A Ray of Sunshine and Hope

Discussion in 'Miami Dolphins Forum' started by The Goat, Mar 11, 2018.

  1. The Goat

    The Goat Escape Goat Finheaven VIP

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    I know. It's March and we're not close to football. Free agency starts next week, the draft is still a month and a half away, and meaningful football is almost six months out. And here we sit, lamenting a 6-10 season and the loss of a player who is arguably the best slot receiver in the game. It's all doom and gloom, right? Well...maybe not.

    Here are some thoughts for 2018...BEFORE we even get into free agency and the draft. And I'll tell you something right now; I think the Dolphins are going back to the playoffs in 2018. Why?

    1) Almost everything that could go wrong for this team since December of 2016 went wrong.

    Tannehill sprained/partially tore ligaments his knee, decided to go against surgery on the advice of physicians...and rehabbing the knee didn't work. So he had to have surgery. Tony Lippett, arguably the 3rd CB on the team, ruptured his achilles. Their 2nd round draft pick, who certainly looked like he would help the LB corps, blew HIS knee out. So the team brought in Lawrence Timmons to help there, and he promptly lost his mind. A freaking act of God hurricane basically cost the Fins a bye week midseason, and forced a hellish road trip. The offensive line coach showed up on a hooker's Facebook page snorting lines of cocaine. Starting CB Byron Maxwell stopped doing what he was told and was released. Nate Allen missed half the season. Starting RB Jay Ajayi was traded. All of this stupid crap happened, most of it in the space of a FEW MONTHS. And the team only won 6 games. And yet....

    2) There were decidedly things that went right.

    On December 11 of last year, my phone rang. It was my buddy Grek, and I knew exactly what was coming. I answered the phone, and there was dead silence for about five seconds.

    Then: "Dude. What the **** was THAT?" I responded, loudly, "THAT is what happens when everyone shuts the **** up, goes out, and does their ******* JOBS."

    The Dolphins had just finished kicking the Patriots's asses. No, it wasn't as close at the 27-20 final score made it look. That game and the Denver game showed exactly what many people had been hoping for. Xavien Howard arrived as one of the best young corners in the game. Kenyan Drake showed one of the reasons why the Dolphins were willing to part with Jay Ajayi. Jordan Phillips made people look silly at times. Jakeem Grant was integrated into the game plan and paid immediate dividends.

    When people did their jobs and followed the game plan, this team won. And it looked good doing it. And then he asked me, "Do you think they can win out?" I responded, "Dude, I really don't know. This team is so hot and cold with their execution. They could very well LOSE out." And, of course, that's exactly what they did. So....

    3) Why am I hopeful for 2018?

    You can call it "wearing aqua-colored glasses" if you want, and you might have a point. But I'm writing 2017 off as "the year that everything went wrong." And remember what Adam Gase said about the last couple games of 2017? About how everyone was playing for their jobs? Apparently he wasn't JUST talking about the football roster.

    Practically the entire coaching staff was torn apart, and replaced with staff that Gase wanted and was familiar with. The message and mantra is clear: This team did NOT perform and execute game plans as expected, and both players AND coaches are being held accountable. This is Gase's ship, he's got the coaches he wants and is getting the players he wants.

    Will is pan out? I don't know. I'm hopeful. There is a fine line between "Adam Gase doesn't know when he's made a mistake with game planning, and he refuses to adapt," and "The staff and players are not coaching properly and executing the game plan properly, and he's adamant that it's going to work, because when it works, it works WELL."

    Regardless, they're getting Tannehill back, and almost everyone saw what was going on with him before he got hurt. Fans saw it, analysts saw it, and even Gase said, "The game is slowing down for him." They're getting McMillan back. They're getting Lippett back. They've got exciting young players like Drake, Howard, Grant, and Godcheaux. They've got low-cost high-upside players like Anthony, Taylor and Tankersley. They've traded for Robert Quinn.

    Could 2018 be another year of regression from 2017? Maybe, but I don't think so. I cannot possibly imagine as many things going wrong for the Dolphins again. It's just very, very improbable. The key to this team winning is the execution of a plan, and I believe Gase is putting the team in the best position possible to do exactly that.

    At any rate, it's doesn't cost any more to be hopeful than it does to be pessimistic. Without getting all "Shawshank Redemptioney"...I choose to hope.

    Fins Up.
     
    Ray R, tay0365, fininpsl and 32 others like this.
  2. dolfan91

    dolfan91 Starter Donator

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    If they cut or trade Suh, without an adequate replacement, things could get worse very fast. Same can be said about Tannehill and the newest rumor about him. I’m always hopeful, because I’m a fan. But sometimes, like during the 5 game losing streak in 2017, I wondered if things could get even worse. But I’ll admit my optimism is reflected in your post, because like you, I bleed aqua and orange.
     
