Saturday, April 20, 2013

Consider this...


I took a peek at "Confident Ross is all business with Dolphins" http://www.miamiherald.com/2013/04/20/3355383/confident-ross-is-all-business.html earlier today.  Its about the stadium, but I was struck by this comment:

"Well, first of all, the benefits of this, the public is the one that really benefits. As we disclosed in our financials, we don't make a lot of money. In fact, we lose a lot of money."

To which I say: hunh? Think carefully about this statement. Is he saying that he's losing money on the Dolphins?  And if he's losing money, then he must be a terrible businessman. 

And who believes that?  A major sports owner loses money?  Not a chance.

Now if he talking about the stadium and saying that he will lose money in the deal, then why is he intent on doing it?  Doesn't make sense, does it?  Who goes into a financial arrangement of this magnitude and believes they're going to lose money?

That's right, they don't! 

So IMHO, if he's misrepresenting (or perhaps lying about) this, how can we believe any of what he says?

Friday, April 19, 2013

2013 Schedule & Help The Dolphins Raise Cancer Awareness And Prevention



On another topic, as you know the Dolphins are proud to support cancer awareness and prevention both as an organization as well as within our Web Weekend group. At both our Draft Party (April 25) and Fin Fest (April 27) a team of healthcare professionals, including licensed dermatologists, will be conducting free skin cancer screenings as part of the Melanoma Exposed Screen. Protect. Know. Tell. campaign. Last year, Melanoma Exposed screened nearly 400 Dolphins fans for skin cancer and the team hopes to screen even more this year. Melanoma Exposed is an educational campaign led by melanoma advocacy groups and Bristol-Myers Squibb to raise awareness of melanoma and its risk factors.






Pass Defense Key to Fast Start

Kevin Coyle took special notice of our schedule last night. I am not saying he didn't get any sleep but he may have tossed and turned a bit.

When 4 of your first 5 opponents feature gun slingers you take notice.

Week 2: Andrew Luck
Week 3: Matt Ryan
Week 4: Drew Brees
Week 5: Joe Flacco

Wow!

2 on the road, 2 at home. Even Stevens.

If we plan on going to the post season party this year, we can't start out at 1-4.  We are going to need to get out of the gates at least in the middle of the pack at 2-3. And this is a tall order having to face those quarterbacks with those offenses.

I do believe we will be better offensively this year but I would hate to have to win shoot outs with those QBs. We reloaded this offseason but they have plenty of weapons too.   

Which means we are going to need some big stops by our pass defense to walk away from this start with any hope of finishing in the hunt.  We are gonna need sacks, timely pressures and the game changing take aways.

All those free agent signings may not matter as much to our success as how Kevin Coyle game plans to stop those offenses the first 5 weeks.

For this he best get plenty of rest now because he may be having too many sleepless nights starting in September.

Carl Leone
Dolfan since 12/25/1971
Carldleone@aol.com

There will be "NO CANDY" after 8 PM Thursday Night!

Let the word go forth to Spidermen and Princesses alike, that the police tape is going up on my sidewalk at 8 PM for tomorrow night's Holloween Festivities, with a neon sign bearing the words that all generations shall take pause, "NO CANDY"!

That's right.  This year I am saving some bucks by not giving out any candy after 8 PM.

Its not like I am the Holloween Scrooge.  Oh no.  I happen to adore Holloween.  The kids are so polite and thankful.  I like to give out mini bars of Snickers, Almond Joys, Milky Ways and Butter Fingers.  The kids never complain.

But this year will be different.  I am drawing the line at 8 PM.  Even though I adore kids dressed to the T's as their favorite characters, there is one thing I adore even more. And unfortunately for those kids, they are not even a close second.  It's a blow out!

I am sorry but I absolutely love the Miami Dolphins!  More than anything other than my Mom and family.  If my best friend, who happens to be a fan of whomever we are playing that week, needed my left kidney immediately or he would die and the Dolphins were playing at that moment, I would certainly call his Mom and offer to speak at his funeral.

Come tomorrow night, we are scheduled to host the Cincinnati Bengals at 8:25 PM.  So that means at 8 PM sharp, the police tape goes up and there shall be no one within earshot of me.  I will require no distractions.

Yes, I know, I can put some candy outside in a bucket or large tupperware bowl with a sign "Take One".  But guess what?  Then I will hear the kids coming up the walk and, more importantly, they will be able to hear me.

