For the third time this season, the Miami Dolphins have found a way to blow a lead in the fourth quarter, to ultimately lose the game. So much for Mike Nolan and the Dolphins vaunted defense. To be fair, the Dolphins defense played well enough for the first 3 quarters of the game. But ultimately, they found a way to give up the go ahead score (again) in the 4th quarter. First it was the Dolphins losing to Colt McCoy and the Browns. Then, it was the Dolphins blowing a lead to Tim Tebow and the Broncos. Yesterday, the Dolphins eventually collapsed against a better opponent; Eli Manning and the Giants.
The Dolphins looked good early, jumping out to a 14-3 lead and leaving MetLife stadium in a state of shock. Reggie Bush had a few big runs and the Dolphins offensive line kept Matt Moore upright, which was surprising. I was at the game, and at 14-3, panic began to set in for both Giants fans and Suck for Luckers alike. The Giants were coming off of their bye week and looked sluggish. The Giants woke up before the half and went in for a big touchdown that cut the Dolphins lead at the half to 14-10. As I sat in the stands with my friends that are Giants fans, I assured them that the Dolphins wouldn’t score more than a field goal in the second half. Sure enough, the Dolphins opened the second half with a field goal fist pumping scoring drive, giving them a 17-10 lead.
Rumors have been swirling for weeks about the Miami Dolphins and their desire to talk to Bill Cowher about coaching the team in 2012. First, there were reports that the Dolphins had intermediaries reaching out to Cowher. Then, last week, a report surfaced that claimed the Dolphine Owner reached out to Cowher’s agent. Well, yesterday Bill Cowher decided to address the rumors on the CBS NFL Pregame show. Here’s what he said, courtesy of the Sun Sentinel:
“I have not been contacted directly or indirectly by any football team, or any organization. It’s all speculation and it’s unfortunate because it effects the lives of many people who are in the profession”
“I’m here to say to you today, I do not plan on coaching next year. I love where I work, and more importantly I enjoy the people I work with [at CBS]. So I can put all this speculation to rest, and if I have to repeat this in December I will.”
Cowher clearly felt that he needed to say something about the rumors connecting his name to the currently filled Dolphins head coaching job. After all, Cowher has reportedly told ALL teams that he will not talk to them about a head coaching job that is currently filled. Last time I checked, Tony Sparano was still the coach of the Dolphins.
On Friday night, NFL.com reported that Miami Dolphins Owner, Stephen Ross, contacted Bill Cowher’s agent regarding the Dolphins head coaching job. The report also suggests that Cowher has refused to discuss any head coaching job while the job is currently filled. Last time I checked, Tony Sparano’s name was still on the Head Coach’s office at Dolphins headquarters. When I first saw this report I thought that there was no way the Dolphins billionaire owner could be this stupid. After all, we all flipped out on him 2 weeks ago when reports surfaced that “intermediaries” from the Dolphins had talked to people close to Cowher. Since Cowher has made it clear for weeks that he would not discuss any job that is currently filled, why in the heck would Ross reach out to his agent? It makes no sense!!
Later Friday night, the Miami Herald contacted Ross for a statement and the Dolphins Owner denied having any contact with Cowher’s agent….Of course he would. Even if he did contact Cowher’s agent, Stephen Ross would HAVE to deny it. After all, this is the same owner who made a cross-country trip to meet with Jim Harbaugh in January and embarrassed the Dolphins organization and Tony Sparano (who was still the Dolphins coach at the time).
This Sunday’s 1pm match-up between the New York Giants (4-2) and Miami Dolphins (0-6) will feature two teams at opposite ends of the standings. The Giants enter into Sunday’s matchup leading the NFC East division; while the Dolphins remain in AFC East’s basement. The Giants are also coming off their bye week, thus giving them plenty of time to prepare (not that they really need to). With their second trip to the New Meadowlands this year, will the Dolphins get a nice W treat or more tricks?
What to Watch For:
Giants’ Offense vs. Dolphin Defense:
The Giants offense has been generally off-balanced between their ability to rush and pass. They enter the game being ranked 6th in passing and 30th in rushing. Regardless of this imbalance, the Giants have been able to put up points on the scoreboard; they are ranked 9th in pts/game with 25.7. I find their success through the air to be a bit surprising, based on Eli Manning’s history of varying play. Eli has had INTs this season, but has found a way to limit them. Eli currently has more than double the amount of TDs then he does INTs with 11TDs to 5INTs. This success may have come with his ability to spread the ball around. The Giants currently have 5 receivers with 15+ receptions; with Hakeem Nicks leading all with 32rec., 508yards, and 3TDs. The Dolphins’ secondary is no longer at the very bottom of the barrel when it comes to pass defense being ranked 21st (Thanks Tebow!). I still foresee the Dolphins struggling against Eli and his WRs; as Vontae Davis is listed as doubtful for the game.
