Stephen Ross Allows the NFL to Screw Over the Dolphins

In a disgusting move by the NFL, the league has officially taken away one of the Dolphins’ home games next year.

The Patriots get 8 home games.
The Jets get 8 home games.
The Bills get 8 home games.
The Dolphins get 7.

Home field advantage is one of the prize goals that every team strives for. Each year, in Weeks 15, 16, and 17, plenty of NFL teams have already clinched a playoff berth, but they go out and fight in their final games. Why?

The NFL (and apparently Stephen Ross) care more about these guys than they do about their own diehard Dolphin fans.

Why?  Because home field advantage in pro football is THAT important.

Travelling to London is a gruelling task for everyone involved. The players have to play in an odd time zone. The travel staff have to arrange passports for hundreds of players and staff. (Not to mention the difficulty and red tape involved when players with a criminal record have to apply for special permission to leave the country.) It’s a mess.

The NFL already demanded that the Dolphins fly to London THIS year. And now they are making us do it again? At the expense of one of our HOME GAMES against a heated division rival?

“We are very appreciative of the outstanding support from our fans in the UK,” said some NFL suit named Mark Waller, who must obviously be a Jet fan. Dear Mark, why don’t you appreciate the outstanding support of the South Florida fans? Why are you catering to a foreign country at the Dolphins’ expense.

This is a slap in the face to the Dolphins.

I am curious about Stephen Ross’s involvement. Was he given the chance to veto this? Did he willingly accept it? Or did the league foist this upon him despite his protests? Given that Mr. Ross has a long history of trying to spread the Dolphins experience out there (celebrity owners, stadium nightclubs), I wouldn’t be surprised if he willingly sought out another game in London. Why allow your team to play a game at home when instead they can play in a foreign country and get more exposure? If he accpeted this London game on his own, the he simply doesn’t understand what it takes to win.
His top priority MUST be the Miami Dolphins, and not the international goodwill of the game of football.

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21 Comments

  1. Why is it bad for the Dolphins? The Jets have to travel also, so neither team has advantage.

    1. Because the Jets still have 8 home games, while the Dolphins lose a home game to play in London.

    2. Author

      It’s awful when ignorant Jet fans invade my site.

  2. I hate to say this as one possible theory. But it may come down to money. Might be getting a.better compensation for playing in london than a home game to a team not likely to beat us. But loosing a home game and not making the other team loose theirs while the.other 2teams get a.full 8? If the division race is close i wonder what they will be saying if we loose by one game. Good insights

    1. Author

      Yeah, we keep hearing about possible financial incentives, but Ross (and every other owner) are multi-Billionaires with a capital B. They do not need the money.
      I think Ross has always been captivated by the star quality of his NFL team. Why should I allow my team to play only in Miami when I can put them in England instead? Who cares about home field advantage when I can show off in front of Europe. He is oh so wrong. (Again). He wants to show them off more than he wants to win. He wants the Dolphins to be media darlings rather than champions. He wants J-Lo and Gloria Estafan to be owners instead of true Dolphin fans. I mean, Packer fans actually own the Packers, and you don’t see them flying to Europe every year to watch their team.

  3. As a UK Fins fan since ’84, I obviously am delighted that the Fins are coming back to UK so soon and against a bitter rival too. I sat up from midnight ’til 6.00am watching ‘Fins lose in O/T to Jets by a FG and then having to go straight to work; so would love to see the Fins do them over live. I do sympathise that you are losing such a big home game, but to be honest, Uk fans are just as passionate about their supported teams. We don’t get the chance to see them live as often as we would like, but when we can, we do passionately. Living in Scotland, we (me, Dad [72], my Son [27], my Brother-in-Law [40’s] and Nephew [14]) travel 800 mile round trip to see these games and love every minute.

    1. Shout out to our friends and Fans from Scotland! Glad your getting your dolphins fix next year. Thanks for the support of a sport we are all sure pales in popularity next to Soccer ahem ahem uhhh Football. Yeah Im a damn yank! 🙂 Though it would be kind a funny if you called American Football Soccer since we call European Football Soccer. But I digress. I have heard since playing the Raiders , the Dolphins have amassed quite a following over there. Even converting some of the would be Raiders fans. Thanks for supporting a team with such a rich history. Please do revisit this growing site. No BS here only clear and direct stories positive and critical. That way true fans outta be.

  4. The best line I have read so far about this topic is this one:

    “They are more interested in hosting a Super Bowl rather than playing in one.”

