To say it simply, I sat there emotionless. Not caring or freaking out. Not complaining or yelling. Not rooting or bashing. I just sat there and watched that game numb. It was as if I already knew the outcome from the moment the game started. The look on Philbin's face, the comments from Ross. It all just cried out that this is over. This season is over. This Front Office and team is over.
We have become the team that people root against. The team that once stood so proud is now falling down in the media, on the field, and I don't see an end in sight. I know what some of you are thinking. Step away from the edge, don't be fair-weathered, or whatever other negative epitaph you want to assign me. It's ok to not feel how I feel or think how i think. I will not defend how much of a fan I am for most of you know me and are aware that I can be as passionate as any and my love for this team is strong. However, my love for this team feels broken right now. I am faithful and still hold this team high on the list of things I care about. But right now, I don't really know what to think.
I was hoping to avoid a rant here, so I will try to remain objective and explain the things I think we need to change and the things that I think need to go.
#1 I have have been a Jeff Ireland supporter since the beginning and while I think he is still a good GM and has a bright future in the NFL, I think the time has come for a change. I believed in him and his moves, but they continue to fall apart. I could point to coaching, talent evaluating, or communication as the cause for some of this, but the bottom line is that it is not working. The FA pickups have mostly been disappointing and while he brings in some great talent, too often the talent is not playing up to potential. I think that the Team needs a fresh start and a new regime. This off the field situation makes the mistakes that are being made on the field much more painful and I no longer believe that Ireland can put us in the best position to win.
#2 We have a real problem with the coaching staff. We had 10 days to prepare for this game. They killed us with a back up running back and a stout defensive line. No excuses. We were awful in every phase of the game last night. Coaches, all of them, have to go. Again, this is not just because of the loss but more because of every loss and how inconsistent this team has been. We need a fresh start.
#3 Mike Wallace is the highest paid #2 receiver in the game. His lack of focus and effort is disgraceful. Brian Hartline has 100 times the heart and passion that Wallace has. Wallace did not even try to break up the int at the end of the game. He did not even try to make a play at it. He consistently has not tried this season. He has countless drops on the season and I would consider benching him for the a few games to get his head straight. At this point, this team needs to start playing for the future and molding these players into the guys we want going forward. I don't even think we could get a viable trade partner for Wallace the way he has played this season. We are stuck with him, so its time to develop him the same as one would a rookie. Forget about the money, we need to remind him of the passion and drive that makes winners.
#4 Ryan Tannehill is our guy. That is the first time I have ever said that. It is not because of his consistent play but more because I think he can be the leader we need. He is a 4-5 year project and will be a good QB in this league. The attributes that he has gives us a huge advantage. His weaknesses could be better hidden with a better game plan and a better coach. He lacks awareness and lacks the "Peyton" factor, but he can still learn those things in time. I wish we could bring Pennington to Miami to be the next QB coach. I think with the right direction he could become a star.
#5 We severely over-rated this defense and under-rated the players that let go of in the off season. Letting Dansby go was a mistake. Our defense is not performing well and our pass rush is not what I expected. I know that a part of this is a in direct relation to the offensive struggles in maintaining drives, but we are looking more and more average by the week.
I want to believe in this team, but right now I don't feel anything. I still am hoping for a solid finish to this season, but more importantly i want to see consistency. We have a tough road coming up and this team needs to play for their jobs. If we finish the season with 7 or less wins, it is a total failure and changes will have to take place. Its unfortunate that I can not think of solutions as much as I can identify the problems. But i have faith that this team will make me proud again. We just need to stop reaching for players, coaches, and flashy new toys and get back to the basics. The last time we made the playoffs was because of a team that played well together and virtually mistake free. This team needs to stop trying to be flashy and focus on the fundamentals. The last several champions have been teams who come together and played consistently and mistake free. It wasn't 5 td games or 400 yards passing that won them titles. It was good coaching and better execution. This is what i want. This is what Miami needs. Thank You for reading.