Time to Focus on a New Defensive Coordinator, and a New Defense While We’re At It

With Vance Jospeh gone now, it’s time for Adam Gase to focus on hiring a strong defensive coordinator.  It appears likely that Gase will give the job to current LB coach Matt Burke.

No one disputes that the Dolphins 2016 defense was inadequate.   But there are debates as to who bears the most of the blame.    And there’s a lot of blame to go around.

Aside from a few stars, almost every one of the starting 11 was an average player.  We had no beasts.  That blame falls on the front office.   They’ve missed the boat in the recent past, and drafted predominantly offense.  When they did reach out for a defensive stud, they failed to do their homework, choosing an utterly useless partyer like Dion Jordan.   Let me tell you something once and for all:   Dion Jordan did not start using ecstasy and weed and steroids and everything else AFTER he was drafted.   This kid didn’t turn into a drugstore AFTER the draft.  It was there all along, and the Dolphins missed it badly.

Our most glaring defensive hole–for years–has been at linebacker, and yet over the past few years, the Dolphins ignore LBs in the draft.    In 2016: Zero LBs taken.  2015:  0.   2014:   1 (Jordan Tripp, a current Packer and former Seahawk.   We draft him and Philbin cuts him so he can go on to star in Seattle and Green Bay).  2013:   1 again (Jelani Jenkins).   2012:  1 (Josh Kadu).  2011:  0.    You get the idea.   The Dolphins have a desperate need at LB, and they try to fill that need by drafting exactly 3 linebackers in the past 6 drafts.   That’s why this year, I am seriously calling for the team to draft 5 or 6 LBs.   Someone has to stick, right?

Okay, so moving on from the front office, let’s look at the way Vance Joseph utilized what he had.

First things first, for many of you citing the loss of Reshad Jones and Koa Misi as so crippling, I challenge you to tell me which games those two could have saved us in?  We only lost 3 games while those guys were gone.   We lost 4 games WITH them.  Statistically, we were better off without them.   I don’t think that’s true in the real world, but the numbers sure support it.  So would Jones and Misi have held Pittsburgh in check last Sunday or the Pats the week before?   Perhaps. But probably not.  The way Icy Matt Moore and some others played, it would not have mattered.  Bottom line:  we need MAJOR improvements over Jones and Misi.  We need guys who we can say “Yes, if we had him playing, we would have won for sure.”

And Jelani Jenkins?   LOL.   Somehow, we kept hearing his name throughout December, like some kind of savior.  “if only Jelani could get healthy and come back…”  He came back.  Guess what?

Okay, so throughout December, Vance Joseph watch team after team run roughshod over the Dolphins.   I’m sure he tried to do some different things, but nothing was noticeable.  And certainly nothing worked.  I was calling for some personnel changes.  Like putting in Mike Hull or Trevor Reilly or Jordan Lucas in place of Paysinger and Bobby McCain.  But for some reason, Vance Joseph stuck with the guys who kept failing him.  Change for change’s sake isn’t necessarily a wide move.  Even–dare I say it–Dion Jordan was an intriguing possibility at LB, but the Dolphins were stubborn.   First, after Dion got healthy and we desperately needed LB help, they kept him inactive anyway.   And second, even if they did activate him, the Dolphins said he would be a DE and only a DE.   Makes no sense!

But when you’re giving up 30+ up points per game in the last 3 weeks, why not try it?   You have nothing to lose.   You insert a kid and just say, “Let’s see what ya got.”   And you bench a guy who you’ve already seen what they got (and know they ain’t got much).

We barely touched Rapist Ben.  We never touched Deflator Brady.    Vance Jospeh had no answers, so I can only assume John Elway asked no questions when he agreed to hire Vance.  The Broncos already have an incredible defense led by Wade Phillips.   What can Vance Joseph possibly add to a a team that already has a championship-caliber defense and a championship coordinator already?   You hire a defensive-minded head coach when your defense stinks, not when they win Super Bowls for you.   It’s truly a baffling hire.

As noted earlier, the players themselves weren’t up to par at several positions.  The defensive line had its moments, but they didn’t overwhelm anyone consistently.  And when they did, the opponent made adjustments to stop us.  We made some nice defensive stands when we needed to, such as in the 49ers game at the end.  But then we blew it against Buffalo in the exact same situation.  When we needed a stop with the lead at the end of regulation and the Bills faced a 4th down, the defense just wasn’t there.

