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    • Hayden Fox's Assessment Week 17

      Positives

      * 89 yard TD drive that finished with a Ryan Tannehill TD pass to Mike Wallace. On the TD pass, Tannehill got everyone on the same page and threw, with great anticipation, to Mike Wallace. The throw had nice touch as well. The drive mixed things up well, including moving the pocket.
      * Lamar Miller. He had 73 yards on 17 carries. He ran hard and seemed to get better with the more carries he got.
      * Pass protection. After a bad week versus the Bills, they gave up no sacks and RT had time to throw.
      * 3rd down offense and defense were not great, but not awful...6 of 13 for the offense and 6 of 15 for the defense.
      * Koa Misi had a TFL on a 3rd and short play in the 1st half. He read the play well and got the tackle behind the line of scrimmage.
      * Brent Grimes was excellent today in coverage.


      Negatives

      * Lost Turnover Differential 3 to 0.
      * Ryan Tannehill turned in a clunker in a big spot. He was 20 of 40, 1 TD and 3 INT's. He was very inaccurate early in the game. While some of the picks were not awful decisions, the team needed more from their QB and he did not deliver. He missed a wide open Mike Wallace by overthrowing him down the sideline. If completed, Wallace would have gone for six. On a 3rd and long, Tannehill scrambled up the middle, but he went into the baseball slide and was marked just short. The 4th down play was stopped short a play later. RT needed to know where he was on the field and pick up the yards needed.
      * RT threw a pretty ball to Mike Wallace in the corner of the end zone. While he seemed to be interfered with, Wallace simply should have made the catch. A crucial miss in a tight game.
      * Rishard Matthews had a big drop.
      * Mike Pouncey penalties
      * The defense was terrible against the run. They gave up 154 yards.
      * The pass rush was nonexistent for the second straight week.
      * Dannell Ellerbe missed tackle at the end of the half as Geno Smith scored on a QB draw.
      * Phillip Wheeler in coverage.
      * Off his first Pro Bowl selection, Brandon Fields was terrible today. His first punt was a shank and netted only a few yards. He had 3 touchbacks.
      * Brian Hartline's knee injury was a major shake up for the football team. He was very important to the offense.
      * The team did not finish the half. They allowed the Jets to score a TD with seconds left.
      * Upon a Nick Folk miss, the Dolphins had some momentum and could not do anything with their next possession.
      * The offensive play calling was not very good for the most part. Some plays stand out more than others. The 4th and 1 in the 3rd quarter around midfield is one. A handoff to the Charles Clay had nowhere to go. With about a foot to go, perhaps a QB sneak was in order or something to the outside. They ran inside and got stopped short. The Mike Wallace screen on 3rd down in the 2nd half was completed well before the sticks. It was of awful design and had no chance of succeeding.
      * Kevin Coyle was terrible today. His calls were off and never created anything that got momentum going for his side of the ball. The game plan itself was questionable. The defense did not solve their run stuffing issues. They lost contain on Smith all game. They did not sniff the QB with their pass rush. At some point, Coyle should have tried to manufacture a pass rush, but he never did. Bad day for Coyle.
      * While we talked about the infamous 4th and 1 call and what led up to it, the game was still a one score game at the time. It was a desperation call on Joe Philbin's part to go for it. The right call was to punt it and pin the Jets offense back. Perhaps under duress, the Jets would turn it over. All the call did was give more confidence to the front-running Jets.
      * In a game where energy, emotion and guts would be necessary, the Dolphins seemed to lack any of those traits. The team needed to be primed and ready to go for a huge game and they simply were not up to the task.