As previously mentioned, the Giant running has been struggling as of late. This may be due to the inquiry of Brandon Jacobs. This has left the majority of the workload to be carried by Ahmad Bradshaw. Bradshaw is only averaging 65yards/game, but has racked up 5 rushing TDs and 1 through the air. The Dolphins’ gave up 104yards on 25 carries to Bronco running backs last week. That was without having, at least shouldn’t have had to, worry about a passing game. The Dolphins were finally able to put pressure on a QB last week, but I think that was a product of a poor Bronco O-line. The defense has played better the past few weeks, but I do not foresee that continuing this week.
Alright Dolphins fans, I need your help. I’m going to the Miami Dolphins/New York Giants game on Sunday. I plan on making a statement at the game, among the TENS of other Dolphins fans that will be in attendance. I truly doubt that many other Dolphins fans will be in the crowd. Like I said earlier in the week, I plan on wearing a paper bag on my head at some point in the game (secretly hoping to get on TV!). The truth is, this Dolphins team has disappointed me beyond belief. This season was filled with false hope for the Dolphins. They have been putrid this season and leave me no choice but to do this. THE DOLPHINS BLEW A 15 POINT 4TH QUARTER LEAD TO TIM TEBOW!
So now I need your help….I need you to vote and let me know which saying you think would be best for Dolphins/Giants game on Sunday. Please take a second and vote in the poll below and let me know what you think is the most appropriate saying for my Dolphins paper bag:
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This week the speculation continued about who is going to be the next Miami Dolphins coach. We thought it would be a good time to open up the PhinNation.com forum to see what you think. This week’s Dolphins Debate asks “Who should coach the Dolphins in 2012 and beyond?” We feel safe in asking this question now, because Tony Sparano has about as much chance of keeping his job as I do of becoming the next Dolphins coach. This week, we have replies from 2 of our PhinNation.com writers, as well as one reader’s suggestion. Please remember to vote at the end and leave a comment with your endorsement for who you’d like to see coaching the Dolphins next year.
There are a few good options out there to replace Tony Sparano. My main credential the organization has to consider when looking for a replacement is that it has to be someone from the outside. I’m tired of seeing friends or guys with “ties” get jobs for the Dolphins. How many of Parcell’s “guys” and other ex-Cowboys have to fail for us until we see that it isn’t working? Another credential the new guy needs to have is history. No more giving inexperienced assistant coaches or college coaches (with the exception of Urban Meyer) a shot at being our head coach. Let’s get a guy who has a successful past. With these two credentials being said, I think there are a few “wish-list” coaches that I would want.
I would obviously LOVE to get Cowher, but if we are unable to land him, I would love to see us make a serious push for Jon Gruden. Gruden has a history of reviving bad teams; as he did with his time in Oakland and Tampa Bay. In his eleven seasons in the NFL, he has only had 3 losing seasons, went to the playoffs 5 times, and won SB XXXVII with the Bucs. He has a history of success and is an outside guy; check those off. I also LOVE the intensity he brings to a team. I have read that Tony is a passionate guy, but he is a “player’s coach.” This organization needs a guy that will demand success and put players on a short leash. I think Gruden fits this perfectly. He’s also a big name and an offensive guy that will bring excitement to Miami. We all know Gruden loves his QBs and assuming we continue to “Suck for Luck,” he will have one of the best to start fresh with. I love Gruden for the job. I know he just resigned with ESPN for 5 years, but as “The Million Dollar Man” Ted DeBiase used to say, “Everybody’s got a price!” Here’s to Hoping! Always, Phins Up!
RB Daniel Thomas – This weeks matchup for the Dolphins favors their running backs as the New York Giants are giving up the 3rd most fantasy points to opposing running backs in the last four weeks. Thomas hasn’t been 100% all year and still is the Dolphins leading rusher. He’s good for 20+ touches a game and going forward should be leaned on as he’s the only running back doing anything on this team. I have Daniel Thomas ranked 15th out of running backs ahead of DeMarco Murray and Jonathan Stewart.
