Saturday, September 03, 2016

You Have Two Years, Mr Suh.

     One thing that the Mario Williams deal shows us is that the Dolphins are thinking short-term on the defensive line.  Williams is a two year signing, meaning that the Dolphins have timed his contract to expire in conjunction with a very important development.
    In 2018, Suh's money moves from guaranteed to un-guaranteed.  Meaning that the Dolphins will be in position to blow up and rebuild if their superstar acquisition has been less super than planned.  The     The Dolphins are all in on Suh- for exactly 24 months.  If he hasn't helped Miami dominate by then, he and Williams will both be cut loose and the team will go out and find a new approach.
     In the end, the Dolphins have effectively traded Lamar Miller and Olivier Vernon for Suh.  Letting OV walk may have been wise, given the contract he received in New York, but the Dolphins only had to resort to that option due to the mountain of cash they have committed to Suh.
    So the message is clear:  Miami wrote you a blank check, Suh.  But it comes with an expiration date.  Dominate or be cut.


Jay Lopez

Why Omar Kelly is full of it.

     Having met Omar Kelly a few times, the last time in New Orleans at the airport, I want you to understand I like the guy.  He is very personable.    However, his reads on players is simply amateurish at best.   Remember how upset Mr  Kelly was over the conditional trade of pass rush specialist, Chris McCain?    The Saints desperately needed help on Defense, a DE pass rusher specifically.    Omar went on and on about how great McCain was, as he felt the Dolphins made a huge mistake in trading a bona-fide pass rusher.   The problem with Chris is that he can't set the edge on run plays, and EVERYONE knows it.  He is a liability against the run.  

    Well the Saints cut him today.    Great read Omar.  Hey Omar.  Remember Paul Soliai?    

Friday, September 02, 2016

Likely Dolphins Targets on Waiver Wire

    Being the photo negative of the Conference Champions is generally a bad way to build a winner, yet here we are.  As we head into cuts, the Dolphins are short at LB and CB, two positions the Broncos have covered with class.  Thankfully our head coach may still know a person or two in Denver:  time to get on the phone?

Corner:  The last corner on the Dolphins roster is currently likely to be Chimdi Chekwa.  Meanwhile, the Broncos are likely to cut a highly talented player (Taurean Nixon) becuase he is too far down their depth chart.  We might not want to wait and see if Nixon falls to us, either.  The Dolphins now have an additional seventh round pick to play with- why not try to deal it for Lorenzo Doss?  Doss is the Broncos CB 4 but would likely be our CB 2 or 3 until Culliver comes back in October.  I'm sure the Broncos like Nixon enough to let Doss go if the price is right....

Linebacker:  We need help.  Currently, Mike Hull likely makes our roster as LB 6. The Broncos are likely to cut a player named Vontarrius Dora who could be a difference maker for us.  Dora could supplant Paysinger as LB 4, and almost certainly would surpass the undrafted Zach Vigil.

Coach Gase:  Please make a call to Denver.  They might even want Jamil Douglas, and wouldn't it be nice to get something back for that panic buy?

A final thought:  Don't be surprised if Ronnie Hillman winds up our RB 4... he's almost certain to be cut in Denver where (you guessed it) they are long on running backs.

Jay Lopez

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

What Was He Thinking?

I gotta wonder if Colin Kaepernick was actually protesting racial issues in America or just angry that Blaine Gabbert could actually wind up with the starting job so he just sat and sulked.

I just don't get it.  I am sorry.

There are bumper stickers and coffee mugs as well as tee shirts and head bands that could be worn to promote the social awareness to your cause.

Just sitting there during the National Anthem isn't anything like sitting at a Woolworth counter and getting spit on or arrested for doing so.

Those kids had guts. Kaepernick has none in my opinion.

I think he is deflecting his stupidity. He has that right.

This is, after all, America. You can be smart or stupid. Everyone has that right.

Many veterans and servicemen paid the price for that right.

I officiate High School football in New Jersey. Before every game our crew lines up, cap in hand over our hearts while the Anthem is played before the game.