      Overall Assessments

      * I need to take this spot to mention a few things. First of all, I was accused of being "negative" leading up to this game. I simply pointed out that there were some reasons why I was very concerned that the Jets would win. One was the respective attitudes of each team. The Jets, I felt, were going to play loose, while the Fins were going to be tight. I think that happened Sunday. Between the Jets running Wildcat plays and handing off to Sheldon Richardson for a TD, they were playing very free and easy. The Dolphins on the other hand, seemed tight. RT was off on many throws early, Matthews, Clay and Moore all had drops. The defense seemed a step slow, seemingly not wanting to give up a big play...yet, they never attacked and forced the Jets into bad plays. I also thought that there were tough match ups to consider. While some here did not want to acknowledge it, the fact was the Jets had the advantage on the offensive and defensive lines. Finally, I was concerned because I did not think this was a mentally tough Dolphins team this year. Again, I was killed for that thought. Yet, today, in a situation where the team needed to snatch a playoff spot...where they got all the help they needed throughout the league...they played small. I make these comments not to say "I told you so", but to point out that each week there are concerns versus each opponent. I attempt to point those out and find a solution to them so to have an idea how the Miami Dolphins can win a game.
      * What a brutal finish to the year. The Fins needed one of the final two games and they came up very small. The Fins lost their last two games 36-7. 7 points in the last 8 quarters.
      * How big was Ed Reed's tackle on Rishard Matthews? His shoestring tackle saved a TD and who knows how the game finishes if Matthews scores.
      * The only game the defense did not create a turnover happened to be today's game. Ironically, the Jets had the most turnovers in the NFL...yet the Dolphins could not get one.
      * Short yardage situations were such a struggle today as it was all year. The team has little physical presence inside and from its RB's. Not signing a true lead blocker was a huge mistake.
      * I am so tired of South Floridians or former Dolphins "coming home" and getting over on the Dolphins.
      * Only the Dolphins can take mega Vegas odds in regard to winning a playoff spot and not come through.
      * This year, the Dolphins were given so much help across the league. Not just today in terms of getting into the playoffs, but other teams losing at the right time versus the "right" opponent. They also had injuries that benefited them from opponents. Yet, the Dolphins could only muster a .500 record.
      * It is exasperating how many flags were throw versus the competition, yet the officials confer and pick up the flag. Why was the flag tossed in the first place?
      * This team lacks leadership. It lacks it from the head coach and the best players of the team. The last two weeks was the time for the Dolphins to play their best football, to come out attacking, to be aggressive...to play without regrets. Yet, the team did none of that. They actually played their two worst games of the year in the most vital points of the season. That poor play has to be answered for.
      * Changes will be made, but where. The status quo is not going to cut it. However, I will say this: I do not think Joe Philbin will get the ax. Steve Ross likes him and Philbin is "his" guy, his "hire". However, keeping Phlbin and making changes to other parts of the organization can be dangerous. Ross will have to find a GM with prior ties to Joe Philbin or agree with the new GM that Philbin stays on next year. That will easily cut down the talent pool of GM candidates. Secondly, people want Mike Sherman out. I cannot defend Sherman's performance. However, once again, if Joe Philbin stays, he comes back as a lame duck of sorts next season. Going into '14 season, Philbin will easily be one of the coaches on the hot seat. If that is the case, what inspiring O.C. is going to want to come to Miami? Philbin will have his pick of the "second tier". The Dolphins are in a really difficult spot right now.
      * What is Joe Philbin's exact strengths exactly? We were led to believe he was a sound offensive mind, but that has not materialized in his first two seasons. He is obviously not a master motivator. He leaves a lot to be desired in terms of his management on game day. Outside of continuity, I am not sure what is so valuable about Joe Philbin returning as the head football coach of the Dolphins.
      * What hurts so much about today's loss is you never know when you will have the opportunity to get into the playoffs. There are some emerging teams in the AFC and it will be more competitive next year. The conference was down this year, however. Making the playoffs was there for the taking. I want nothing more than to see our Dolphins be relevant in January. It is daunting to think of climbing that "mountain" again next fall. This season was so emotional in so many ways. Today, was a really tough loss that will stick with the franchise and fans for a long time.
      This article was originally published in forum thread: Hayden Fox's Assessment Week 17 started by Hayden Fox View original post
      Comments 23 Comments
      1. ProStyle's Avatar
        ProStyle -
        Yup this was the year. The talent acquisition over the years failed us, if you believe that luck favors the prepared. We were not ready talent wise for the gifts of this season--division and bye were there for the taking. The man in charge of talent must be sacrificed so that the team can move forward.

        Philbin maybe OK, but the staff overall is incompetent which is obvious from their resumes.

        Low scoring and conservative passing play maybe OK for a truly dominant defense or a strong running team, but not for this team. We do not have a passing game to rely on even tho we are a passing team. Nothing on this team is fixed for a playoff run, from the GM, to coaches and schemes, QB, down to the kicker.
      1. ForksPhin's Avatar
        ForksPhin -
        Your point about never knowing when chances to make the playoffs will come around was the most salient point in your post. Every season has its own challenges. You can think you have a great team in September, and then injuries to key players can destroy a season. When the opportunity is there, it must be seized.

