Adam Gase Calls a Losing Game

With about 10 minutes left to play in the second quarter, the Dolphins offense scored a touchdown.  It would be their last offensive touchdown of the day.

Adam Gase had just watched Jay Ajayi shake off a rough start against a formidable Jets run defense and score on a gorgeous 20-yard touchdown run on our first drive.   Gase then watched Ajayi and Damien Williams rush down the field again.   He watched Ryan Tannehill hit Williams on a nice, floating fade pass.  He watched Tannehill execute a quick dropback and then immediately fire it to Dominique Jones for our second touchdown.  When was the last time Miami scored two touchdowns on its first two drives?

Apparently, Gase didn’t like all the success, because he immediately changed things and never went back.

After Jones’ touchdown, Gase started call plays like it was September again.

Tannehill was dropping back 7 full steps again.  He stayed right in the middle of the pocket.  Gase stopped calling rollouts.  He stopped calling quick passes.  He stopped calling options of any kind.  He benched Ajayi at the end of the first half.    Instead, he decided to repeatedly call deep-dropback passes, and the offense didn’t score again.  And he went back to the steady over-use of 5-wide formations.

Again, because rushing the ball and rollouts and Jay Ajayi and bootlegs were all so unsuccessful for us the last two weeks.

As I always say, this is not rocket science.   If a play works, stick with it.   If a play gets us in trouble, then avoid it.  Gase finally used this common sense approach the last two weeks, and he saw the dividends, as we got two wins.

So it’s baffling and frustrating to suffer through a game where he abandoned that philosophy 5 minutes into the second quarter.

Why did he bench Ajayi right before halftime when we had the ball around midfield? Why did Gase thumb his nose at successful logic and start calling plays that doom us to failure?

And make NO MISTAKE:   the Dolphins’ offense failed today.

If not for 2 horrendous interceptions thrown by Ryan Fitzpatrick (Thanks, Ry!) and a wonderful kickoff return for a touchdown, then Gase’s stubborn mistakes would have cost us the game.   Jordan Phillips of all people comes up with a pick, and we start a drive deep in Jets’ land.  3 and out.   Not just a 3-and out, but a miracle that the Jets didn’t score on the Pick-6 that Tannehill tossed right to a Jets DB.  We should have lost this game, and are extremely lucky to come out with a win.   The offense didn’t play well enough to win, and that falls on Gase’s play calling.

It didn’t take long to see the old Ryan Tannehill again.  Yes, he is moving around in the pocket better, but he shouldn’t be in the pocket to begin with.

On this play I’m talking about that shoulda been the pick-6, it called for Tannehill to drop back seven strides, stay in the middle of the pocket, spin around, and quickly throw a one-yard screen pass.  Because Jay Ajayi had been such an immense failure the past two weeks, Gase decided to call this play.   Because Tannehill sitting in the pocket always works out so great for us, Gase decided to call just that.  It’s dizzying trying to figure out why Gase doesn’t use the effective plays instead of the garbage he called after the second quarter.

A little later in the game we faced a 3rd and one with a chance to ice the game.   Thinking that Jay Ajayi isn’t good enough apparently, Gase called a straight 7-yard dropback pass.  Tannehill threw a pass to Jones that was either going to be incomplete, or else caught and then Jones tackled immediately without getting the first down.  Horrible execution of an even worse play call.   Miraculously, the Jets linebacker Julian Stanford tackled him before the ball was there, and Gase was bailed out again.

One of our field goals was forced because on third and short, Gase called a 5-wide alignment and then tried a short pass…again after making Tannehill drop back 10 yards.

As we discussed in our chat room, a QB needs to be effective from inside the pocket after a normal dropback.  But not every play.   And not when sooooo many other plays are yielding such incredible results.    Can’t figure out why Gase is too stupid to go back to the effective stuff.

The Dolphins have certainly lost their share of games they shoulda won, but this is definitely a game we won that we shoulda lost.  Adam Gase reverting back to the predictable garbage plays that got us into a 1-4 hole is a very scary concept.    I’m sure most Dolfans are happy with the result, but I’m furious at how we got there.

Except for a few more stupid penalties, our defense manned up today and was able to overcome all of Adam Gase’s incorrect decisions.   Congrats to Bobby McCain and Phillips for each’s first career interceptions.

By the way, It’s time to bring in a few punters for tryouts.   Matt Darr has been costing us field positions battles all year.   Something’s wrong with his concentration or something else is up this year.   I can’t remember a guy fumbling twice on the same play, but Darr now has that dubious distinction.

And yet somehow, despite that disastrous play and despite Gase calling awful plays, the Dolphins persevered.



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  1. I was a little worried about how the Dolphins would play after the week off. You’re correct in everything you pointed out Admin. But sometimes the football Gods smile down on your team and they eek out a when.


      1. Hey Gay, why do you shout so much? Is it because you’re a tiny man with a big mouth? Got beat up a lot in school didn’t you?