Depending on how this game goes, I could be shouting obscenities at the TV the very moment that adorable Princess reaches for that tempting Snickers bar.  No parent wants their little kids joyously traversing my walkway only to have to grab them and haul them away because they think some nut job lives inside.  Which can actually happen, again, depending on how this game goes.

So for the childrens' sake, I will not give them any treats this year after 8 PM.

Thank God I don't live on the West Coast, because then this game would be starting at 5:25 PM.  Peak Trick or Treat hours commencing at kick off! 

I would have to move.  I kid you not.  Pull up the Van Lines trailer, wheel out the furniture and point her east immediately!

Carl Leone
Dolfan since 12/25/1971  
carldleone@aol.com

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Hopefully this is our schedule!

Tonight, our 2013 schedule will be announced on the NFL Network beginning at 8 PM. This is always a neat show. They start with the first weekend, show the night games and then work their way through the divisions.

The last few years, we have had to go up to New England to finish up the season. And until last year, we went 3 seasons without any 1 PM home games until the middle of October. We need to get back those early home games starting at 1 PM. Nothing like putting our opponents in their dark jerseys with 90% humidity and clear sunny skies. They will be sucking wind entering the fourth quarter.

Finally, I would love to have no road games in the cold. Not that I don't believe we can win in it but why mess with mother nature if we don't have to.

So here is how I would lay out our schedule if I could have my druthers:

9/8  1 PM we host San Diego...dark jerseys, new coaches, new playbook, so lets get them before they get their wheels under themselves

9/15 1 PM at New England...lets get up there early and show them who we are now...I like big road games early while we are healthy

9/22 1 PM we host Atlanta...they are in black jerseys...our uptempo offense combined with the heat will give us an edge

9/29 1 PM at Cleveland...gonna be a beautiful day with no lake effect

10/6 SUNDAY NIGHT at Jets...blow them out early and send their fans home to wake up to even more misery

10/13 1 PM we host Baltimore...this could actually be our home opener on Thursday night since Baltimore will open up the NFL season on the road but I prefer it here.
After an emotional game against the Jets how could you not get up for the defending champs.

10/20 1 PM at Buffalo...I like this game right here...weather will still be nice and since the following week is our bye, lets get in another road division game right here before the bye

10/27 BYE

11/3 1 PM at Pittsburgh...they are not the Steelers of recent memory...they are getting older so right about now, midseason, they should be pretty banged up, especially if they play Baltimore the week before us (that would be a bonus)

11/10 1 PM Hello Jets...welcome to another beat down as Rex starts wondering about his job

11/17 SUNDAY NIGHT we host Cinncinnati...again after the Jets I prefer a tough opponent to get fired up for plus its Sunday Night

11/24 4 PM at New Orleans...they narrowly escaped us a few years ago and since they have a lot to prove after missing the playoffs last year I prefer to see them later than early in the season with a chip on their sholders...plus 4 PM will seem like 3 PM to us

12/1 1 PM we host Carolina...no team is an easy win in the NFL but we could use one of our lighter competitors right about now because next week...

12/9 MONDAY NIGHT at Indianapolis...this was such a great game last year that I believe this will be a Sunday or Monday night matchup no matter when the league schedules it

12/15 1 PM at Tampa Bay...if we have to follow a road Monday night with another  road game then a short grasshopper flight to Tampa is perfect

12/22 1 PM Hi Buffalo...glad you could make it...the key here is to sell tix to OUR fans!! Late season home games become mini vacations for northern fans

12/29 1 PM New England comes to town...What do you mean Brady isn't playing? They haven't clinched anything. Oh, he was lost for the season 7 weeks ago and now we are playing to clinch the division!!

I know there is a tough stretch from 9/29 until 11/3 when we have only 1 home game and 4 road games but we do have the BYE squeezed in. That is the price to pay to open at home and then finish the last 2 at home.

With this schedule, what do you think our record will be? I see us somewhere around 10-6 and 11-5.

Carl Leone
Dolfan since 12/25/1971
carldleone@aol.com

That's just silly

The Ravens won the SuperBowl.  The NFL likes to showcase the SB winner in the first game on a Thursday night.  But the Orioles are home that same Thursday, and due to parking issues, they can't both play at the same time.

And so the NFL in its very finite wisdom decides to have the Ravens open on the road on Thursday and will have a fan fest in Baltimore...without the team.