At that moment I thank God for sending my soul to America. I could've been sent to some third world outpost without DIRECTV.

Now Kaepernick isn't the only idiot in this country. There are plenty of others who just don't see people and accept them for who they are.

Yes ignorance is abundant in the USA. We have bigots and evil around every corner.

I think most bigots just aren't educated properly. I think if given an opportunity to spend some time with other races the walls that separate them can come down.

Kaepernick's efforts are actually adding another row of bricks. People will be polarized now at sporting events as some sit while most will stand for our Anthem.

What used to be a unifying gesture will now lead to dirty looks, comments about disrespect and I am sure even lead to violence.

He could've bought a hat instead. He could've used so many different avenues to make his point.

But any of those would've required planning and some careful thought.

I don't think he did either.

Phins Up!!!

Carl Leone
Dolfan since 12/25/1971

2016 Over/Under Wins for Dolphins set at...

     As a purist football junkie and having watched every play of every preseason game for every team, I think I have a feel for the good teams at least at this point in the process, which admittedly means very little, since things change pretty quickly in the NFL.  Heck last year, Atlanta was 5-0, to start, and finished 8-8.

     So, even though this is a tad ridiculous, let's predict the outcome of every single game this regular season.  A = away, H = home

Seattle (A) - blowout loss.  Actually, I think if offense gets into a groove early, this will be a very close game  (L)

New England (A) - win easily.  Their defense may be a challenge, but their offense is below average with Garoppollo at the helm. (W)

Cleveland (H) - double-digit win.  Nothing on film scares me.  They have a few playmakers, but overall we are the better team in every respect. (W)

Cincinnati  (A) - 7 point loss.  This was the most balanced, best team I saw in the AFC.  Except for Denver'S Defense, this is from top to bottom the most talented team in the AFC.  They look to have a top 5 defense and a top 5 offense.  (L)

Tennessee (H) - 3 point win.   Tennessee looks better than last year.  That entire division, except for the Colts looks better.  This will be a battle.  (W)

Pittsburgh (H) - 10 point win.  By the 6th game in the season, they may come together, except for a few great plays, they kinda sucked.  Their offense looks pretty good, but frankly our front seven is much better and our secondary is about the same.  (W)

Buffalo (H) - 3 point loss.  I sincerely wish I were wrong, but our Defense does not match up well against this offense.  It will probably be a shoot out (close loss) or a blowout (loss).  Their defense is stout.   (L)

New York  Jets (H) - 7 point win.  It should be a low scoring game, but our offense will score more by wearing out their defense.  (W)

San Diego (A) - 7 point win.  The Chargers do not look good to me.  (W)

Los Angeles  (A) - 10 point win.  The Rams are not very good.  Better on defense, but we should be able overcome easily.  (W)

San Francisco  (H) - 10 point win.  Neither is sanfran.  Could be a blowout win.  (W)

Baltimore  (A) - 3 point win.   Usually, I would fear the Ravens, but they look wounded and beat up.  (W)

Arizona  (H) - 4 point loss.  This one is tough, because we actually look better than they do right now, but that team is loaded with talent, similar to Seattle.  (L)

New York Jets (A) - 3 point loss.  Jets will probably get us here. Second best defense to Denver.   Offense will play better by then with all the chances it gets.  (L)

Buffalo  (A) - 10 point loss.  We simply don't matchup.  (L)

New England  (H) - 6 point win.  We do match up.  We sweep NE. (W)

     So, my over/under is 9 wins - which I say "over."  I know for many of you this is too optimistic.    And, I freely admit I am a bona-fide homer, but I saw what I saw...  ESPN and NFL Network are full of it!







