Let me end the curious case of Mike Wallace right here, because at least to me... It's an easy one.
NOTE: Buckle up...
Players aren't the only ones who need to start taking responsibility. The entire organization needs to step up and take responsibility for actions.
My argument below is not 100% sticking up for Mike Wallace but I'll state the facts. Wallace has caused no crimes in Miami, he hasn't beefed with his teammates, he has shown he works hard and he does his job. I can't speak for his "mental toughness", and neither can any of us, but the one thing that seems apparent is that he's frustrated.
Let me ask this question... Which true Dolphins fan ISN'T frustrated?
Miami didn't like Brandon Marshall's rap sheet so we shipped him off to Chicago. Miami didn't like Karlos Dansby's defiance so we replaced him with Dannell Ellerbe. Miami couldn't handle Vontae Davis' immaturity so we traded him for lower value then we drafted him forwhile he had sat dumbfounded and wondered what his grandma would think.
Where are we now? Instead of Marshall giving Ryan Tannehill a true #1 WR as a rookie, we handed our quarterback Legedu Nannee, and then wondered why we couldn't judge his progression after year 1. Meanwhile Brandon Marshall instills EXACTLY the big bodied red zone target that Miami is still currently desperate for. I'm a big fan of BMarsh, and thought trading him was idiotic, but he DID have trouble with the law so his image was an issue to some. I get that. (On another note- He has been on record as an amazing teammate and extremely charitable individual since going to Chicago and dealing with his BPD disorder... But that's neither here nor there.)
The other guys? Well we replaced Dansby with Ellerbe who's production has been a third of KD (if that). Dansby was arguably Arizona's MVP his first year back for the Cards, hitting career-bests in tackles, touchdowns and passes defended. Vontae Davis we all know is a top CB in the entire league and just came back from his first AFC Championship game.
Now, as Miami enters their 6th off-season without a playoff appearance, let's look at some of our top needs. LB, CB and red zone WR may very well be atop the list. Hmm, what are the odds, huh?
But if we want to point fingers, maybe we are all pointing in the wrong direction...
What's a wide receiver's job? Mike Wallace is frustrated he is not getting the ball. I say, GOOD! Show me a wide receiver that doesn't want the ball and I'll show you a wide receiver that I don't want on my team.
I get that Tannehill's deep ball is still a work in progress and I get that Mike Wallace's strength is his vertical game, BUT we all saw and were admired on how we thought #11's game had improved and his skill set had expanded early in the year. He was excelling in underneath passing lanes, his comeback routes were improving, and his hands (which were previously his biggest knock), well, they were pretty damn good!
Mike Wallace was the first Dolphin player since Chris Chambers (way back in 2005) to post 10 TDs... And he he did so with a pretty much non-existent deep ball.
So if Wallace doesn't fit the system as the guy you are looking for, then I guess I get it, even if I don't agree with it. But what's the plan? Cut him and go back to square one? We all saw how that worked out with Marshall. This team is so close to contending but also has it's fair share of holes... So why create another one!?
So, you want to play GM and trade him! What team would call another team, knowing they want to trade a certain player, and give them FAIR or GOOD value for him? Even the Raiders can't be THAT dumb. Stop taking the easy way and throwing in the white flag. It's a weak cop-out move and football is not a game for the weak. Players don't respond well to that.
Yes, ideally I'd like all my team's players to have a certain toughness and no-quit mentality, but let me ask you, what exactly is the job of the head coach? Isn't it to get the most out of your players? You don't think all 53 New England players busted their ass every down for their coach last Sunday? I just watched Julian Edelman tell his coach he "would do anything" for him after their big win. Do you think Mike Wallace, or hell, ANY Dolphin could say that?
Miami needs to have an attitude adjustment is 100% correct... But it starts at the top. Great coaches ignite players to be great, great players ignite other players. Soon enough average middle-round draft picks are playing GREAT. The Dolphins need to stop giving up- giving up on players because they don't have the attitude they are looking for and giving up to mold players to be better athletes and overall better people.
'Mental toughness', whatever that is, and whatever it is being portrayed as nowadays, sounds very much like a measurable attribute. But unlike size, or speed, the best part about this 'attribute' is that it sounds as if it can be molded. However, you can more than definitely mold it both positively, or negatively.
Mike Wallace is at the moment the best wide receiver for the Miami Dolphins. Stop paying good money for a good product and selling it for pennies on the dollar. We're Dolphins fans, and we ALL should know the definition of "insanity" by now.
Joe Philbin is the coach of the Dolphins, whether you like it or not. He has a responsibility to do his job as well. Coach, get the most out of your players, including your top receiver! Get Wallace some help and give Tannehill the best weapons to go out and WIN football games. Winning is addictive and I guarantee it is the best remedy for getting players to band together and pick one another up when they are down. You can EASILY weed at the truly bad apples when a team has a strong enough bond.
So in my mind, the curious case of Mike Wallace isn't curious at all. He's got a job to do, just like our coaching staff does during this offseason. Now, let them both go out there and prove to us they can and are willing to do it.