The team needs a string defensive leader.   A new Zach Thomas.   A new Jason Taylor.   Granted, you can’t just go out and find those types of players, but you have to try.

We have a juggernaut in our division called New England, and we have to stop them.  In our two games with NE this year, we fell behind by a total of 44-0 before we scored.  24-0 in the first game behind their 2nd and 3rd string QB, and 20-0 in the second game.  Missed tackles, mistakes, coaching, etc…. it’s all to blame, but the players themselves have to own up to it.  Let’s hope that next year, they do.





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  1. Wow,half your post was about Joseph and what you thought he should have done. I was tricked. I thought the title was,”Time to Focus on a New Defensive Coordinator, and a New Defense While We’re At It”. The defense was awful no matter who was in charge. You got your wish so let go already!
    Reshad Jones is a very good safety. Missy Koa is average at best and I doubt would start for many teams. Leon Jordan has been a front office miscue from when we moved up in the draft to get that miscreant. He should have been paid only when he played-like like Pouncey should have NOT been paid. The front 4 will be fine. The 7, now 6 with Jones recovered, all need replacing. Don’t get me started on Salami Jenkins-a mistake from the beginning. Our answer for several years was to sign free agents/busts to fill the LB corps. You failed to mention that front office failure. We need help on defense. Hopefully the wood you’re still sporting for Joseph leaving will recede soon.

  2. Author

    “Miscreant.” Comment of the day !! lol

    1. I was trying my best to be polite for once.

      1. Author

        Never a need to be polite when discussing Dion the Dealer.

  3. Author

    That was fast. Matt Burke was officially hired as DC. And he already said the same old bullshit that all his predecessors said: “We’re going to be an attacking defense.” I’m going to study more on Matt Burke before blogging further, but my initial reaction is that you took the guy who is in charge of the worst unit on our team (linebackers) and promoted him? Wait, what?

  4. I’m a little perplexed about this move to DC. I hope Gase knows what he’s doing. I can’t handle another year of turnstile defense. Off topic here but Bud Dupree has been fined by the league for his hit on Moore.

    1. Author

      Yes, Alvin Dupree got with with about $20,000 in penalties, and Moore got right up after the hit and played.
      Meanwhile, when we hit Rapist Ben (legally), he left both games in a foot cast !

  5. The D was ranked 24th in the league but the O was worse at 25th and the passing game was 28th!!

    Funny comments when the O is worse! and the passing O is pathetic!

    1. @Jay

      Any comment you make is funny snowflake

    2. The offense may be bad statistically but they were efficient. I will take efficient and we were in the top 5 in big plays. We didn’t see efficiency on the defensive side of the ball.

  6. For once,why can’t we hire someone with DC experience instead of promoting them from a position coach? I know,the good DCs get promoted to HC and the ones just below that level want to stay on the winning team they are already with. It’s a Catch 22. but we took a flyer on Gase and it’s worked this season,so I was hoping we’d hire an up and comer like himself. But no,like admin says,we hired a position coach who happened to coach the worst unit on the team. Why not just hire Screamer Rizzi,because he finally pulled his head out of all the previous HCs asses and almost breathes fresh air now.

  7. Offense was far more active and exciting and more 30 point games than last few years

  8. Coming off a winning season you should promote from within. It sends the right message to the other coaches and the players that they’re hard work and efforts will be rewarded. Plus thst coach is already familiar with the system and the personnel. It shortens the learning curve drastically I suppose.

    1. No. We beat a string of bad teams with the easiest schedule in the NFL-nothing more. That will become evident next season when the schedule is much more difficult and we are 8-8. Hire from within from a choice of mediocre at best coaches-no.

