Another Dolphins .500 season is unacceptable


The Miami Dolphins can do no better than .500 this year and that is not acceptable. Not anymore. In fact, .500 is being generous.

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This week the Dolphins will travel to San Diego. The Chargers are 3-10 so this should be an easy road game. Nothing is easy when you travel across the country so assuming that Miami will fly in, win, and fly out is assuming too much. Following the Chargers the Dolphins return home for the remainder of the season.

Indianapolis is another team who is struggling but some of those struggles come as a result of Andrew Luck missing time with an injury. There is a chance that Luck could return by the time the team heads to Miami in two weeks. Regardless the Colts are not the team that people expected them to be. Should be another notch in the win column for the Dolphins. Then they wrap the season with New England who is looking to secure home field advantage. Week 17 may be critical for them.

For the Dolphins, it will not be.

Miami will play that game for pride and pride alone. Hoping to win at least one game against a division opponent this season. It leaves a mark. With the Patriots likely favorites and a tough game for the Dolphins, Miami will realistically finish the season at 7-9.

The Dolphins haven’t had a winning season since 2008 when they surprised the league with the Wild Cat formation and solid play from quarterback Chad Pennington. Since that 2008 playoff appearance the Dolphins have finished, 7-9 three times, 8-8 twice, and 6-10 once. This season will likely fall in the 7-9 or 8-8 category but does anyone honestly believe that Miami can win all three of their last games? Without a smirk?

Prior to 2008 the Dolphins recorded four consecutive losing seasons and the last 10-6 record came in 2003 when Dave Wannstedt was still in control of the team. Since then, Miami has changed coaches five times, have had three interim head coaches, gone through who knows how many coordinators, and a God awful amount of quarterbacks. They have also gone through two owners.

As an owner, Stephen Ross knows only losing. His current interim head coach told media that “I have been here for six years and nothing has gone the way we wanted it to.” Adding to these losing seasons are some huge free agent and trade names that have done nothing to help the team win. Ndamukong Suh, Brandon Marshall, Mike Wallace, Dannell Ellerbe, Brandon Albert, and the list goes on.

Fans of the Dolphins are tiring of the same retread efforts. The team in 2015 looks no different from the last six teams. Only the plates on the back of the jerseys have changed. The stadium is being upgraded and it will look beautiful housing a team that looks awful. Is there any end in sight?

Not likely. Sad to say but true. These are dark times for the Dolphins and each season there is a renewed sense of confidence and by mid-season that hope is drained. Dolphins fans speak of what-if’s and mathematical possibilities but in their hearts they know it’s all the same product on the field.

Earlier today Mike Florio of wrote a scathing truth about Stephen Ross. Specifically the fact that he is an absentee owner. And he would be right. Ross isn’t here and since he is not here he can distance himself from the mess that he has contributed to. While Florio is right in his assessment, he is not a fan of the Dolphins so the pain of all this rings much truer if you are.

Miami was once a proud team. A winning team. They were relevant. Miami hasn’t been relevant since Jimmy Johnson was the coach and through the first two and a half years of Wannstedt.

The worst part about all of this is there is not easy solution to fix this problem. If you are in the group of fans that believe Ross is the reason for this teams issues then I would simply direct you to the state of the team with Wayne Huiznenga as owner. The only coach Ross has hired has been Philbin. That is not to say that some of these problems, specifically the national attention brought to the team through GM and HC searches isn’t Ross’ problem. It is.

The hiring of Mike Tannenbaum only serves to further cloud the state and future of the team. Tannenbaum’s time in New York wasn’t stellar but he does provide far more NFL knowledge than anyone else in the building. This off-season will be a huge one for the Dolphins but a simple coaching change isn’t going to fix what’s wrong with the team.

The Dolphins will enter the off-season needing corner backs, linebackers, offensive lineman, and those are starters. To say nothing of the lack of depth on the roster. While there are pieces to build around those pieces are spread over the team with no real direction to future consistency. Over the past six years the Dolphins have made player moves that would indicate the team believed they were simply one or two players away from competing but that hasn’t been the case.

How this team moves forward will set the stage for the next three years. If the next group of coaches can’t actually coach the team, game plan, and motivate the players, I will be copying and pasting this article three or four seasons from now.

Whatever needs to be changed needs to get done. This losing is repetitive and it’s becoming a joke on a national stage.