Now that some of the dust has settled, let's go around and see what some of the south Florida media members are saying about the 0-2 Dolphins. Surely it won't be pretty. But it'll be food for thought I suppose.
NOTHING TO BUILD ON
First off, the Herald's Armando Salguero tells us all that he doesn't think this Dolphins team gives us much hope. Sounds pretty uplifting, huh. Here's an excerpt:
What else to think of a team with proud but aging veterans not playing to the level of their history, and young, unproven players performing as if better days are never coming?
''These all go in the same category,'' a dejected, defeated Taylor said afterward. ``They all [stink].''
He said something more colorful than stink but that word accurately describes the Dolphins right now. They smell of defeat.
They reek on offense and the proof is in their five turnovers, four coming on Trent Green interceptions. The Miami offense was so awful against Dallas it turned the center-quarterback exchange into an adventure.
At one point the team that once turned a fake spike into a glorious victory in the Meadowlands could not actually execute a clock play at home. Green fumbled the toss to the ground and it cost the Dolphins a valuable down when they were trying to drive in a two-minute drill.
Yes, there were moments of clarity against a Dallas defense that yielded 35 points last week. But those rays of sunshine were more often clouded by the turnover statistic that kills games, kills seasons, kills careers.
''No,'' Chris Chambers said when asked if he can imagine any scenario in which Miami can win on a day it commits five turnovers. ``You can't in pee-wee. Not in high school, not in college. There's no way in the world we can recover from that.''
And yet the Dolphins were somehow, inexplicably, in this game at halftime. Sunday marked the second consecutive week the Dolphins were close after one half. And it marked the second week the defense collapsed in the second half.
''Once again we had a breakdown in the second half,'' defensive lineman Vonnie Holliday said. ``We've got to find a way to stop teams in the second half.''
Lovely. Armando apparently thinks we should all pack it in for this season. That may be a bit of an overreaction, but he probably isn't too far off. After the next 4 games, the schedule gets so much tougher. If they can't win at least 3 of these next four, then I, too, will be ready to pack it in for this year. But I'm just not ready to yet, no matter how convincing Armando Salguero can sound.
THE QB SITUATION
David Hyde, of the Sun-Sentinel, is starting to wonder when the time will come for rookie QB John Beck to be thrown into the wolves. Here's some of what he says:
When do we see the rookie quarterback?
Rookie John Beck can throw four interceptions as easily as Green. He can fumble a snap. He can be a major reason, along with some dumb special teams play, why a 13-10 third-quarter lead gets lost on a Sunday in September or one in December.
"Some of the early [interceptions] were maybe just me trying to get a ball in there that was maybe a little tight," Green said. "Then when you're trying to catch up, you force stuff."
He said: "It was frustrating."
He said: "I'll take the blame on all of them."
Across the field was the vision of what the Dolphins want. There was Tony Romo, in his 11th NFL start, beating the Dolphins with his strong arm and young legs. Did you see? Juking Jason Taylor to the ground. Needling a pass to Owens.
"Tony, I thought, made some plays when he needed to make some plays," Green said.
Romo is 27. Beck is 26. But Romo also is in his fifth NFL season. So this leads to the age-old debate, the one that has led to regimes rising or falling, the one about when it's time for a kid quarterback to play.
That was the debate last week in Cleveland over Brady Quinn. ESPN's Ron Jaworski, as respected a quarterback authority as there is, argued loudly for Quinn playing. Sean Salisbury, another former quarterback, argued it would do more harm than good so early in his rookie year.
Do you point to Houston's David Carr being ruined by playing so soon or the Colts' Peyton Manning being educated?
The Dolphins aren't a quarterback away on offense. They don't just have the obvious problems that caused Nick Saban to flee to Alabama. They have added problems now that Brown can't beat out Jesse Chatman, if tight end David Martin is what we've seen, and when no receivers are feared.
Week 2 isn't the time to wonder where the rookies are in the Dolphins lineup. But the time is coming. And, after Sunday, it's coming more quickly than anyone hoped or wanted at quarterback.
It's definitely coming more quickly than anyone had thought or hoped. I couldn't believe the number of people who are already calling for John Beck to start. But like Hyde says in the article. Some point to Peyton Manning and talk about how learning early is beneficial. Others point to David Carr and how him starting early ruined his career. I, personally, point to Patrick Ramsey because he had all the physical tools but was getting absolutely killed in Steve Spurrier's offense and with terrible offensive line play. That's what I fear about Beck. Now, the Dolphins' line right now is in the "gelling" process. They're improving ever so slightly. So let's give them more time to "gel" and improve and then, much later on in the season, we can revisit the idea of starting Beck. But right now is too early.