’t have the luxury of living near Miami to view the games. I think your article summed it up nicely in regards to Miami fans. Either your a fan, or not. If so, you stick with the team through the ups and downs no matter how aggravating they may be.