Welcome to week 4 of the ‘The State of the Miami Dolphins'! This week I have the privilege of welcoming two more members of thephinsider community - Dolfan00 and David Leal. Lets hear what they had to say about all things Dolphins-related.
So without further ado, lets kick things off with Dolfan00. Over the past couple of years, Jeff Ireland has frequently attracted criticism from the fans, leading many to jump on the 'Fireland' bandwagon. Since this year's free agency and draft, has your perceptions of Ireland changed?
I always thought Jeff Ireland was a great player evaluator and was good at finding FA acorns that could help the team (with the huge exception of Marc Colombo.) The only perception of him that's changed for me is that this offseason and draft he appeared to take a lot more risks where in past years, he always seemed to play it safe. He's setting himself up for either a great return on his investments or a big flop - hopefully the former. Currently I'm in a "wait-and-see" mentality because this year will be very telling for his legacy as a GM, but I do find it strangely interesting how his name fits perfectly into "Fireland."
Leading on from the previous question, since Joe Philbin has become Miami's head coach, fans seem to love him. Do you think Joe Philbin can lead the team to success?
Coming from a successful atmosphere in Green Bay, he's seen what it takes in order to be successful in this league and he's trying to instill that mentality into Miami. From what I've seen so far, you can tell he has a very analytical mind because he's always finding ways to gain creative advantages, solutions to fix mistakes, and game-planning to improve on past performances. He led a "mediocre" team by the media's standards to a 7-9 finish and, at one time, almost a playoff berth. Now with upgraded talent and more of his pieces on the team, I definitely believe Coach Philbin can definitely lead Miami to regular season success, postseason success, and a Superbowl in the next 2-5 years.
Next up is David Leal. Turning to the playing side of things, Mike Wallace has repeatedly been labelled as a one-trick pony. Do you think this is a fair assessment of him?
I don't think so, I think in the game there are a lot of players who are victims of the system. For example, looking at the games of the Steelers he usually was used in long routes, but when he was asked to do other things, he showed that he can do a lot more. However, I expect Philbin/Sherman will open the playbook for him and RT17, and use him more like Greg Jennings was used in GB. I expect a flourish of him and RT17 by the end of the season.
Michael Egnew has reportedly seen more snaps come his way so far this offseason. More snaps than Dustin Keller, in fact. Do you still have hope that he can make it as a Dolphin?
The 2013 draft was defined by "raw players" with almost all our picks (with maybe the exception of Jonathan Martin, the only player to expected to be starter in 2012 season), and in the case of Egnew that's be true, as TE he needs to work a lot to fit in to the scheme, but now he has a year to learn the play book, and more important learn the TE blocking technique, are not any doubt about his catching skill, but he need to do more in this offense scheme. I'm not sure if he could win the starting role as TE in Miami, but I expect to he will be in the final roster, and when the season advances, he will be more involve in the game.
Finally, where do you guys see the Dolphins finishing in 2013?
After playing out scenarios in my head, I really think Miami has a good shot to go 10-6 and earn a Wild Card berth. It pains me to say it but I think the Patriots will win the East, however, the gap will be closed significantly as it should be decided by only a game or a tiebreaker scenario. Tannehill should improve upon year 1 with his new weapons and work to stretch the field out vertically but I think the breakout player who will make the most of his opportunities is Lamar Miller from the improved passing game which should open it up for big running plays. The future is looking bright for Miami.
I expect a winning record, something between 9-7 and 11-5, we are in the right path to have a contender team, but not this year, I see the team fighting for a wildcard slot, but we are one step back of the Pats (at least for this year), but we have clearly a better base than Jets and Bills, and more than a half teams of AFC. In the offense the key factor was RT17 and his grow, we will advance further than he increases his game. In the Defense the base are there, the team works hard in this offseason to upgrade the coverage defense, but I expect the defense will be at the side of the offense, or inclusive a little bit better.
Thank you very much to Dolfan00 and David Leal for taking the time out to share their views on the Miami Dolphins. Do you agree with what they had to say? Now it's time to hear YOUR thoughts.
As always, for next week's edition, please comment below by writing ‘I'm in', and be sure to email me so that I can get those questions over to you. We want to hear from you! Next weeks edition is the last one!