    That says all you need to know about that moron Ross. He was duped into thinking that if he gives up a home game to a division rival, his chances of landing a Super Bowl in Miami go up.

    As a fan who is interested in the team’s performance more than it’s national perception, I couldn’t care less about hosting a Super Bowl if it impacts our chances of success on the field.

    This guy (Ross) is the worst owner in sports. We are never going to win with his leadership and if we ever do…it’s going to be despite this clown…not because of him. Mr. Magoo lives!

    1. Author

      MoonBear mentions a point that we noticed about Mr. Ross from day one. If you didn’t know any better, you’d think he was an employee of the Miami City Chamber of Commerce earning $25,000 a year to help spread good feelings about the city of Miami. He is far too concerned about hosting a Super Bowl, carbon footprints in the stadium, celebrity owners, anti-bullying, etc.
      Never forget, while the Dolphins were in the midst of a playoff race in late December, Mr. Ross was up in New York City visiting professors to learn about changing bullying perceptions in middle America.

  5. Lets be honest here for one second. A Dolphins/Jets home game attracts just as many Jet fans as it does Dolphins fans due to all of the northerners living down here.

    Those games are never “home field advantage” UK has a HUGE fan base of the Dolphins and the crowd there would be better suited for this particular game.

    With having said that maybe the UK should start there own league because it’s not fair for the fans and the players to take our game overseas. Do they send over their big soccer clubs to play live games over here? Regular season games?

    I know jack about soccer and could care less but if the biggest club over there played their rival and the game was sent to Miami they would flip shit over there.

    1. Firstly as Scottish Dolphins fan from Glasgow, I’m mightily pissed that they are playing in London next year since I’m flying out to Orlando with my family for our holidays the following day. We were hoping to see the Dolphins in Miami, but now I’m not so sure since the London game is classed as a home game.
      Secondly, coming from Glasgow, and the home of the Old Firm, I think it would be great for Rangers FC and Celtic FC to play a game in the USA.

  6. I gotta say something in an indirect defense of Ross about one matter. His community development projects. If Miami can get a superbowl and it seems these London games have much to do with it. The economy of South Florida will benefit big time. The City and County may be pressuring him to use his influence to justify any quid pro quo relationships they have made. I know , I know, the stadium bill that didn’t pass blah blah blah. That doesn’t mean he still may need to keep using the Dolphins Franchise as a method of improving the economy of South Florida just in different ways.

    Look I used to live in South Florida and proudly started my fanship mainly because of that. I can tell you I haven’t been there in a very long time. Once beautiful West Palm Beach a known financial city, with old and rich retirees, is now a shit hole and ghetto as heck. It only took a brief visit to South Florida to see just how dire things have become there. Without a strong local economy, running an NFL franchise becomes exponentially more difficult if the fans cant afford to attend games and purchase merchandise. Conversely any tax incentives and breaks given to Ross need justification or otherwise the extra income could go to improving a city that has small spots of opulence surrounded on all sides by run down cities and ghettos.

    Honestly the only black mark on my recent visit to South Florida was my astonishment at the urban decline. We got the hell outta West Palm because we are pretty sure we almost got robbed while stopping for gas there. The Miami Gardens area seemed a bit more nice but we just couldn’t trust that area and dared not explore any more. Mind you this coming from someone excited to revisit the place of my childhood. Now if I think that way , imagine what visitors from out of state think.

    Lastly my friends couldn’t believe how cheap our excellent tickets were. Lower bowl section 140 row 20. 100 bux each including 2 parking passes. They said worse Jaguars tickets sold for 240 each and were hard to get. Miami cant even sell out its stadium for the Packers, or Chargers games even though the tickets were sold inexpensively . That is not a good formula for a profitable franchise and could lead to the Phins relocating. Who wants that? That would be the day I cry an aqua and orange tear.

    I hate it that we still seem to be the NFL’s peeons and have to cow tow and kiss up to get some needed economic boost possibilities. I imagine other franchises arent nearly as much in need because they have a very strong local economy ahem (Seattle for instance) affording the luxury of passing up on deals like ross took. I could be dead wrong or way off but one trip to South Florida really made me feel spoiled living here in lowly Orlando. Think about that.

    Im not trying to throw cold water on a subject that makes me equally red hot. As fans we’ve been tolerant and patient for too damn long and this is one more thing to chill our enthusiasm. But I have to say that Ross is committed to Miami and has deep pockets. Imagine if some investor owned our team and only thought of his bottom line. We could very well already be a new expansion team for some other area with far better economic stability to profit from. Its happened many times as we’ve all seen. Right now even though I don’t like everything that Ross has done we can at least count on him keeping Miami put. This may be one of the necessary measures to further that conviction.

