I remember the talk during last year's regular season & then leading up to the wild card game. Word was we had a weak schedule, a weak division except for "them," and even the games we won were very close. Not to mention a first year coach with not a huge discrepancy in the previous years roster.
Listening to NFL analysts, former coaches & players, lifetime broadcasters, I couldn't help but consider their opinions to have merit. I didn't like it, but when I support a team I do not like to be blind or ignorant to the problems they might or obviously do have. So I made a change. When the game comes on, I turn off the volume. I don't listen to any NFL shows during the week, the hour or hour & a 1/2 pregame shows; I don't play Fantasy FB any longer, and steer clear of the RED ZONE. Safe to say that I am MORE than BEHIND the TIMES when it comes to your typical NFL fan.
These are all choices for yours truly. In other words it allows me to enjoy the game so much more!! I know this because I have played Fantasy FB. I have watched the RED ZONE. And I have spent time listening to all the so called experts during the week & before the games on Sunday. I have nothing against folks that play Fantasy FB, and in fact love to hear about how they are doing!! It's just something that interferes with MY cheering for the Dolphins.
This very well could be situational?? i.e. or e.g.(??) Let's see: I'll start from 1990 and list each year we made the post season; 1990, 1992, 1994, 1995, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2008, & 2016. 11 out of 27 years & the majority were in the 90's.
What I mean by situational is that the Dolphins have only made the post season 4 times in the 2,000's. When the broadcasters do speak of them it is normally not in high regard. I'm not disagreeing with all of their commentary. For instance in 2008 when that QB for "them" was hurt for the season, and Miami used Chad Pennington to tie/win the division. It is almost as if we are made not to forget that fact. If Brady wasn't hurt, forget about it!! But yes, percentages say that NE would have won that year.
My issue is with the reliance by broadcasters on these percentages. Other than 2,000, 2,001, 2,008, & 2,016 Miami has been mediocre or much worse. When they are spoken about on one of these shows it is usually about how they can be beat, positions where they are weak, if they lose out what draft position will they have & who do they need. Will their coach be retained, how many years does it take to build an offensive line? So few of these VERY LIMITED time wise commentaries focus on anything positive. And yes, I understand there has not been a lot of positive to focus on. But I already know that and it's so darn easy to pick apart a bad team.
I've never listened to a derogatory speech about Miami's pass defense and then said to myself: "GOSH, he's right! I never thought of that!"
I mentioned this before in a piece. Somewhere during the past year this feeling started to pick up steam. Now, after the Thursday Night debacle, I am flirting with the feeling that all I felt was delusionary.
What I felt was that Gase was not only using the 4-week pre-season as a sort of feeling out of your team. But he was also using the first 5-6-7 games of the regular season as a secondary pre-season. I think it may sound crazy or just an excuse or feeling of a die hard fan as I look at it.
There is a bit of support for this opinion; I'll start off by throwing in the Baltimore game(if I don't I have to except that game as a Dolphin effort and it was just so unbelievably embarrassing, inept for a professional FB team); TJ McDonald, Ted Larsen, Parker; Play calling; Offensive Line; 7 inter-conference games. I don't want to stretch it farther than I have. e.g. not like Ted Larsen's injury could have been predicted and used for this theory.
OK. Terrible game against Ravens, and the other 6 games were pretty ugly as well. Still, I'm not ready to throw in the towel and I CAN'T possibly see how we can play worse. No matter how tough the schedule is!!