        You try to sound like a big man on some internet site but in reality you’re just a scared of your own shadow little boy who always wanted to know how it felt to be tough, but running from a fight is all you could muster….huh baby boy?

      2. Hey Gay, I mean Jay, can you give us some more of your crystal ball game predictions and impeccable wisdom concerning the Dolphins? You know, like three weeks ago when you wrote:

        “What’s the difference this year is finished anyway. They need to use the rest of the season to try and develop some depth.”

        Wow Gay, I mean Jay, you’re so knowledgeable.

        1. The season is finished you DUMBASS. Drinkin the kool aid again, moron!! LMAO

          Ross has NEVER had ONE winning season and neither has TannePuke! You getting excited because we beat the lowly Jests? YOU ARE DUMBER THAN I THOUGHT PUNK!!

          1. Hey Gay, I mean Jay, Veterans Day will be here soon and I know you’re a staunch supporter of vets, just remember this, you’ll be honoring me too.

          2. Hey Gay, I mean jay, what’s the matter, are you worried your constant Dolphins bashing montage may end up making you look like “The Little boy who cried wolf?”

            1. Author

              I’ll be the first one to say I was wrong if Gase continues to right all the wrongs. But never forget one thing…as fast as Gase can correct certain things, people like Stephen Ross will do things to set us back two steps.

              1. Ross has spent a half a billion dollars remodeling the stadium. Ross fired Philbin like you wanted. Ross is not a player on his football team, ya know.

                Will there ever be a vote of confidence from you for Ross Admin?

                1. Ross sucks. 9 years without ONE winning season. The worst owner in sports. GET A CLUE DUMBASS!!

                  1. Only a true idiot would think that the only criteria for being a worthwhile owner of a pro franchise team is how many winning seasons you have under your name.

                2. Author

                  Phil, I will give Ross credit if and when things get turned around.
                  Ross gets no credit for firing Philbin, because he waited too long, PLUS he hired him in the first place.
                  As I point out many times, the new stadium does not help the football team. A Super Bowl bid for 2019 does not help the Miami Dolphins. Speaking to kids in Michigan about how bad bullies are does not help the Miami Dolphins. Hiring Gase MIGHT have helped us, but too soon to tell. I promise to give Ross proper credit if we turn it around.

  2. Admin your nuts. Literally any time something doesn’t work it’s the coaches fault. I’ve said it before and I’ll keep saying it every NFL offense runs straight drop backs, it’s literally the bedrock of any modern NFL passing attack. Just because tannehill sucks at reading pressure and defense it becomes all gase’s fault. Ignore the fact that players who have always slacked are playing with intensity. Ignoring the fact that back to back games Miami has run the clock out which under philbin never happened. Gase has changed the entire culture on this team, dropped players that slacked and finally got a functional offensive line. What do you want to do run Ajayi 40 times a game and have him get hurt

    1. Author

      @Zach. The proof is in the pudding, my friend. The evidence is overwhelming. The facts speak for themselves.
      When Gase starting calling the straight dropbacks, we stopped scoring. Period. And that’s the Dolphins Truth.
      No, I don’t want to see Ajayi get hurt or overburden himself. There are hundreds of pass formations we can use on passing downs. But the straight dropback with 5-wide receivers cannot be one of them (not yet anyway).
      And yes, we ran out the clock….but only because the Jets gave us a gift via a pass interference penalty. Otherwise we were about to punt. I know you want to blame Tannehill more than Gase, and that’s fine. There’s some truth to that. But I can’t let you defend Gase’s formations, which only got us a couple of field goals in the last 45 minutes of game time.

      1. I’ll give it to you that gase is stubborn with his play calls and that can hurt the team. But receivers get open on those plays tannehill just never finds them or is always one second to late. I’m just saying overall the coaching is much better than last year simply because the players play with a sense of urgency and heart. Once this team gets a real NFL quaterback the offense will light it up. And I’m not talking about some superstar almost any starter in the league outside of Houston, Cleveland, and the jets and bills would be better

        1. Author

          “I’m just saying overall the coaching is much better than last year ”
          Absolutely no doubt about that.

          One thing I will never forget is the day the Dolphins were eliminated from the playoffs in December 2014, the year before last. On that day of elimination, Ross gave Joe Philbin a contract extension.

          A reporter asked Cam Wake if he heard about Philbin’s extension. Wake kinda smiled and said, “No, I didn’t hear that yet”…always a team player. But at the same time, you could tell he was crushed. He was already downcast because they had just been eliminated, and couldn’t hide his sadness at hearing the Philbin news.

          Anyway, now it’s a lot different. The players do want to play hard for Gase, while they didn’t want to play at all for Philbin.

  3. Hey guys I want to be the ghost of christmas past and ask about that terrible decision to let Lamar Miller walk in free agency. Funny I havent heard much about that lately.

