Friday, October 13, 2006

In all seriousness

I would like to take a moment to pay tribute to my *other* grandmother who
left us earlier this evening. She was a bit of a free spirit, and spent her
life around show business...For years she was the entertainment coordinator
at the hip hotels on Miami Beach during the 1950s. She hobnobed with all
the celebs, and had a great time doing it.

"Thanks for the memories"...

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Good stuff

There's an article in the Sentinel about former players, and how they want
to get back into the league. They mention former Dolphin Terrell Buckley
thusly:

The former Florida State standout was taking correspondence classes from the
University of Florida to finish his degree and had started a sports training
company.

Ummm, yeah, he was a Florida State Star who didn't finish, which isn't that
unusual at any university. But, he's now taking correspondence classes at
Florida? Isn't that considered sacriledge by anyone who ever attended
either of those schools?

Updates

Joey has been named the starter again this week. And basically "until Nick
decides otherwise."

Marty Booker has a left shoulder injury and is out for "a while" meaning
that Derek hagan has a legitamite shot of actually catching a pass, since
they need someone other than Wes Welker to catch some. (please note that I
do not expect Chris Chambers to step up his game)

Travis Daniels has an unspecified knee injury and will miss some time.
Here's to hoping he's not gone for long!

Jason Allen update

This week, Jason Allen once again played only special teams. Nick had said
he wanted to get him some playing time, but, alas, that didn't work out.

So, Allen still has no tackles.

I did hear Allen on the radio the other day, doing an interview. Now I know
that people can get nervous when the red light goes on and they're on the
spot...and I've never met the guy, so I can't say this for sure...but he
sounded, uuuuhhh, how to put this nicely? Like he was not a rocket
scientist? Too vague? Maybe a reference to a tool shed?

Monday, October 09, 2006

What does that mean

Saban announced Harrington as his starter today. Then, he went on to say
that (according to ESPN) "Daunte Culpepper will enter a rehab-type program
designed to help restore some explosive movement in his surgically rebuilt
right knee."

So, he started 4 games and then had to go into rehab? Yeah, I guess the
Wal-Mart parking lot didn't work out too well, after all.

Daunte's row with Saban

The talk around town is that Daunte and Saban had a heated exchange on
Friday about something, and then, the next day, Daunte was benched in favor
of Joey Harrington.

We here at Dave's would like to believe that the argument was about whose
was actually the best Dolphins website. The exchange probably went
something like this:

Saban: I'm tellin' ya, Dave's Bitchin' is awesome, a-ight.

Culpepper: But, Phins.com won the best overall site again this year, so its
better.

Saban: Better than Dave's Bitchin?! Never! I loved that piece about me and
Ricky having pizza [and which is available under running items]..it was so
funny. And whoever did the voices was fantastic.

Culpepper: coach, Phins.com is more news oriented. They talk about the
team, and have great writers.

Saban: Well, if you don't like Dave's Bitchin' then I'm going to put you on
my list of "ain't gettin' it" and benching you.

Culpepper: What?

Saban: Well, you see its like this...[a 5 minute story
ensues]....understand?

Culpepper: So I'm still starting?

Saban: No. Joey?

Joey: yeah, coach?

Saban: What's your favorite Dolphins site?

Joey: Dave's Bitchin. I love his wanker of the week. Sure hope I'm never
one!

Saban: See, Daunte, Joey "gets it" so he's starting this week, a-ight.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Rules, shmules

New England faced a 3rd and 8 from the Phins 22 with about 10 minutes left. The score was still 13-10, Pats.

Brady throws long to Gabriel at the goal line on the right side of the field. Will Allen has the coverage. It appears as though Allen is in good position. The ball goes beyond them both. Then, in comes the flag.

Allen is flagged for pass interference.

And this call was simply wrong, in spite of what Dierdorf or anyone else will tell you. And here's why: Allen turned his head to look for the ball. And more importantly, he was not touching Gabriel in any way. Yet, Gabriel had his arm around Allen's mid-section, in an apparent effort to stop Allen from getting away, or possibly to push off.

I'm going to try and find a screen shot to share on this one, because the referees were just wrong. It should have been pass interference on the Patriots.

Key plays of the day

There were a number of plays that were odd on this day. I don't believe that any of them in particular were the reason Miami lost, but together, they impacted the outcome.

Let's start with special teams:
  • First, Mare slips and misses a FG early
  • Later, Mare simply shanks one
  • Then, you had a bad snap that caused Jones to drop a punt. What's odd is that New England was only rushing 4 against Miami's 8 blockers. The Dolphin players seemed so non chalant about the play that 3 of the 4 guys were in on Jones, and 6 guys were simply standing around. That's just pathetic.