To me, that seems incredibly lame.  And really dumb,

Why not feature the runners up (the 49ers) on Thursday? And then have the Ravens play in the Sunday Night Football clash?

Oh I know why!  It would make too much sense.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

This and That. Oh and some of That Too.

On the bright side in New Jersey, today is our first true spring day! Just gorgeous out, sunny 70 degrees with a light breeze. Too bad I can't hit the links. I will hit a bucket though.

Monday makes you wonder where mankind is headed. Just a tragic event and so so unnecessary. Anything that needs changing can be discussed. There is no need for an action that hurts so many innocent people that have no say in the discussion or the power to make a change anyway. Why go to those measures?

Only 8 more shopping days until the draft. Every top prospect has been probed and had their check up from the neck up. Probably at a dozen team sites. As exciting as it would be to be a top draft choice, it must be a pain in the ass to have to hop on all those flights and go to all those team offices to be asked the same questions. Do they get to fly first class? Could you imagine being 6-5, 310 lbs in coach? With only one small sandwich?

So Philbin had a pretty good week. Two feathers in his cap!

First, he is named to the Coaches Subcommittee of the NFL Competition
Committee. John Madden is the Chair so he will have the teleprompter. Philbin joins Coughlin, Frazier, Reid, Smith and John Harbaugh at the table. They will meet via conference call to discuss such glaring issues as:
"that ref is horrible week after week"
"how come we gotta go there every december"
"have you guys ever been to the XYZ Bar in XYZ City"
"I hate that hotel, their room service stinks"

Second, Philbin will be speaking at the NFL Career Development Symposium at the Wharton School of Business May 6-8. This is a pretty big deal when you think about it. He will be speaking to candidates for NFL Head Coaching and GM positions. For him to be asked to do this he must be well respected around the league. But will he fly to Philly first class or coach?

Starks is still MIA.  Randy, if you are reading, please put your personal contract issue on the back burner. Ireland isn't going to negotiate with you until at least half the season is over and you better have some stats built up by then. Get your butt into camp, get working, set the tone for a good start to the season and then you will get all you want. But right now, you have no negotiating power. You are locked into a one year prove it contract so accept your situation. As my old boss used to say, "Your raise will become effective when you do!!!"

Only 8 more shopping days! Cannot wait! DVR is all set. I love watching the draft. Switching between ESPN and the NFL Network. Who thinks what about whom's picks and the value of them. Who graded out best by each division and/or conference. The productions are getting better and better every year. The amount of information they get onto the screen in just moments is...well, as we say in Jersey...Forget about it!!!

Carl Leone
Dolfan since 12/25/1971

  





Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Our thoughts are with you.

Monday, April 15, 2013

They are back in the building!

Today was the start of the "voluntary" workouts which could mean some extra money to those players who get workout bonuses.

It was good to hear that everyone showed up, including all the new free agents, except for Randy Starks.  I guess he had some laundry to do.

Must have been very exciting in the weight room this morning. Guys catching up, busting balls. New guys getting introduced around. And the fringe players are probably a little concerned about the upcoming draft and whether they will have some more competition for their jobs.

The coaches were setting the tone for the off-season workouts. A "good to see you  but we have work to do" meeting started it all off. 

Tannehill was chucking some balls to his new toys. Kinda like Christmas morning for Ryan. He has got to be pumped.

Hopefully Grimes left without any discomfort to his Achilles. He needs to be ready for opening day.  

All in all, this had to be a great day at the office for the Miami Dolphins' coaches and players. Just like the first day of school.

There is alot of enthusiasm with the fan base. Everyone I have spoken with is very optimistic about our chances of making some noise in the playoffs this year. Nobody has said we are winning the division but they all think we can and should be in the playoffs as a wild card.

Ireland and Ross are even starting to make believers out of those most skeptical of fans.  A friend of mine, who is also a Dolfan and who would "yada, yada, yada" me when discussing the team the last few years, now has actually begun to have some intelligient discussions with me about the team. So that's a positive.

I would have to say we are off to a good start. Tomorrow is another day of workouts and getting bigger and stronger and faster and hopefully wiser. Which should and better correlate to wins because despite all the good intentions of everyone involved with the team, that is truly all that matters.

Carl Leone
Dolfan since 12/25/1971 
carldleone@aol.com  

What are the Options for Miami Dolphins at #12?

