Coming off a 6-10 season where much was promised, all was shattered, and marginal redemption was earned. The Head Coach was sacked mid way through the season, and rightly so. Sporano was a great and classy guy, but he didn't put enough in the 'W' or 'TD' column.
Jeff Fisher became the top candidate. He was a good coach in Tennessee, had been to a superbowl, and the belief was he knew how to be the head coach of an NFL team. Steve Ross designated him as the top guy he wanted. He brought a lot of $$$ to the table, and free helicopter rides. Fisher was not interested, Miami was simply used for driving up the price. I was sickened that St. Louis of all places, the second worst team in the league, was viewed as the premier franchise. Many claimed The Dolphins could do without, and they were right. Fisher has brought in Greg Williams and Brian Schottenheimer, these are not co-ordinators we wish to see coach The Dolphins. Schottenheimer being the OC that gave us hilarity in the Jets, and Williams who's blitz heavy defense went a long way to losing against the 49ers in the playoffs and is in some highly publicized hot water right now. But the fact remains, Steve Ross made this guy his #1 choice, and even with his money, was not even a serious contender. Not good.
So the Dolphins bring in Philbin, who is a very well rated coach in the NFL, and a first time coach we have high hopes for. He brings with him the ability to coach qbs very well, and a great offensive mind. He blew us away with his press conference, speaking very well, with a clear goal and vision. Lets hope he lives up to expectations.
Peyton Manning becomes available. Many facets of the media tip Miami as the favourite, and the fanbase explodes with anticpeytion (sorry, couldn't resist). Manning flies to Miami after his release and it appears to be an excellent sign. The Dolphins do not seek out a meeting, they simply twiddle their thumbs as Manning flies to Denver. Not to worry though, he'll call us right!? He visits Arizona, and then Dan Marino convinces him to let Miami meet him for 6 hours in Indianapolis. It becomes apparent that Miami where never really in the stakes. While legitimate sounding reasons are there, I hear excuses as to why Miami couldn't get the guy they wanted AGAIN. It wears a little thin. There is a reason why Miami is never a serious option for big players or coaches.
I believe it is because the business side of the franchise interferes with the football side, time and time again. Gatorday being a very sad example.
I think Ireland overall has done a good job in free agency. The decision to trade Marshall was a sound one in the cold light of day, his problems became Miami's problems, and the West Coast Offense likes to spread the ball around, and there is no way Marshall would be happy with that.
Richard Marshall looks like he has the potential to be a good nickle, Westerman is a good pickup at the right price, Hicks could be a solid player at guard, and returning Solial means Starks can stay how we like him.
Ireland is playing hardball with Matt Flynn, and if he is still asking for big $, he is right to. The other players are just there for leverage I think.
Theres my rant over, and if you've read this far, thank you and I hoped you enjoyed it.