Projection : 21 Attempts – 89 yards – 1 TD
2 Catches – 12 yards
WR Brandon Marshall – Brandon Marshall and Daniel Thomas have been the only fantasy relevant players all year for this team and week 8 is no different. Marshall is still getting a ton of targets with 62 total on the season making him the 6th most targeted receiver in the NFL. The targets are a good sign, but in fantasy we need touchdowns for points and that has been the crutch of Marshall’s tenure in Miami, with only 4 total touchdowns in one and a half seasons. This week if he continues to play the way he did vs Darelle Revis and Champ Bailey, then he should go off against a depleted New York Giants secondary. I’d rank Brandon Marshall as the 13th best wide receiver play this week ahead of guys like DeSean Jackson and Anquan Boldin.
Projection : 8 Catches – 111 yards – 1 TD
My Sleeper Picks for Week 8
QB Matt Cassel - Cassel and the Kansas City Chiefs are at home in prime time Monday night against the San Diego Chargers. The Chiefs receiving corp is really starting to make plays with the likes of Dwayne Bowe and Steve Breaston. They have caught 516 yards and 5 touchdowns from Cassel in the Chiefs last three games. The Chargers defense just gave up 3 touchdown passes from Mark Sanchez so they aren’t playing well right now. The Chiefs will likely be down and he’ll have to sling it for them to have a shot at getting their fourth straight win. I have Matt Cassel ranked as the 13th quarterback play this week.
Projection : 21 for 32 – 240 yard – 3 TD’s / 1 INT
Watching the Miami Dolphins drama unfold this season is a lot like watching the Jersey Shore on MTV. There’s drama, dysfunction, and it’s so insanely idiotic that you can’t help but watch and laugh. The Dolphins are a very unlikeable bunch this year…not only because they are 0-6 and have looked terrible, but because the Dolphins players seem deeply divided. Dolphins players have lashed out at fans regarding the Suck for Luck wave that’s sweeping the country.
There’s clearly a disconnect between Dolphins players and fans….and now it seems that there is some disconnect between the Dolphins players themselves. After the Dolphins loss to the Broncos on Sunday, Reggie Bush said that the Dolphins “stink”. Well, apparently that didn’t sit too well with some of his teammates. Today, Yeramiah Bell was asked what he thought of Bush’s assessment of the Dolphins….he replied “he stinks”. He didn’t stop there, saying “That shouldn’t be said around this locker room. We know that we’re 0-6 and we’re not playing the best but at the same time there’s no need for that.”
For the last 3 weeks I’ve listened to all of the debate about the Miami Dolphins fans’ desire to Suck for Luck. I’ve listened to ‘experts’ on the radio/TV argue whether or not the Dolphins (or any team) should Suck for Luck…… I’ve listened to Dolphins players lash out at fans that support the movement…..I’ve listened to Dolphins fans who are arguing with one another about how loyal of a fan they are. The truth is, no matter which side of the argument you are on, the Dolphins futility is a direct result of the inadequacy of the QB position.
Think about it, the Dolphins have brought in big name types like Jimmy Johnson, Bill Parcels, and Nick Saban. None of them have worked. Since Dan Marino retired, the Dolphins have started 16 different quarterbacks because none of the big name, head honchos, have been able to identify a solid QB option. The best quarterback (since Marino) to wear a Dolphins uniform was Chad Pennington in the magical season of 2008. To be fair though, even that season was a bit misleading. The Dolphins DID play a very weak schedule that year, even though they managed to win the AFC East. So does it really matter if the Dolphins bring in Bill Cowher, Jon Gruden, or Jeff Fisher to run the team? Only, if they are bringing a franchise QB with them.
I’m not going to spend a lot of time on this post Dolphins fans, just wanted to pass along the news that Tony Sparano has apparently put his house on the market. This could mean absolutely nothing as Ben Volin of the Palm Beach Post pointed out. After all, Sparano had his house on the market back in January AFTER he was given his contract extension. Anyway, here’s the tweet:
Like I’ve said before, I like Tony Sparano…..I just don’t like him as the Dolphins coach moving forward. Seriously, we’ve seen more field goal fist pumps than touchdown chest pounds….That equates to the Dolphins losing games. We all know that it’s just a matter of when (not if) the Dolphins decide to let Sparano go in 2011. There will be a new coach in 2012, but until that time, we can only wait and speculate.
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