Friday, March 25, 2011

A Parcells sighting

After nearly 3 years of being invisible in south Florida - except for appearing on some national talk shows and helping the Jets of course - we had a Parcells sighting. Well sort of.

We heard that Bill "I'm in it for myself, and I'm a wanker" Parcells will be hosting a 90 minute pre-draft show on ESPN. Now remember that while he's "done" with the Dolphins, they are still paying him $4mil this year.

So, in effect, the Fins are paying him to share his (bogus) knowledge with anyone who would care to be bored by his nonsensical phrases for an hour and a half. Good. Maybe someone else will listen to him and draft the next Pat White or Chad Henne - and the Dolphins might actually get a decent pick at QB this year.

Or not, of course.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Not unexpected

Cap'n izzy told us he wanted a more explosive offense and the dolphins changed coordinators and there was a buzz.


And today the bootin' bull told us that in spite of the owners request, his team will remain run-first because "that's my nature."


And I'll keep calling em out as pinheads. Because that's my nature.


This team couldn't beat my grandmother.

Sent from Dave's iPhone
...see? There's an app for that.

The lockout

I read Roger's comments yesterday (including the one where the owners
don't plan to use replacement players). I read Stephen Ross' comments
where he talked about the financial picture and how its common for
owners to take money off the top before distributing funds (maybe,
except that there's only a few sports, and its not common in those).


I also caught several other articles that discuss the lockout, the
stance by the players, and the stance by the owners.


And then it hit me: the owners never came to an agreement among
themselves about how to revenue share. They've talked about it, but
they still don't have a formal plan. Some owners want to leave the
status quo, while others want to create the haves and have-nots. I
believe there is much dissension still among them - but they're smart
enough to keep that private.


And along comes the Goodell comment. Because they have a lockout,
there can be no replacement players. So its very oddly out of turn.
Unless of course there is something else happening. What if the
lockout were terminated by the courts, or the owners suddenly had a
change of heart?


So why was there a lockout? The storyline says its to try and get the
players back to negotiations. But I strongly believe its because the
owners are scared of each other. If there was no lockout, teams would
be free to maneuver in some ways. Any player who is not part of the
union (or was not part of the union) would be fair game to sign to a
contract - with essentially no salary cap some teams could try and
glom onto certain players, thus creating an unwinable situation for
the owners (there would be a complete imbalance) - and the players
would have to either file more lawsuits or capitulate. And man
wouldn't that outcome be fun?


My two cents for today.

Chad Henne's comments

A few weeks ago, Chad "Schmoe Montana" Henne told us that he was being fed the new playbook by Brian Daboll.  

I told you that it was likely the Dolphins would be fined for this "improper" contact.  A number of my readers took exception saying it was a non-issue, and there was no foul.


Yesterday, the league did confirm that the Dolphins were fined for violating the league rule on contact.  While neither the league nor the Dolphins made much of it, it does show (once again) that the Fins don't have a clue.  How could they not know it was against the rules?


Citing the specifics, the NFL said:
There have been rules in place for years that govern what is permissible prior to the start of the offseason program. It is the interpretation of Article XXXV of the CBA. Before the offseason program begins, generally around March 15, players are permitted to use the Club's facilities on a voluntary basis subject to the following rules:
 
(i) such players may not receive per diem payments or workout bonuses of any kind and may not be paid or reimbursed expenses for travel, board or lodging during this period;

(ii) such players are not permitted to participate in organized workouts, practices or meetings of any kind;

(iii) the Club's strength and conditioning coaches may not direct such players' individual workouts, but may supervise use of the weight room to prevent injury, correct misuse of equipment, etc.;

(iv) such players may not be directed or supervised by position coaches during this period.

then why even bring it up?

"We have not had any discussions or consideration of replacement players.  It hasn't been discussed, it hasn't been considered, and it's not in our plans."

So says the commish during a conference call.  If that's the case, then why mention it? 

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Laughable

Armando Salgeuro wrote an article in today's Herald where he quoted
Stephen Ross as saying he's committed to the team and its leadership.
He drew a broad conclusion that Sparano and Ireland have job security,
and can build the team for the future.

I find that laughable. Cap'n Izzy (Ross) has shown that he gets
infatuated easily with the big names. Its about glitz and glamor and
star power with him. The Bootin' Bull (Sparano) does not have that.
And if the team were to go 8-8 this season and ticket sales fell off,
I don't think the good Cap'n would hesitate to pull the trigger on a
change.

I guess there really isn't much to write about, is there?

And one other amusing side note: The Furious Enigma (Ireland) said he
was committed to building this team. And that would be most unlike
his former boss/mentor - one Tuna who was committed to building the
Jets while on the Dolphins payroll. (no, I couldn't help myself; I
had to make that dig)

Monday, March 21, 2011

A followup comment

One of my readers (ranadicus) posted a comment that was very well articulated, and I wanted to share it and respond as a full post:

Anybody who talks about millionaires Vs billionaires is missing the reason for the work stoppage.

My biggest question, and one that has yet to be answered, is what exactly do the players want? In '87 they wanted free agency, a fair opportunity to recieve honest value for their services. In 2011 do they just want more money? Do they think they're going to get a court ordered raise?

Remember it was the players who, by their own admission, walked away from negotiations not the owners. Owners who as business men negotiate deals all day every day. As business men that's all they do, that's their life. Why would they suddenly stop now? To go to litigation in the liberal court system that's given players everything they have ever asked for? That's what the owners wanted? That's their master plan?

Look, there are two ways to make a name for yourself, by building something up and by tearing something down. The labor stoppage is because DeMaurice Smith is the latter. Just ask Takeo Spikes who has already said the plan is to return in August. We haven't had a hearing yet and they already have their return planned?

This is about D-Smith milking the labor shortage for all it's worth before the players abandon him when they start to miss their game checks. Don't be surprised to see the players suddenly come back to the table in August for no apparant reason, regardless of the court rulings, and sign a similiar CBA to what they already had. Also, don't be surprised to see D-Smith running for an office somewhere (likely the U.S. House) in 2012.


It is true that D-Smith has intentions to run for office. He said as much before he became the NFLPA grand poohbah. He saw this as a stepping stone, and certainly he has made his mark; whether that's good or bad is debatable.

I'd also like to remind everyone that the players as a group aren't necessarily the most well-informed about what's going on. They play the game and get paid, but they might not know (or care) about the bigger picture. The NFL was saying the players got 70% of the pay in the last CBA. The players wanted to make it more fair, but an independent audit showed that they actually get less than 53%. The owners - being businessmen - took some chargeouts out of the mix to get to 70% and the players were "surprised" to see the actual number. I'm not convinced that they know what they want at this point, other than to make the same amount and be taken care of after their playing days. Their leadership is leading them down a path, be it good or bad.

The business owners want to keep their status as the people who bring us football and make lots of money and get tax breaks and what not; and they keep their books closed.

Clearly, there's a lot of political grandstanding happening. The courts have already been asked to step in, and its only a matter of time before congress inserts themselves into it. You have people on both sides of the union argument (its good! its bad!) stating their opinion because the NFL has (or had?) a union and its a hotly debated topic overall these days.

I've heard several players say that they're glad for the break. No "voluntary" workouts this year. I have no doubt that there will be no more than one game missed. But in the meantime, football is not the escape that it should be. Sport is supposed to be fun and take us away from the "real world," and yet this year it is part of the real world. And I find that disturbing.

I miss the triteness of who is the better QB - Fiedler or Huard, and what's the story between Jimmy and Danny and will Ricky be in a tent in Australia?