    Thoughts
    PhinsUp

    1. Author

      Great post. I do agree with you that Ross cares a lot about the area and makes decisions based on that. But the point we emphasize is that the time, money, and energy that he puts into the City of Miami is energy that should instead be focused on the Miami Dolphins.
      I mean, Mr. Ross is arguing with state legislatures over tax funding, but he won’t argue with Roger Goodell over making us give up a home game. Priorities.
      George Steinbrenner turned the Yankees from doormats into champions by spending money and by not tolerating losers. Can you name me ONE venture that George did for the City of New York? I’m not saying that GS didn’t love NYC, but he realized he was not the owner of NYC. So instead, he made the Yankees great, and NYC benefitted.
      Make the Miami Dolphins into winners, and the City of Miami will automatically reap tremendous benefits.

  7. Author

    We are in the midst of a 3-game win streak with a great game coming up and tons of momentum on our side.
    Yet somehow, Mr. Ross has changed the subject and has Dolphins Nation complaining today.

    1. Look after your nickels and your dimes will look after themselves. Meaning, a winning team will draw the economic boost needed and I feel that is true formula if even applied in Alaska or Delaware. Seems he’s trying to hedge his bets by playing both sides sadly at the expense of his team’s home advantage. But this is why I really love this site. Once again I only read the headline and initially thought oh ok cool. The Phins are playing in London again. If I had read the article on CBS or ESPN, the loss of a home game would have been troubling. But instead I read it here first. I continually get a different perspective by reading the articles posted here and feel this keeps my ability to shop talk sharp. You’ve got a lot of courage posting articles with headlines saying negative things about the Dolphins. But if one is open minded and fair, they will judge them by their content and accuracy vs a lemming like dislike for anything negative. Great article it really was engaging and gives me things to think about going forward. Hopefully we will make up for the lost game next year by making the playoffs with home field advantage. I’ll keep dreaming until then.

  8. Clearly, we can all agree this is an effort to host the Super Bowl. No team has to go to London in back to back years- the NFL has already stated that. We (Ross) volunteered.

    Here is the real reason- Ross cares nothing about boosting the economy of South Florida. These are the same people that turned their backs (and wallets) on him when he wanted to split the costs of stadium upgrades.

    Ross didn’t become a billionaire by worrying about the financial well being of others.

    Since Ross owns Joe Robbie/Dolphins/Landshark/Sun Life Stadium, he stands to pocket the majority of the money if we host the SB. It’s a guaranteed sellout, and you can charge whatever you want per ticket.

    I am sure the owners have gotten wind of how much Jerry Jones made when Dallas hosted the SB. This is merely Ross’ attempt to recoup the money he’s putting into the stadium. Other than owning the Dolphins, he has no ties to the Miami metro community. He lives and works in Manhattan.

    So sayeth BIG J……..

  9. Well stated Big J. I thought Ive read that he is a long time Dolphins fan and has publicly stated his commitment to Miami . But who knows? That anecdote also plays well with the media and could be contrived to improve his image. I will say its obvious the Phins aren’t doing well with ticket sales even for our bigger draw games. And its sad the Jaguars can charge more for their tickets. If Ross is simply an unattached business man, Im worried. You cant continuously sell a product based on its once proud history and that fact threatens the bottom line. That line more like a dam definitely has sprung some leaks. Make the Dolphins profitable and insure its security in Miami. And down the line , make the Dolphins a winning team and also plug many of those financial leaks. This decision has a push pull effect and plays sides opposite on another. Either way success on the field or superbowl ticket sales will serve all us fans well. And I will say the local government does have political pressure they can use to further their piece of the pie. The stadium bill simply sucked and could have used a better PR person. And if the fact that it failed doesn’t echo the narrative that the economy in that area is in dire straights. Nothing will. The opponents used the increase of hotel rates and taxes to defeat it. A well off populace with plenty of expendable income would have cared less. And the local gov wouldn’t have felt the pressure to oppose it. So funny how a game being played in London can cause such and interesting discussion.

  10. What hurt Ross was how the Marlins and the Dade county commissioners absolutely fleeced the city. The Marlins got a state of the art stadium for nothing. The vote never made its way to the masses and people were pissed.

    Generally speaking, residents come out on the short end when local gov’t agrees to pay for all or part of a new stadium. I think Norman Braham said it best, “It’s welfare for billionaires.”