        Ross should understand this...and take some action.
      1. CONVIGLIONUS's Avatar
        CONVIGLIONUS -
        Good Post. With this loss to me it confirms this group with Philbin and company just simply cant get it done. With all the pieces falling into place for your team to make the playoffs and you don't make it and lose it in the fashion that the Dolphins lost it in is just inexcusable. As long as Philbin is our coach we will not win.
      1. WVDolphan's Avatar
        WVDolphan -
        Gotta hand it to Hayden. I cant speak for everyone, but I owe a bit of an apology for killing him this week on his predictions and his Philbin bashing. Hayden was pretty much spot on. The rest of us looked like the clowns this team always makes us out to be.

        Joe Philbin blows. He is not a leader of men.

        Also, there are quite a few snakes in this organization.
      1. sharp's Avatar
        sharp -
        The timely break up of wallace passes i don't think have to do with wallace, if anything wallace should complain more to the refs... he gets hit 1 second early, how the hell is he supposed to catch the ball? Don't accept the fact, bitch your ass off if your getting cheated by the DBs..
      1. dolphinheel's Avatar
        dolphinheel -
        Thanks for all your input this season! I didn't think your overall theme was negative at all. The fingerprints were all over this loss after last weeks no show. In the end I think it will be a new GM. The understanding will be that the Philbin will have every opportunity to prove himself as the incumbent to the new GM in his interview, but in the end Philbin will not be retained. This has been discussed in an earlier thread I started. Ross will shrug his shoulders and say "I tried" but in the end he knows Philbin was a mistake. This will also give him some cover and the GM will be the bad guy. Remember the Martin mess is still not over, and none of us know the details. If Philbin, Ireland and Richie are gone, so is the issue. Believe me Ross wants this to disappear, and so do the other NFL owners.
      1. Hayden Fox's Avatar
        Hayden Fox -
        Quote Originally Posted by WVDolphan View Post
        Gotta hand it to Hayden. I cant speak for everyone, but I owe a bit of an apology for killing him this week on his predictions and his Philbin bashing. Hayden was pretty much spot on. The rest of us looked like the clowns this team always makes us out to be.

        Joe Philbin blows. He is not a leader of men.

        Also, there are quite a few snakes in this organization.
        No hard feelings. We all want the Fins to do well. If it makes you feel better, I would have taken weeks of abuse on this site in return for a win today.

        I know this sounds sappy, but I am kind of sad right now...not like a loved one being sick or someone leaving for battle abroad type of thing, but from an athletic stand point. I am frustrated and do not know when we will see an important Week 17 again.
      1. BSQ's Avatar
        BSQ -
        Great post Hayden. I was one of the ones that said something about negative mojo but your fears were well founded. It's not the loss today but the manner in which we lost. Both sides of the ball, all damn day. This offense has to completely change! New OC is a must. New linebackers to replace Wheeler and maybe even Ellerbe. Something wrong with the scheme on D where we went from a great team vs. the run to not so great. This loss will be felt for a long time. I knew how huge the game was and was so hopeful of a W. We didn't show character, we didn't even really challenge and we let our hated adversary steal our thunder and boot us from the playoffs at home. This won't go away soon. Mark my words.
      1. John Biello's Avatar
        John Biello -
        Quote Originally Posted by sharp View Post
        The timely break up of wallace passes i don't think have to do with wallace, if anything wallace should complain more to the refs... he gets hit 1 second early, how the hell is he supposed to catch the ball? Don't accept the fact, bitch your ass off if your getting cheated by the DBs..
        perhaps if wallace wasnt such a giant ***** and actually played a physical game with an aggressive physical attitude he might benefit from a call occasionally
      1. Valbon8's Avatar
        Valbon8 -
        Negatives:

        Philbin's trademark move


        Sent from my SPH-L720 using Tapatalk 4
      1. goonies's Avatar
        goonies -
        Quote Originally Posted by WVDolphan View Post
        Gotta hand it to Hayden. I cant speak for everyone, but I owe a bit of an apology for killing him this week on his predictions and his Philbin bashing. Hayden was pretty much spot on. The rest of us looked like the clowns this team always makes us out to be.

        Joe Philbin blows. He is not a leader of men.



        Also, there are quite a few snakes in this organization.


        Tim tebow is a leader of men! I want tebow, tannehill is too awkward for me as a qb. Like I said be4 tannehill will be great backup qb for the next 10 yrs, nothing wrong with that.
      1. Awsi Dooger's Avatar
        Awsi Dooger -
        I appreciate this thread all season long
      1. Hayden Fox's Avatar
        Hayden Fox -
        Quote Originally Posted by WVDolphan View Post
        Gotta hand it to Hayden. I cant speak for everyone, but I owe a bit of an apology for killing him this week on his predictions and his Philbin bashing. Hayden was pretty much spot on. The rest of us looked like the clowns this team always makes us out to be.