    On defense:
  • Will Allen's interference call stood out (see my rule notes)
  • Will Allen also let a key first down happen in front of him

    On offense:
  • Harrington threw a ball that the db made a good break on. If I'm not mistaken, the pass was to Chambers, and he made no effort to try and get to the defender and break it up.
  • Then, he threw a ball that was tipped and intercepted. Welker was the intended receiver who tipped it, the db was actually covering Chambers. Chambers made no effort to try and come back to the ball, break it up, or otherwise change the course of the play. Then, after the interception, Chambers ran *away* from the flow of the play. Where was he going? To get his lunch?

    Coaching:
  • Nick claimed to have learned how to throw the flag, but clearly he did not. On a play that Chambers may or may not have caught near the sidelines, Nick argued with Chambers for a moment, then pulled out the flag. He started to throw it, then pulled it back in. The players reacted with disgust at the result (no challenge). I'm guessing he figured the refs wouldn't see it.
  • Patriots 20, Dolphins 10

    I admit: I can't figure this team out. Their offense is anemic, and can't score more than 17 points in a game. The defense, meanwhile, has only allowed 28 (to Pittsburgh), and otherwise has kept it under 20.

    ...and so the team is 1-4, in spite of some good performances (particualrly on defense) and in spite of a 4 yard per carry rushing average. Sure, "bad luck" and some questionable coaching decisions are at least partially to blame.

    Do I think they're the worst team? Hardly. They're bad, or they wouldn't be 1-4, but they're still within a game of both the Jets and the Bills.

    Okay, so Miami didn't start this week with a fumble or a sack on the first play. Instead, they were driving the ball pretty effectively for a short time...then Ronnie Brown coughed it up, and the Pats took a lead they would keep for the afternoon.

    Still, Miami hung tough. It was 13-10 for a long, long time in the game. Miami had a couple of opportunities to take the lead, but couldn't seem to seize the moment. I'd have to say that mid-4th quarter, when Miami recovered a turnover, there was a moment when I thought they had a chance. Harrington dropped back to pass and threw it long - Mularkey clearly intended to strike quickly after the turnover - but slightly overthrew Chambers, who appeared (to me) to be out of position.

    And then, a bit later, Miami's defense was stopping the Pats time and again. But, Brady threw long and Will Allen was flagged for a hold that gave the Pats a 1st and goal at the 1. A quick TD put the game out of reach for Miami's inapt offense.

    After all, its only Saban's second year...

    Bill Belichick first coached in Cleveland, from 1991-1995. His won lost
    totals went:
    6-10, 7-9, 7-9, 11-5, and finally 5-11 before he was run out of town. He
    was with Bill Parcells at the Jets for a few years, before jumping to coach
    the Pats in 2000. He went 5-11 the first year, and was nearly run out of
    town.

    But, he returned to win the superbowl in 2001.

    Remember that he inherited a pretty good 8-8 Patriots team from Pete
    Carroll. There was immediate churning of the roster, but he started off in
    a good place, and now everyone believes in his system.

    Nick came to the Dolphins last year, and inherited a very bad Dolphins team.
    He churned the roster and got to 9-7. Yes, this year, he's off to a very
    bad start, but what does that mean? He's a bad coach? I dont think so. He
    has made some blunders as the coach, sure, but you can see some good things
    in this team.

    A few players are not playing well in key roles. There have been some bad
    breaks, unlucky calls, and unfortunate bounces of the football. They have
    been in every game they've played. Just look at the final scores. The
    defense has played well enough, but the offense is not producing points.

    It would seem that *most* of the players believe in the system. We'll see
    how they perform the rest of the year.

    Two things I noticed about the defense

    New England's defense wraps up tackles at the point of attack. Miami, not
    so much.

    New England's dbs are always active, and around the ball. Miami's dbs, not
    so much.

    Take the interception by Samuel in the 2nd quarter. He was in great
    position around the receiver, and broke on the ball as soon as it was
    released, and came up with the pick. Will Allen had the coverage on 4th and
    1, and played it soft, and kept the receiver in front of him. AND, he was
    busy watching the play develop behind the line, rather than watching the
    receiver. Result? The receiver was wide open and made an easy catch for a
    5 yard game.

    Yeah, there's some correction needed by this team...

    Ya had to wonder

    ...was it just Nick playing mind games with Bill? Or was there something to
    it? Bill regularly mocks the NFL's requirement that injuries be reported by
    placing Tom Brady on the injury list with a right shoulder injury and
    listing him as "probable."

    Nick similarly listed Daunte as "probable" with a right shoulder injury this
    week.

    And then to start the game, Joey Harrington came on the field.

    We wonder what's up with that?

    A little off

    Saw an interview with Channing Crowder on the Sun-Sentinel site. I loved
    this question and answer:

    Q. I heard you're quite the adventurer?

    A. We used to catch alligators 5-6 feet, tie them up, take a picture and cut
    them loose. It's illegal, so we can't show any pictures. We'd hunt boars
    with dogs. Send the dogs to find them, take them, wrestle them and tie them
    up.

    ...that's just *a little* odd, doncha think?