With the NFL Draft only being 10 days away, the question of who the Miami Dolphins will pick at #12 becomes more and more intriguing. With the aggressiveness Jeff Ireland showed in Free Agency, it gives him the flexibility to be able to go many different directions with the first round pick. The top positions of need, in no particular order, for the Dolphins would be TE, OT (LT or RT), DE, CB, and maybe S. Now the question arises, "What direction could the Dolphins go with at pick #12?" Well, I am glad you asked that, because I am here to tell you a couple different directions they could go!

Possibility #1:

With the defensive matchup nightmares TE's in the league are now are presenting to Defensive Coordinators around the NFL, it would only make sense for the Dolphins to draft the TE with the best capability to create those favorable matchups on Sundays and that TE would be Tyler Eifert from Notre Dame. At 6'6" and 251 lbs. and having a 35.5 in.  VJ (vertical jump) and a 82in. wingspan, he is too big for Safeties and CB's to cover, and with a 4.68 40 yd. dash, he is too fast for LB's to cover! Even if he faces a super athletic LB during a game, there is no LB in the NFL who could out jump Tyler Eifert for ball in midair. Tyler Eifert would provide Ryan Tannehill with another explosive weapon in the pass, and with the proper coaching from TE Coach Dan Campbell, could become a proficient run blocker when needed. When paired with Dustin Keller, that makes for a lethal combination that could dominate the middle of the field for the Miami Dolphins, leaving Mike Wallace and Brian Hartline on the outside that much more room to work.

Possibility #2:

In today's NFL, the passing game is becoming feature more than it has ever been. With all the new rules that promote the passing game, Defenses have had to adjust immensely. With all this new pressure on the back end of defenses now, it is critical to have good cover CB's now. With that being said, Brent Grimes (age 30 and coming off an achilles injury) and Richard Marshall (age 28), although good CB's, are not getting any younger. This being known to the Dolphins, CB Xavier Rhodes from Florida State would be a great addition to this defense. At 6'1" 210 lbs running a 4.43 40 yd dash, Rhodes would be a explosive athlete added to this secondary that lacks playmakers that Rhodes could be. With Kevin Coyle, who was the secondary guru for the Cincinnati Bengals before he came to Miami,  as Defensive Coordinator, it should bode well for Rhodes, who has the capabilities to become a shut down corner in the NFL.

Possibility #3:

With the Dolphins upgrading much of the offense in the last two off-seasons (2012 adding Ryan Tannehill and Lamar Miller and 2013 Mike Wallace, Brian Hartline (resigned) Brandon Gibson, and Dustin Keller), it would probably be a good time to upgrade the offensive line that protects Ryan Tannehill. For Ryan to be able to take advantage of all these new found weapons, he is going to need time to do it. Considering Jonathan Martin had a pretty rough year protecting the QB last year, allowing 57 QB pressures, 6 QB sacks, and ranking as the 54th out of 57 Tackles in the NFL. Although it is expected for him to improve greatly from last year, the Dolphins still need another tackle to protect the other side of Ryan. This is where drafting OT Lane Johnson from Oklahoma would be a very good pick. Lane Johnson is a very athletic Tackle (running a 4.72 40 yd dash), who was a former TE in college, who would be able to protect either side of Ryan Tannehill, probably at LT, and would be a welcomed upgrade over Nate Garner at either tackle position. The only draw back of this pick is that Lane Johnson might not fall to #12 and the Dolphins would probably have to trade up to get him. But if he falls to the Dolphins at #12, he would be a great addition to the OL of the Miami Dolphins. 


Other Possibilities:

There a couple other possibilities for the Dolphins at #12 if things do not work out for them. RT DJ Fluker from Alabama would be one option. He could come in and fill the RT position and provide great run blocking for Lamar Miller & Co. DE Ziggy Ansah from BYU might be an option if none of the above players are available at #12 for the Dolphins. Ziggy is extremely athletic, and with good coaching could become a Jason Pierre-Paul type pass rusher with time. But that would be a very risky pick at #12. Finally, OG Jonathan Cooper from North Carolina could be an option. Cooper is a very athletic Guard who is a very good run blocker and can get to the second level on running plays. He is also a capable pass blocker and would be an upgrade over RG Jon Jerry from last year. 

GGG (Give God the Glory)

Be looking for my next article as I discuss which of the Top 3 OT's would be best for the Miami Dolphins.

Have questions or suggestions? Email me at sethAfisher07@gmail.com or tweet at me @PhinsBlogger13