Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Dolphins’ Sherman Leads End Of Season Collapse


 

What a disgusting and heartbreaking end to yet another mediocre season of Miami Dolphins football.  After climbing to the peak of their season with a huge home win against the New England Patriots, the Dolphins were sitting in a position that other teams could only dream about.  All they needed was win out against the less than stellar Buffalo Bills and New York Jets and their goal of reaching the postseason would become a reality.  And then two weeks in a row the Miami Dolphins’ offense (forget the rest of the team for a moment) forgot to show up, and OC Mike Sherman finally succeeded in burying this football team for another season.

The last two games of the season were supposed to be two of the more winnable football games for the Miami Dolphins.  They were the favorites to take the final Wildcard spot in the AFC, and even controlled their own destiny.  And yet, the team that took the field for the final two games looked like a team that was destined for the number one pick in the draft, not the final playoff spot.  I understand that the team as a whole was flat and unmotivated, and for that we can surely point the blame at HC Joe Philbin for not preparing his team well enough for battle.  But the lack of offensive production falls on Mike Sherman (once again) and his play calling.

How can a team who is fighting for their postseason lives only score 7 points in two games? How can an offense that was coming off of its best two performances (on the road against PIT and at home against NE) get shut out by a mediocre Bills team and only score 7 points against a Jets team that the ‘Fins defeated 23-3 just four weeks prior?  It is inexcusable.  And it is almost completely Sherman’s fault.  True, Ryan Tannehill has made some bad decisions these past two weeks, Brian Hartline was not a factor at all, and the offensive line played horribly against the Bills.  However, Tannehill, Hartline or the offensive line are not calling the plays.  Part of being a coach in the NFL, a PROFESSIONAL football league, is being flexible and drawing a game plan that suits not only your team but that attacks the opposing defense’s weaknesses.  This is something that Sherman has not done consistently once this season.  Knowing the ‘Fins’ problems on the O-Line and the fact that the Bills boasted the NFL’s best pass rush would have steered any offensive coordinator away from trying to throw in the pocket or throw the ball down field with long routes.  But no, Sherman maintained stubborn and only got his young QB destroyed in a seemingly cursed pocket.  Instead of implementing new and creative running plays, Sherman used the read option over and over.  He then abandoned the run completely after just 12 attempts of the SAME play.  Absolutely ridiculous.

It was bad enough that the Dolphins were shut out in Buffalo.  But to rebound from that game and only score 7 points the following week against a division rival at home?  That is absurd.  Put Tannehill’s interceptions aside for a moment.  Forget about Hartline’s injury and the drops that some of the receivers had.  The Dolphins were still able to drive the football deep into the New York Jets’ territory.  They had an absolutely beautiful drive that resulted in a Mike Wallace TD catch on a fantastic read by Ryan Tannehill.  They executed everything right, and Sherman’s play calling was perfect on that drive.  And then, as if a switch flipped inside his head, Miami’s OC failed to organize a similar drive, shied away from what was working, and the Miami offense stalled.   You can blame it on Tannehill and the offense’s miscues all you’d like, but Mike Sherman is the manipulator behind the marionettes.

Here is my my message to Miami’s owner Stephen Ross.  Please save this organization and fan-base the trouble of sitting through these painful games next season and bring some passion and excitement to your coaching staff.  If you don’t want to replace Joe Philbin, I understand and that is fine.  However, you better replace Mike Sherman and bring in an offensive coordinator who knows what it takes to score points and win football games in this century.  Preferably one who is willing to change the game plan when it is not working.   Something has got to give in Miami.  There is no saying “this year was not our year” or “we’ll get them next year after a great draft.”  The truth is, this year was very much “our year.”  That is, until Mike Sherman put on the headset and blew it.

FINS UP!

Tags: Featured Miami Dolphins MIke Sherman Popular

  • Mike

    uhhhhh YA. perfectly written, and a perfect message to Ross. Again finally its refreshing to see someone writing this stuff in the press and not afraid to call these guys out. If Philbin doesnt wanna part with his “Buddy” then Philbin can take a hike too. ( I persoanlly think he should be relieved anyway).. Btw how come no one talks of the horrible Defence by Coyle ? clean slate this mess ross !!

    • Eric Roddy

      Thanks Mike! As for Coyle’s defense, i think the problems are more with the personnel than with him. Sure, he could dial up more creative blitzes and different coverage packages, but the linebackers we paid a fortune for simply aren’t that good. Maybe it his system, maybe not. I would be willing to give him one more year. The other thing to remember is the defense is on the field WAY more than they should be due to stalled drives by our offense. If we scored points and gave them more of a rest, they mad do better. Amen to a clean slate. Thanks for reading and commenting

  • Jcartwright67

    Eric, you need to learn how to express your opinion in a clearer manner. LOL. I feel the pain too. It just seemed that Sherman schemed for and was watching a different game each week and never seemed to adapt or continue with what was working. He abandoned the run too quickly, never got a TE (not named Clay) involved, used Wallace as a decoy for the first half of the season, and never made the right changes at half time. Often, it appeared no changes were made at half time…but that can’t be the case. Sherman is a good man that worked his entire adult life in football sacrificing much I am sure. He knows and understands far more about football than I, probably you, and most of the readers/commenters on this site. I only hope that he understands that he is a bigger part of the problem than the solution in Miami and he offers his friend, Philbin, a lending hand and retires. Its time Sir.

    • Eric Roddy

      haha I appreciate the comment and read. Hopefully you are right and we won’t have to deal with his nonsense next season. I don’t doubt his football knowledge, just his common sense! He seems far too set in his ways to adapt. And yet, this league is all about adapting. Look at the Patriots. One week they lose to us, the next week they adapt and murder the Ravens in Baltimore. Partly thanks to a flexible offensive coordinator. Thanks for the read!