Hi guys. From what I can see in the comments there are a lot of new guys around and a bunch of the old timers gone. I haven't been around for a while either but still check out the site regularly. Back in the day I was known for being one of the most active non-americans in the site, as well as Neo's sworn nemesis.
Although I did burnout and ended up leaving, I hold this community in high regard because without a doubt there is a bunch of high quality knowledge being thrown around here on a daily basis. This is why I now come back asking for help.
I am putting together a pitch of a full blown rebuilding project for an MLS franchise that can't get it`s act together. The thing is -and the reason I come here for help- that when this project started to come off the ground I immediately thought about the Dolphins 08 season and using that effort as a blueprint for this thing.
Back then we couldn't discuss enough the 3 year rebuilding process this team would undergo. From mentality and philosophy to identity on the field. This covered the type of GM the franchise would select, and then the Head Coach and his staff. It too focused on the type of Free Agents it would sign and the Draft strategy it would employ. Year one emphasized character and fundamentals (O-line, D-line). Year two saw a great 08 class develop as well as continue to build through the draft; shoring up the defense's skill positions with Vontae Davis and Sean Smith, both archetypes of this regime's philosophy. Year three - just as planned and overzealously anticipated by us- finally saw the temporary completion of the rebuilding process with an extremely aggressive offseason where the team added superstars Brandon Marshall and Karlos Dansby (exaggeration for emotional effect lol).
At the end of this process the Dolphins went from 1-15 to being selected by many analysts as a serious dark horse candidate in the AFC East race for 2010. They began to be recognized as a tough as nails team that lived and die by the run - both on defense and offense-. Most of their core players were big and strong and mentally tough, with above average leadership qualities. As a fan you finally had a competitive team on the field week in and week out. A team with an identity -both mental and physical-. They beat Minny on the road and the Super Bowl champions in one of the toughest stadiums in the NFL. Unfortunately this regime could never find a Franchise QB who could lead the already competitive team they had built through three offseasons. At the end this proofed too costly for both the Front Office and the Coaching Staff and ended by them losing the team; first on the field and then off it too.
Understandably fans and ownership were pissed off and if not for the lockout and Jim Harbaugh's novella this regime's tenure would have ended in disgrace and failure.
However, big picture aside and focusing solely on the rebuilding process itself, I can't help but believe that they did a tremendous job of building up this roster from scratch and fielding a competitive team.
What I am asking of you is to help me identify the angles, decisions, and strategies this Front Office employed to make this turnaround happen.
- Get rid of old leadership rings (J.Taylor, Zach)
- Build lines first
- Bring in veteran leadership (Pennington)