The King’s Speech: The Dolphins Make Me Cry

 

By: Jeff  ‘The King’ Horowitz

In the 1994 hit single Only Wanna Be with You, Darius Rucker sang the lyrics: “I’m such a baby, ‘cause the Dolphins make me cry.”

Well – if Dan Marino throwing for 320 yards and 4 touchdowns every Sunday was cause for tears, Chad Henne must be making ‘Hootie’ feel….homicidal? Such is the life of a Miami Dol-fan.

Over the past 10 seasons (2001-2010), the Miami Dolphins have zero playoff wins, a 15 loss season, 5 different head coaches, and more starting Quarterbacks than I care to name.

Actually – trying to name all the Dolphins starting QB’s since Marino retired is a fun (though nauseating) game I play with my friends, so here goes….

Jay Fiedler, Damon Huard, Ray Lucas, Brian Griese, A.J. Feeley, Sage Rosenfels, Gus Frerotte, Daunte Culpepper, Joey Harrington, Trent Green, Cleo Lemon, John Beck, Chad Pennington, Chad Henne, Tyler Thigpen, and finally….back to Chad Henne.

That’s 15 different men who started at quarterback for the Dolphins over the past 10 seasons, with a goofy looking, big-eared Jew having the most success all the way back in 2001.

"Yes! With all these wins I know the city of Miami will embrace me and I'll be here forever!"

 

The past 5 years have been especially painful:

2006: Nick Saban opts for damaged goods in Daunte Culpepper and his bum knee over Drew Brees; Dolphins record: 6-10.

2007: Cam Cameron selects Ted Ginn (and his entire family) with the 9th pick of the draft; Dolphins record: 1-15.

2008: ‘Big Tuna’ Bill Parcells comes aboard, selects an O-lineman with the 1st pick of the draft (Pro-Bowler, Jake Long) over franchise QB Matt Ryan.  Dolphins Record: 11-5, 0-1 in Playoffs.

2009: Chad Henne era begins; Dolphins Record: 7-9

2010: Dolphins “Football Czar” Bill Parcells quits, just days before season starts; Dolphins record: 7-9.

Total record from ’06- ’10 : 32-48;  0 Playoff Victories.

Most “experts” have the Dolphins finishing last in the AFC East in 2011; below the Patriots, Jets, and even the putrid Buffalo Bills. Every year, with delusional optimism, I predict the Dolphins to win 10-11 games and make the playoffs. Every year I’m very, very wrong.

My prediction this year: obviously the Dolphins win 10 games, and make the Playoffs.

Am I being delusional once again? Very possibly – but I doubt it, and I’ll tell you why.

"Ok lets get this over with so I can go home and watch The Kardashians"

Improved Offense

Quarterback: I’m a firm believer in allowing a young quarterback to develop and get better with time. This will be the year that Chad Henne proves to everyone that he can succeed in the NFL. Henne will also benefit from not having a senile 70 year old Offensive Coordinator mumbling plays in his ear while swigging Metamucil.

Receivers: Wide receiver Brandon Marshall’s daily cocktail of Zoloft, Lithium, and a side of electro-shock therapy should make him a little less bi-polar, and return to elite status. Brian Hartline, Devon Bess and rookie speedster Clyde Gates should excel in new OC Brian Daboll’s high-octane offense.

Running Backs: Newly acquired scatback, Reggie Bush has the ability to be the most explosive playmaker in Dolphins franchise history, if he can stay healthy. 2nd round pick Daniel Thomas is a hard-nosed bruiser (though he’s injured now), and Larry Johnson looks like he may just have a little something left in his tank.

O-Line: Not really the team’s strong suit, which is kinda baffling because Head coach, Tony Sparano came here as an offensive line specialist. I’ll concede that injuries killed the line last year, so a healthy group featuring Jake Long, Vernon Carey, and rookie Mike Pouncey will get the job done.

"Henne hit me! Right in the hands!"

 

Top-Ranked Defense

Vonte Davis and Sean Smith have the potential to be this generation’s Sam Madison and Patrick Surtain.

Cameron Wake had 14 sacks last season, and has established himself as a top-flight pass-rusher in the NFL. Dude is so humble, he still drives a $10,000 Acura that he bought in 2004.

Paul Soliai and Randy Starks are excellent run stuffers. 1st Round pick Jared Odrick is finally healthy and looked great in the preseason.

Jason Taylor is back (yet again), and according to reporters – cannot be stopped by the O-Line in practice. Does this mean he can play at an elite level, or is our O-Line just that bad? I’ll probably take the latter on this one, but it’s great to have JT back nonetheless.

"What did you say about my pink gloves and shoes?"

 

Coaching

The Miami Dolphins coaching staff got a lot younger. Former offensive coordinator Dan Henning is out, heading to a life of BINGO and shuffleboard. New OC Brian Daboll brings in a high octane, pass-heavy offensive system that will exploit the talents of Brandon Marshall and Reggie Bush.

On the Defensive side, former Dolphin great Bryan Cox was hired as a special “Pass-Rush coach”. No word on whether former QB Scott Mitchell will be brought in as the team’s new Flea-Flicker coach… but if they hired a pass-rush coach, it might be worth a shot.

Head coach Tony Sparano is on the hot seat, and he knows it. As with Henne at QB will, I believe Sparano makes the climb to the next level of coaching, and have a better grasp on the game management issues that have plagued him the past 3 seasons. In fact, just the other day, Brandon Marshall tweeted, “Every time Coach Sparano makes a speech, I get the chills.” That sounds like good news, but I’m pretty sure Marshall’s “chills” are just a side-effect of the Zoloft.

"Hey Chad, its called 'Not-Sucking'. Look into it"

 

General Manager

The Big Tuna is collecting $4 million from the Dolphins to sit on his couch, eating Dove ice-cream bars in Purchase, NY, so Jeff Ireland is now calling all the shots. Ireland hasn’t called anyone’s mother a prostitute lately, so he’s already off to a better start than last season.

All in all, I believe the Dolphins are greatly improved from last season, and are finally… FINALLY moving in the right direction.

And- there’s no better way to prove that, than to go out and beat the New England Patriots at Sunlife Stadium on Monday Night Football to start the season.

We shall see. Either that – or we go 7-9 again, and poor Hootie blows his brains out.

 

"Dan please come back. You're still the best we've got!"

One Comment

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