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Thread: Greg Cote: A case can be made to defend Jeff Ireland

  1. -1
    phinatic1399's Avatar
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    Greg Cote: A case can be made to defend Jeff Ireland

    You might not know it, but the Jeff Ireland makeover is underway. The Dolphins’ general manager, the most vilified current figure in South Florida sports, is seeing his public brand gradually refashioned, the persona of incompetence fading by degrees.
    Let me pause now to give you time to shred your newspaper in incredulous anger, punch your computer screen or yell at the dog what an idiot I am.
    I grant you that supporting Ireland in this market ranks up there on the popularity scale with loving Fidel Castro or advocating the Heat trade LeBron. I get it.
    And I know it was just a month ago that Ireland’s image hit a new nadir when a fan confronted him with the suggestion he “fire himself” and Ireland — maybe understandably but nonetheless unwisely — called the guy an “a—hole.”
    I also understand that Ireland will never win over all his critics. The infamous “Is your mother a prostitute” question of 2010 Draft prospect Dez Bryant alone echoes in infamy as a default go-to for anyone determined to attach Ireland’s name to buffoonery.
    The anti-Ireland crowd in turn has become a cottage industry steered less and less by rational thought, a stubborn mob bound to carry on undeterred by nuisances such as victories, draft picks borne out or other indications of success.
    So in the spring somebody hacked Ireland’s Wikipedia entry to describe him as “the most incompetent human being in the history of existence.”
    The recent exchange with the fan spawned “Fire Yourself” T-shirts. You might even see some Sunday as the Dolphins host St. Louis.
    Miami New Times has a regular feature it calls the “Fire Jeff Ireland Watch” (because there is no law against pandering).
    And now on YouTube appears a new video excoriating Ireland to the tune of Eminem’s My Name Is” a parody somewhat clever but containing all the truth and fairness of a political attack ad.
    Well, timeout, people.
    Is Ireland’s Miami track record really that bad to deserve all this animus?
    No. Can you handle the truth? Or, allowing for honest difference of opinion, can you at least handle an interpretation of the truth that invites a fresh look at Ireland?
    Start with rookie quarterback Ryan Tannehill. This was Ireland’s huge gamble with the No. 8 overall pick, and the kid looks like he will be really good for a long time.
    Remember when Dolphins fans were chanting Kyle Orton’s name? Ireland could have bowed, been popular and signed the then-available free agent. And remember when later so many fans clamored to sign Matt Flynn?
    Well, Flynn went to Seattle and couldn’t beat out rookie Russell Wilson. Orton is a backup in Dallas. And Tannehill looks more and more like the right choice for Miami’s future in what was the biggest decision of Ireland’s four years as GM — the last two-plus with final say over personnel.
    Coach Joe Philbin — a gamble in that he had never been a head coach — also looks increasingly like a solid hire. That’s Ireland, too.
    Free agent running back Reggie Bush, in his second season, unquestionably has been a smart signing. That’s Ireland.
    Linebacker Karlos Dansby and guard Richie Incognito have been productive additions. Ireland.
    Sacks leader Cameron Wake? The GM had a hand in mining him out of Canada.


    Center Mike Pouncey, the not altogether-popular 2011 top draft pick, is gradually supplanting Jake Long as the most consistently dominant force on the line. Ireland.
    Koa Misi, Reshad Jones, John Jerry, Jonathan Martin and Jared Odrick are other current starters drafted by Ireland, along with prominent reserves including Daniel Thomas, Chris Clemons, Jimmy Wilson, Nolan Carroll and Lamar Miller. Ireland had a voice in drafting Sean Smith and Brian Hartline, too.
    This isn’t to nominate the guy for NFL executive of the year, just to offer fair balance to the almost cartoonish vitriol heaped on him by so many. I have criticized Ireland plenty when warranted. For example, it is on him that Miami lacks a premier, No. 1-caliber wide receiver to ease Tannehill’s progress.
    But, moving forward, there are two primary litmus tests to judge Ireland.
    One is the unfolding track record of his two biggest hires, Tannehill and Philbin.
    The other is what Ireland does after this season with all of those stacks of chips on his table. Because of trades Miami now has the most 2013 draft choices of any team, including five of the first 100 picks. And because of the salary-cap situation Miami figures to have around $60 million to spend in free agency.
    That puts Ireland in a position to either really make his mark in a positive way, or to reenergize his critics.
    The Dolphins actually have a pretty solid foundation today in that they run the ball and defend the run very well. I put the team’s biggest offseason needs as 1) an impact wide receiver, 2) a cover cornerback, and 3) a pass rusher.
    The 2013 draft should offer at least two or three first-round receivers led by Tennessee’s very speedy 6-4 Justin Hunter, who has drawn comparisons to A.J. Green. Free agency also will be ripe with wideouts. They will include Pittsburgh’s Mike Wallace and Green Bay’s Greg Jennings.

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    Hayden Fox's Avatar
    At the end of the day...

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    1972 Dolphins LogoMike Wallace 11Cam Wake 91Tannehill 17Dolphin
    Ireland is not off the hook with me because this team is severely lacking depth. Let's see how the season plays out before Ireland gets a "hall pass".
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    uk_dolfan's Avatar
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    He is heading in the right direction.
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    datruth55's Avatar
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    2013 Dolphins LogoCam Wake 91Tannehill 17
    Disagree with the most villified figure in South Florida sports...that should be Jeffrey Loria, unequivocally, hands down, the worst owner in all professional sports.
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    phinatic1399's Avatar
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    Ireland is not off the hook with me because this team is severely lacking depth. Let's see how the season plays out before Ireland gets a "hall pass".
    Same here, lets see what he does this off-season but we are heading in the right direction
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    Ireland is OK in my book as long as they don't let him choose who we draft in the 2nd round.
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    Cote credits him going back prior to Parcells leaving saying "he had a hand in." Cote should apply the same rule to the failures prior to Parcells departure. He also left out the failures in FA and the draft. Bad assessment on Cote's part.

    Ireland should have been fired with Sparano but unfortunately wasn't. Now that we have a good coaching staff and QB in place, it's looking like Ireland will get a pass. I'll hold my opinion on his future until the end of the season.
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    uk_dolfan's Avatar
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    Galactic Empire medalManchester United FCPS4 ControllerCam Wake 912013 Dolphins Logo
    Failures in free agency? You mean a handful of low risk minimum wage veterans all of which were replaced? It isnt like he handed tens of millions to a bust like Flynn like so many fans demanded.
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    Heinegrabber's Avatar
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    JI will get a pass because the franchise is healthy. We have building blocks in place and the ability to get more. We are competitve in our division and on the field. Although I hate the **** out of JI we are in better shape than lets say the Browns,Jets,or Bills. We are not the class of the league but far from the worse.
    Last edited by Heinegrabber; 10-11-2012 at 10:57 AM.












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Gift received at 05-21-2014, 12:20 PM from DisturbedShifty1972 Dolphins Logo
    Quote Originally Posted by uk_dolfan View Post
    Failures in free agency? You mean a handful of low risk minimum wage veterans all of which were replaced? It isnt like he handed tens of millions to a bust like Flynn like so many fans demanded.
    This again. Who?





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