Why Wannstedt Blew It with Gardner | FinHeaven - Miami Dolphins Forums

Why Wannstedt Blew It with Gardner


Pro Bowler
Jul 31, 2002
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Palm Beach
I know some of you are going to flame me for this, but hear me out. As a long time Dolphins fan, I have to be honest and not pretend this all worked out. Lets just stick to the facts:

1. Gardner is a Talent.

No one can argue about this. Good DLine is hard to find and Gardner was and is one of the best at filling the middle. Anyone that thinks that throw off from Carolina is the same talent is just a big homer.

2. It wasn't about his back.

It was never about his injuries. Anyone who says that the Phins were worried about DG's avaliability and could not take the risk that he would be hurt is missing reality. The Dolphins already gambled when they gave DG the contract. That ship has sailed. He was going to eat a huge amount of salary cap no matter what.

After you already are paying the guy, you try to manage him to use him as effectively as possible. This is what the Phins were doing by moving him to End. Cutting him for injuries makes no sense at all.

Before: DG costs money and plays at least some.
Now: DG costs money and plays not at all.

With the added negative that the Dolphins have excellerated the cap hit so that over 6 million counts against the cap next year. It is a financial disaster. 6 million and no one to show for it.

3. Wannstedt blew it:

The bottom line is that Wanny couldn't keep the team together and felt that he had to cut Gardner to keep the team unity.

That's a huge failure for a headcoach. Todays headcoaches have one basic job: Keep the big egos in line so that they perform on the field. Phil Jackson is no great Xs and Os guy, he just keeps them focused on the court. Even JJ, not a great technical coach, but he knows how to handle the players to gety them to perform.

Wanny has Turner calling the offense, and a good defensive coordinator, all he has to do is keep the team focused and together. He blew it.

Remember: Gardner was never a problem when being managed by JJ. It was Wanny's job to keep Gardner on the field.

Bottom Line:

Was DG a head case? Definitely.
Was he causing problems? No Question.
Should the Head Coach have handled him better from the beginning to keep the best talent on the field?

Absolutely. That's why Wanny failed and the team is going to be paying for it for years to come.
Yeah we got 6 mil in dead money next year, but that saves us almost 2 mil compared to what DG,s salary would have been. I would rather choke on that hit than pay DG 8 million dollars next year.

The rest? We will see.
Could you beat this thing into the ground any longer?? You're about a week late, Pinkey.

I could easily counter every single point you made. But what difference would it make.
Before: DG costs money and plays at least some (6 games?)

Now: We have Chester, we have extra cap room, and Jay Williams. I'd prefer to have Gardner plus all the extra's we got but it's not possible. I'd prefer Chester 60% as good as Gardner playing all season with the added cap money we needed to sign rookies and Jay WIlliams than just Gardners 6-8 games.
It was about his back and regretting giving DG the big contract. The fact that he had a questionable attitude/work ethic and that any game c/b his last had 100% to do w/it.

You cannot compare Kobe/Shaq and 12 guys that play both ways to managing a team of 53 guys
I KNOW he wasn't talking about Chester. No way. Chester is the man.
Good point, 39. Basketball and Football are totally different in regards to player management.

And Phil Jackson keeps them focused IN THE PLAYOFFS. Every year, we hear Phil bitching about the Lakers coasting through the regular season.

Your right, you are going to get blasted. Wanny didn't blow anything. He basically did the same thing the Chargers did 2 years ago with Leaf, only they got rid of the problem quicker rather than later. DG is physical beast, but a complete baby. Wanny probably wouldn't have done anything if it wasn't for our true leaders ZT, and JT. The fact is DG is gone, and we are better as a team because of it. I could care less whether it was because of injuries or not.
Also your point about JJ being able to control DG and Wanny not. JJ also ruined Marino's career, and then quit coaching. Is it Wanny's job to babysit, or coach?
I was talking about Williams not Chester. I like Chester. He was a good pickup regardless. I actually like Williams too. I think he is solid, not sure if he was worth a four though. That might ahve been a bit of a panic. I just wish DG was with them.

I know this topic is getting old fast. I said my piece and I'm moving on.

Muck: Thanks for the Titan link. They are a pretty good bunch.
No prob. I'm fiending for ANYTHING in the way of camp reports. Hey, weren't there a few board members heading over there?? God I'd love to get a Dolfan point of view on these sessions.

welcome a-board PhinKev - hope you like here; let us (admins and mods) know if there is anything we can help with.

This was taken from my previous post...

Screw DG!!!
Listen up...DG was an integral part of our team when he was here (healthy or not) make no mistake about it, but he is gone now....he wears a different uniform. I don't give a rats ass what he has to say about our team. He got the pink slip from Wanny for being a disruptive figure to the team and you know what he is clearly demonstrating to everyone that Wanny was right all along; he has shown how disruptive and unprofessional he can be by the remarks he has made and by the way he has conducted himself so far. Sure there have been other players that have gotten in trouble and have been distractions to the team, but I am sure that there was more to it in his case that warranted the type of action that was taken against him. Our vantage point as spectators limits us from formulating any type opinion on why it happened; hence the old saying: "No one knows whats in the pot, except the cook". What those reasons were, I DON'T CARE. My point is that letting DG go was a judgement call by the coach, so only HE knows the real reasons for giving him the AX... and fittingly so... He is the man in charge not DG or anybody else for that matter. Will his absence hurt our team's aspirations for the season....only time will tell. But I do know this, the DOLPHINS are my team and anything they do, wether right or wrong I will support! It's all part of being Loyal. I am in the ARMY and wether or not I agree with what the upper echelon in the ARMY thinks or decides I WILL SUPPORT IT AND REMAIN LOYAL. So if DG wants to bump his gums about my team...go right ahead as far as I'm concearned he is the ENEMY now. So SCREW DG any anyone else that does not support our team!!!
sorry to interrput, but

welcome a-board you too SGT. DOLPHIN - hope you like here; let us (admins and mods) know if there is anything we can help with.

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