    1. Author

      I wanted to have both Miller and Ajayi. Just like it was last year. Imagine these guys backing each other up. Damien Williams has been good this year, but I don’t know how he’d hold up if Jay were to get hurt.

    2. Well if Ajayi doesn’t get hurt and continues to be productive I think the front office comes out looking ok on this deal.

      To date

      Carries yards AVG TD
      Miller – 153 637 4.2 2
      Ajayi – 108 646 6.0 6

      1. Author

        Agreed. I wonder if the front office saw something great in Ajayi and knew that Miller was therefore expendable, or did they just get lucky, LOL

  4. @Admin

    I think what is going on with Gase and his play calling isn’t that he keeps going back to his “Old” ways just to be stubborn.

    I think that Gase has a playbook that he has tried to install but Tanehills lack of development has not allowed him to do that and once he saw it up close for four games he had to change ways and impliment a diffrent playbook that Tannehill was more comfortable with.

    So now we see the Dolphins out in the lead yesterday and I don’t think gase “wen’t back to his old ways” in that he started calling a bad game. (Not that a bad game wasnt the effect) I think once he thought he had the game in hand he went to his “Original” playbook and tried to see if he could get Tannehill and the offense to the “Next” level.

    I think in his mind the offense needs to catch up to his playbook but they arn’t there and he is going to force feed it when he has the opprotunities to see if any of its sticking yet.

    I know you hate this but I think your going to see a lot more of it. Also I would caution against throwing gase under the bus. Remember we did that in week 3 and man did this guy turn things around and quick. So maybe we ride this out and see where it gets us. (Like we have a choice….lol”

    1. That’s exactly what my point is. Tannehill just isn’t good enough to run gase’s offense. New quaterback will change everything. I mean tannehill has prolly the best run game in football and a consistent oline these past 3 weeks and still struggles.

  5. Tannehills 15,460 passing yards are third-most EVER in any QBs first four seasons, trailing only two QBs who’s names are Peyton Manning and Dan Marino.

    Furthermore in three games this year where Tannehill was sacked a combined 16 times his QB rating was 72.5. In the last 3 games he was sacked only 3 times for a QB rating average of 94.2

    Add to that no QB ever in the NFL has played under more HC or More OC or more offencive schemes in 4.5 years then Tannehill

    So no he hasn’t developed completely yet but we can win games with him and I think he can still get better.

    Although I have all but boycotted Greg Cote at the Herald (Basicly I’v boycotted the herald altogether) he does have a great piece about this today.

    1. Who cares when TannePuke has never had ONE winning season!!

  6. Author

    There’s been way too much talk in the media about the Dolphins’ new swagger, how they turned the page, how Adam Gase is coaching a whole new team now etc. I hope that’s all true. But it’s EXACTLY the same stuff the media wrote last year after Dan Campbell coached us and won two blowouts. Exactly the same stuff when Philbin started at 3-0 a few years ago. Consistency and maintaining the good things will have to be evident before I start heaping praise and talking about the playoffs. We beat two bad teams (Jets and Cleveland) and two mediocre teams (Pitt and Buff)

  7. @admin

    Pit was not mediocre when they came to town #1 I believe they had beat NE right? I can’t look it up right now.

    Plus in none of the “winning streaks” we have had in the last decade except two years ago after the debacle in England when Tannehill strung together a few really good games behind a good OL have we had a really good OL!

    We have a really good OL right now

    Admin you know that for the last two years I have talked about the OL

    You can not deny that when the starters play on the OL they are dominate. I’m excited over that fact because everyone else will play better with a really good OL and your seeing that


    No if one of those guys get hurt watch out but if they are healthy we should have a shot each week

    1. Wow…. an edit button would come in handy! Sorry I didn’t proof that before sending

    2. Pitt is 4-4 and Big Ben was injured!

      1. The only 2 plays I remember from the Steeler game is Ajayi’s long run at the end, and the horse collar we committed that refs missed. If the refs saw that horse collar, we woulda lost the game. That was huge man

        1. Author

          Floridan, don’t forget the botched onside-kick that was about to give Pittsburgh the ball on our 35-yardline, except the ref made them kick over. We definitely got help from the refs, or else Pitt wins easily.

      2. @Jay

        Love your selective memory – they are 4 and 4 now. They were 3 and 1 then and ben got injured I think in the 3rd quarter of the game because we kept hitting him.

        1. Remember Brian, Jay is not a real fan of the Dolphins.

          1. Remember guys, Phil is a kool aid drinkin, rose colored glasses, out of touch out of towner SPINELESS DUMBASS that doesn’t recognize the team has stunk for a decade!!

            1. And everyone is aware that Jay is a haterade drinking, keyboard crusading, empty headed, little punkass girlyman who doesn’t know what being a true fan of a team for decades is all about.


                1. Girlyman mad…girlyman put on SS uniform, practice Nazi salute in mirror now.

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