  3. The Goat

    The Goat Escape Goat Finheaven VIP

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    Oh, we all get down, brother. I truly don't think they would have traded for Quinn if they were looking to burn this thing to the ground. I think this team is a lot closer to being competitive than most people believe. Fixing LB and safety is paramount, but like I said...we're basically getting one LB back for free next year. I view that as an extra draft pick.
     
  4. artdnj

    artdnj Time is Now Finheaven VIP

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    Their ups and downs as a fin fan every year and the off Seasons always the same Groundhog Day
     
  5. Avigatorx

    Avigatorx Sec. 107 Row 2 Finheaven VIP

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  6. SF Dolphin Fan

    SF Dolphin Fan Seasoned Veteran

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    Good post. You've always got to be optimistic because you never know. Things change quickly in the NFL, teams emerge that you wouldn't expect. Look at the Rams last year.

    It's going to take me awhile, honestly, to rebound from losing Landry though. I'll get past it and move on, but he was that player that I thought nearly perfectly epitomized what every football team would want - fire, toughness, dependability, physical, durability and production. The team, right now, isn't as good without him and it opens up another area of need.

    Perhaps, Grant and Carroo will emerge in the slot role. I think Grant has a lot of potential and feel he needed more touches whether or not the team kept Landry. Less sure on Carroo.

    I think we'll see a lot of major changes this offseason, but it still starts with fixing the offensive line. I definitely think moving up from #11 to somewhere around #4 is a big possibility. I think the front office wants to get a quarterback for the future and perhaps jump the Jets to get it done.
     
  7. finmann

    finmann Pro Bowler Finheaven VIP

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    This is not some "Retooling" for sure, many of the moves being made are quite simple, do your jobs and do it my way, or you are history plain and simple. I refuse to believe that a team trading Ajayi and now Landry are supposedly run by a bunch of guys that don't know what they are doing, it makes a good talking point and allows others to release their frustration but to think this organization is somehow stupid is beyond me. I too have hope for the future and believe that Gase is the coach to get us there. Sheading contracts, replacing some expensive vets, getting rid of problem players and changing the coaching staff had to happen sooner or later in order for us to move ahead, many of us called for this and we are finally getting it, if you mad now, wait till next year when other contracts can finally be flushed.
     
  8. BigChief

    BigChief Scout Team

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    Good post. I like what the front office has done. Take a stance. Gase has to be in charge. Management has supported him. I like it.
     
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  9. The Goat

    The Goat Escape Goat Finheaven VIP

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    They very well might, if they want to go after a specific QB. If it's true that they're already looking to move up...before Cousins lands, though, I think the reason to do so would be non-QB related. (In other words, why would we need to hop in front of the Jets if they sign Cousins?) And the only player *I* would trade up for if I was the Fins at that point is Minkah Fitzpatrick.
     
  10. SF Dolphin Fan

    SF Dolphin Fan Seasoned Veteran

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    Fitzpatrick would be awesome. I think if the team moves up, it's for a quarterback though, especially when you consider what the cost in draft picks would be.

    In the back of my mind, I wonder if giving away Landry for next to nothing is a precursor for another deal with Cleveland moving up to say #4? Give us Landry cheap and we'll make a draft day deal so to speak. Probably not, but just thinking.

    As far as staying at #11 the team could surprise and take Jackson or Rudolph. I'd like to see a linebacker there, though, either Edmunds, Smith or Evans.
     
  11. finmann

    finmann Pro Bowler Finheaven VIP

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    Would love to see a LB here, however, Jackson is one exciting player.
     
    kcbrown and SF Dolphin Fan like this.
  12. SF Dolphin Fan

    SF Dolphin Fan Seasoned Veteran

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    Gase's ability with quarterbacks may be his biggest asset/talent. It is exciting to think what Jackson can become. He could be almost impossible to stop in a RPO offense, especially adding his dynamic ability as a runner. He does have a longer way to go than the other quarterbacks, but with Miami he wouldn't have to start year one unless Tannehill was injured.

    I'm warming up to Rudolph as well. I realize part of this is listening to him being interviewed. He oozes leadership and smarts and his tape isn't bad either. He's that player that will go a lot higher than expected IMO.
     
  13. finmann

    finmann Pro Bowler Finheaven VIP

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  14. Spiff

    Spiff Starter Finheaven VIP Donator

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    Maybe the Dolphins do the Indiana-Pacers-trick and while everybody thinks they’re competing for the 1st overall pick they’re instead competing for a division title against the almighty Cavs.
     
  15. psfign

    psfign Guest

    I've been in this mind set most of the year. It's going to be ugly. Don't freak out. But I don't know what to expect from 2018 yet. We'll see how the offseason plays out and how we look in preseason etc etc.
     

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