Monday, August 29, 2016

McCain Trade Shows Dolphins Maturing as a Franchise

    As Chris McCain moves on to New Orleans, in exchange for a conditional seventh round pick, I am struck by two things which both bode well for our organization.
    First:  It is nice to see a professional at work.  McCain is a class act, who made the most of his opportunities with the Dolphins and will bring character and class to the Saints locker room as he did to ours.  If only Dion Jordan could have approached his tenure with our team with the same dignity and sense of proportion.  By acting now, the Dolphins have taken care of McCain and sent a message about being a quality partner to players who "do the right thing." McCain has landed with a team that has invested in him; it therefore stands to reason that he will make that roster and be a valued member of their team.
   Second:  It is nice to see the Dolphins being proactive.  While I hoped for more in exchange for McCain, that we are getting something in return for a player we likely would have had to cut feels good.  Too often in the past our personnel department has simply released players without putting anything back in the tank.  It is nice to see the team develop a plan and execute it in a timely fashion.
     Oh- and an added benefit:  McCain won''t be wearing AFC East colors and making statement plays against a franchise that treated him shabbily.  We've all seen that movie a few too many times...

Jay Lopez

Colin Kaepenick

There's a lot of discussion about the 49ers QB, and his decision not to stand for the anthem.

But I'd like to change the discussion a little and ask why we play the anthem - at all - prior to sporting events.

ESPN did a piece about this (see the link below) but in short it's because it's tradition. During WWI, baseball teams chose to pay tribute to our soldiers overseas.

They played the anthem and the did assorted patriotic displays, including have the teams march on the field like soldiers.

All the other things fell away but the anthem remained. And yet, it's weird that no other types of events - shows, plays, festivals, even movies - don't play the anthem.

So my question is: why do we still do it? I'm as proudly American as the next guy, but if it's two American teams playing each other, why play the anthem? An American team will win so it's not "hey look we're better than you"

How about if each team comes up with a fight song that plays to the same sense of pride in your team. It could even include a patriotic overture.

I think the discussion could be redirected into moving away from feeling a certain way about how a player reacts, and instead have a discussion about "tradition" ...

That's my two cents.

http://www.espn.com/espn/story/_/id/6957582/the-history-national-anthem-sports-espn-magazine

Mike's corner:. Every year at this time there's hope

Just as usual the fans of every NFL team are all into the hopeful stage of the year, and who could blame them. I mean their   made some changes and some off the young players are due to step up and have great if not a stellar season. So that means the fans are thinking that a lot of their teams ifs are going to work out. I would like to hear from you, tell me what you think is going to work out for the Dolphins tell me what you think this season is going to bring us loyal fans. Good, bad or ugly, I have been a fan since I was 12 years old that was 1983 and Dan Marino was our rookie QB. The last few years have been really tough to endure no winning seasons, no play offs, a massive collapse at the end of seasons when it counts and play offs are on the line. Nothing personal with our old coach(won't mention his name) but I would have fired him and the GM when the Bully Gate. I've pretty much lost faith and need a shot of good fins talk. I will reply.

Spencer Paysinger and the Cost of Trading Up

    Maybe Jelani Jenkins will be recovered by the eleventh of next month.  Or maybe the Seahawks won't throw much to the running backs and we'll be fine for a week in his absence.  But as we hold our collective breath hoping our linebackers hold up each week, it might be worth remembering how we got here.
    We have been active on draft day, mainly in the form a trading up for apparent "needs."  Doing so has shortened our mid-round selections, leading to a linebacking corp loaded with undrafted free agents and career special teamers.
    Paysinger is the most experienced reserve we have at linebacker, so we likely roll with him.  Like the rest of the Dolphins faithful I'll spout off about his starts in New York (of which I know nothing) and secretly hope Jelani Jenkins responds well to his recovery regime.  But the facts remain:  A shortage of picks caused by our desire to move up on draft day potentially has its price.
    The worst such trade we made was a panic move to try to adapt to the Patriots two TE sets (Dion Jordan.)  In this year's draft, we have moved up for a player we felt we needed (Xavien Howard, who I think we could have gotten had we stood pat- most boards had him in round three.)   Later in the same draft we moved up for a player we just plain liked (Leontee Caroo- a move I actually love.)
    Caroo and Howard may turn out to be great acquisitions.  But it is worth remembering that those upward moves, and the indefensible one for Jordan) came at a price.  This year that price might be spelled "Paysinger."

Jay Lopez