    Ross might claim to be a Dolphins fan, but that’s not why he bought the team. Once you have tons of money, you inevitably want power or prestige.

    You can run for office, ala Rick Scott, but that comes with its own pitfalls. You really have to put your personal life out there for the masses, something the uber rich don’t like to do.

    The new “nouveau riche” thing to do is buy a sports franchise, and none are more prestigious than the NFL. There are only about 125 total franchises in all of American sports, making them ultra rare and the biggest feather in one’s cap so to speak.

    Remember, people don’t get rich by accident, at least not billionaires. They care about money, and even more so about making it.

    As much as we may love the Dolphins on this site, Miami as a whole is lame sports city. The fans are as fair weather as they come, mainly because very few people are actually from there.

    Ross knows this, and I bet he would jump at the chance to move the team to London. London is bigger than NYC- imagine the money he would make being the only team in town (or country, or continent)??

    This man knows exactly what he is doing…..

    -BIG J

  11. Author

    It’s still pretty bad to see soooooo many empty seats in the stadium each home game. Even though the games allegedly sell out, people don’t show up.
    Still, despite that, home field advantage is huge. Our weather wilts opponents and gives us a great advantage. October in England will be about 40 degrees. Advantage Jets.
    We all like the feeling of a Monday Night game…it’s prime time, and it’s exciting, and you know the stadium will be packed. That is why teams vie for MNF and why the networks want the best games possible on prime time.
    But Mr. Ross is equating MNF to the London games. He thinks that because we’re in England, we’ll be in the national spotlight, just like if we were on MNF.
    But what he doesn’t understand is that the national spotlight costs us home field advantage.

  12. Yeah seriously sad even though the Chargers game was decently filled. You could still see empty seats near the top bowl. Miami really needs an economy boost for all folks living there. This will turn more folks into mid to upper middle class, with expendable income. This is how Miami stays viable and secures its future. A Superbowl is one way to achieve this albeit temporarily. Miami used to have a flourishing economy sadly the main reason was the drug trade during the 70’s and 80’s hmmmmn weren’t those our golden years? And it wasn’t because everybody was involved in selling and importing drugs. No it was because corrupt banks helped billionaire drug dealers launder their money by taking in their cash. Consequently the banks had lots of money to loan fueling the building of skyscrapers and expensive streets lined with super upscale clubs.. It was simply crazy how Miami boomed during those years. Now tell me this exactly what is Miami known for now since those days are gone? Sure its a port city, still has a financial side though not as much as back then, vacation hot spot for the Jet Set.. ok, and what else of material worth? What industry that supports directly or indirectly the middle class? Maybe BigJ knows cause I sure don’t. This fact worries me a lot about Miami’s future. If some of the things BigJ mentioned are true, I just cant see how Miami can stay in Miami for that much longer. I just had another talk with a friend trying to get Dallas Cowboys tickets. He said the same tickets we had relatively to cowboys stadium cost 500-600 dollars. And guess what Dallas has one of the best economies out of all 50 states. Again plenty of residents with expendable income. Miami cant sell out with the best of their seats selling for 200-300 bux. That is all you need I need to know.

  13. The Dolphins used to play down at the Orange Bowl, closer to downtown and Coral Gables. Now, they play in the heart of the ghetto in North Miami (Miami Gardens). Typically, stadium are either in a downtown location, or in a sh*thole neighborhood. The fins play in the latter.

    I guess the thinking was they would make the stadium more “centrally located” by moving in further north so it would attract more FTL and WPB fans. What it ended it up doing was making it inconvenient for everyone- Miami residents included.

    To reply to Phins Up- until America starts making things again (manufacture for export) we won’t have a middle class. Right now, there is a ever widening split and people either are some sort of professional (doctor, lawyer, college degree professional) or they work retail. There isn’t much in between anymore. Manufacturing created and supported our middle class, and that has all but left for China, Mexico, central america, etc.

    That’s why raising the min wage doesn’t make sense. Companies are going to find a way to do more with less people or move those jobs overseas. Look at the NFL veteran min wage and what it has done. Plenty of veterans would love to get rid of it. If a team has to pay a 5-6 year vet $800K, or a rookie or 1 year player $350K, who do you think they will sign? In most cases, the veteran would accept the $350K just to stay in the league, but that is no longer an option. Rather than increasing wage floors, gov’t should do more to limit ridiculous CEO and executive pay and put in wage ceilings- but that is a conversation best suited for a different website. 🙂

    Let’s go Dolphins- give that sh*thole city of Detroit even more to be miserable about!!!

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