If you are a rah-rah fan like it is your right to be please don't keep reading because although trying to give an objective point of view, the outcome does seem to be pretty grim and will come off as negative.
The offseason, particularly training camp and the first few games of the preseason, is traditionally a time of if not great, moderate hope for a fan of any given team. With a brand new season in the horizon and the crappy old season in the rear view mirror it seems like anything could happen. However, this is far from a rational process, more so if most of the key pieces of a 7-9 season are still in place. Some would say expecting a successful result from the same formula that didn't work in the past is near the definition of insanity. Nonetheless, fans and media alike will most likely ignore these facts and keep a positive outlook. However, traditionally, mediocre teams with shaky Qb situations need no more than a bad couple of games to start the season to make fans and media -even ownership- immediately regress to panic mode and a negative mindset. This happens so quick that most of the time you don't even see it coming. It happened last year to solid teams like Dallas, Minnesota, Cincinnati, Tennessee and San Francisco no later than week 4 or 5.
Unfortunately, I believe we are following the same path some of these teams did. In my opinion two of the recurring factors in this kind of scenario are either a lame duck Qb and or a lame duck coach. Dallas had one in Wade Philips, Minnesota had one in Brad Childress and Brett Favre, Cincy had one in Marvin Lewis and a qb that quickly fell apart, Tennessee never was able to say they had a starting Qb they felt completely comfortable with, on and off the field ( questions about his leadership ability were raised too, sounds familiar?) Last of all the 49ers were the more similar team to this year's dolphins. They had a pretty solid defense, a not only pretty unreliable QB, but a lame duck one too (was there because they couldn't find anybody else) and a head coach who didn't particularly stand out in any area of the game (anybody still out there who wants to stand up for Sparano's O-Line expertise?) but the motivational aspect of it. Needless to say Alex Smith fell apart pretty quick ( what should've bothered their fans is that he failed exactly because of the same reasons he had failed time and time again in the past and still the FO kept him out there, just like what we've got here) Then, Mike Singletary lost the team because its only natural that motivation starts declining with losing and the prospect of a lost season.
What I think we have in Miami right now is at least two guys that are not only in similar positions to the guys above, but worse.
The fact of the matter is that we don't even need a new losing season to make it clear Sparano is not a good enough Head Coach, Ownership and Jeff Ireland already told us that when they ridiculed the organization traveling across the country to sign a college coach to be the highest paid head coach in the NFL -that's how desperate they were and how little they thought of Sparano- . We don't need another losing season to tell us Chad Henne is not a starting QB in the NFL, they already did so when they went out of their way to trade for mediocre Kyle Orton despite a shortened off season and limited time for him to adjust to a new team and new offense -thats how desperate they were and showed how little they think of Henne. So why should we expect a successful season out of an organization that is putting a product out there despite desperately wanting to get rid of it in the past? That would be pretty close to the definition of insanity.
If recent history in the NFL and simple logic tell us anything is that we should at least recognize there is a strong possibility that by week 10 we no longer have a starting Qb in Chad Henne and a Head Coach in Tony Sparano. Hell, the organization already made it clear they would rather fill those critical positions with somebody else before the season even starts.