        Joe Philbin blows. He is not a leader of men.

        Also, there are quite a few snakes in this organization.
        The other thing is during big games/weeks, I never take anything personally. We are "competitive" in our own ways.
      1. TheJetsBlow's Avatar
        TheJetsBlow -
        You turned out to be spot on Hayden. You said all week you were afraid we'd play tight and we did just that. Great post. Here's hoping Ross cleans house.
      1. Hayden Fox's Avatar
        Hayden Fox -
        Quote Originally Posted by TheJetsBlow View Post
        You turned out to be spot on Hayden. You said all week you were afraid we'd play tight and we did just that. Great post. Here's hoping Ross cleans house.
        Unfortunately, this team is getting easy to read.

        I am just not sure where we are at this point.
      1. pags77's Avatar
        pags77 -
        Ireland has to go first, he has had enough time to proove himself and has not been able to stock this roster with any depth. The only star he has brought in is Cam Wake, and he had an off year. His drafts have been average, his FA signings have sucked, "Ellerbee and Wheeler were huge disappointments." He has created .500 talent. Our weakness in the trenches on both sides of the ball was glaringly evident and that is a personel problem. Our RB were poor all year with pass protection and production.

        The coaching is terrible. We can't develop anybody and are consistently out schemed. The only good things I saw out of Philben was his success on challenges and his ability to keep the team together after the Martin scandal. Both OC and DC were not good. If this is the best that you can do in the last 2 games of the season against the Bills and Jets, you need to look for another job.

        Lastly, you got to look at the QB position. Tannehill did improve this year, but his lackluster play hurt an offense that was already anemic. You can't miss as many deep shots as he did this year. A rookie QB should be brought in to compete, along with keeping a veteran like Moore as a safety net.

        Gotta can the GM and both coordinators. Philbin stays only if new GM feels he can work with him.

        We are a mess....again!
      1. Hayden Fox's Avatar
        Hayden Fox -
        Quote Originally Posted by pags77 View Post
        Ireland has to go first, he has had enough time to proove himself and has not been able to stock this roster with any depth. The only star he has brought in is Cam Wake, and he had an off year. His drafts have been average, his FA signings have sucked, "Ellerbee and Wheeler were huge disappointments." He has created .500 talent. Our weakness in the trenches on both sides of the ball was glaringly evident and that is a personel problem. Our RB were poor all year with pass protection and production.

        The coaching is terrible. We can't develop anybody and are consistently out schemed. The only good things I saw out of Philben was his success on challenges and his ability to keep the team together after the Martin scandal. Both OC and DC were not good. If this is the best that you can do in the last 2 games of the season against the Bills and Jets, you need to look for another job.

        Lastly, you got to look at the QB position. Tannehill did improve this year, but his lackluster play hurt an offense that was already anemic. You can't miss as many deep shots as he did this year. A rookie QB should be brought in to compete, along with keeping a veteran like Moore as a safety net.

        Gotta can the GM and both coordinators. Philbin stays only if new GM feels he can work with him.

        We are a mess....again!
        You create more of a mess by your idea. A shotgun marriage with a new GM...no! Where are you going to find quality coordinators that will work for a possibly fired coach next year?
      1. pags77's Avatar
        pags77 -
        The Jets got a pretty damn good OC in Mournigwig with a lame duck HC, didn't they? Not saying the GM needs to retain Philbin, we could get rid of him as well and I would be happy with that.
      1. bird33's Avatar
        bird33 -
        i agree with everything you said but how in the hell was wallace going to catch that ball in the endzone when he was clearly interfered with before the ball got there? people seem to blame wallace for everything. the reason we're home in january is because the qb has some serious accuracy issues, not to mention pocket awareness and a pus** demeanor! all he had to do was hit wallace on that 2nd quarter bomb and we win this game going away.
      1. spiketex's Avatar
        spiketex -
        Hayden - Thanks again for your thorough analysis every week. Like many others, I'm very low tonight and really surprised that we showed so little heart. The injury to Hartline showed how much Tannehill depends on him. The play calling was disgustingly predictable and the Offense yearns for more creativity in this department.
        I expected the team to put last week's effort behind them, with so much to play for, but we got zilch. You correctly predicted that we would be flat, lack effort and totally out-coached. The biggest positive from today was that we won't have to listen to Dan Dierdorf as a TV commentator next year. I seem to detect his pleasure in every Dolphin mistake. Auf wiedersehen Herr Dierdorf.