      1. “No. We beat a string of bad teams with the easiest schedule in the NFL-nothing more”

        I’ve seen you bash the Dolphins over and over and over for their 2016 schedule. I guess, in your eyes, the Patriots are just an elite team that goes about their day doing what they’re supposed to do – beat anyone they play. So while you’re admiring this elite team named the Patriots, here is a rundown of their tough 2016 schedule which shows why they (unlike the Dolphins in your eyes) deserve to be in the playoff:

        – Arizona Cardinals – won (also beaten by the dolphins)

        – Miami Dolphins – won

        – Houston Texans – won

        – Buffalo Bills – lost (but beaten by the dolphins)

        – Cleveland Browns – won (also beaten by the dolphins)

        – Cincinnati Bengals – won

        – Pittsburgh Steelers – won (also beaten by the dolphins)

        – Buffalo Bills – won (again, beaten the dolphins)

        – Seattle Seahawks – lost

        – San Francisco 49ers – won (also beaten by the dolphins)

        – New York Jets – won (also beaten by the dolphins)

        – Los Angeles Rams – won (also beaten by the dolphins)

        – Baltimore Ravens – won

        – Denver Broncos – won

        – New York Jets – won (again, beaten by the dolphins)

        – Miami Dolphins – won

        So, tell us KARMATOURER2, why, in your opinion, after playing a schedule that’s almost identical to the Dolphins 2016 schedule, the Patriots have nothing to prove next season but the Dolphins have to (in your opinion) get a tougher schedule to show their worthiness?

        Take off the blinders when looking at these other teams who also made the playoffs or stop being a fake Dolphins fan dude!

        1. Blinders? I said the Dolphins don’t deserve to be in the playoffs? Don’t lie about what I posted. Never said that. And why are you bringing NE into this discussion? Your entire post in off-topic and moronic. The Dolphins have a lot to prove next season-that’s why they will be 8-8 with a much more difficult schedule. I could care less about NE (or their schedule,this season or next). I get that you’re a rah-rah type fan-I’m a realist. And I’ve been a Dolphins fan far longer than you. Tell me again about how you are confused about bringing NE into this discussion? Dude!

          1. There you go again. “The Dolphins have a lot to prove next season-that’s why they will be 8-8 with a much more difficult schedule. I could care less about NE (or their schedule,this season or next). ”

            “Just enjoy our string of beating bad teams and move on the next season’s 8-8 record.”

            “Tell me again how many we scored against the ONLY 2 good teams we played-Baltimore and N.E.”

            Your words KARMATOURER2. You call the Patriots a “good team” but they also beat a, what you call it, “string of bad teams.” The Patriots made the playoffs like the Dolphins did by beating a whole lot of bad teams. From reading your comments, one can only surmise that you consider the Dolphins a bad team and unworthy of being in the playoffs and N.E. a good team and worthy of being in the playoffs. You are the only one who comes on this forum and writes these unflattering opinions about the Dolphins 2016 schedule and their opponents. That makes your whole summation about the 2016 Dolphins, “Moronic!”

            You, KARMATOURER2, a “realist?” But aren’t you the same guy who looked at the Dolphins 2016 schedule and thought “5 – 11?” Boy, talk about being confused…….

            Yeah, you’re a realist alright. You’re real about how much you admire the Patriots and the depths you’ll go to poo poo the Dolphins.

            “I’ve been a Dolphins fan far longer than you.” HA!…that’s bullshit because first, you have to learn how to be a real Fin Fan!

            1. @ Phil

              KARMATOURER2 is a JACKASS! Ignore that stupid prick!

              1. I mean, this guy KARMATOURER2, looked at the Dolphins 2016 schedule before the season started and thought the Dolphins were too sorry and would likely go 5 and 11 against this season. Now, he looks at the 2017 Dolphins schedule and thinks the same sorry team he thought would only go 5 and 11, the same sorry team now, will only go 8 and 8 with a much tougher schedule.

                Maybe he’s right Jay. With Tannehill at quarterback, he might be right. Because at quarterback for the Miami Dolphins, Tannehill has never won more than eight games in a season.

  9. Actually,the best way to judge how well the defense (or offense) played is by how many points they gave up. Not rushing yards and passing yards. And to a smaller extent,but still important, hoe long the other team had the ball. You can’t score without the ball,usually. Or defense played well enough,points-wise until the last 4 games.

  10. Our defense,not or defense.

    1. @karma

      Yes I agree that the last four games really turned me sour on the defense but you know what I never liked the 4 wide schematic Vance brought with him. I know he used it less down the stretch but I wasn’t a fan.

      Also I heard today that Denver actually interviewed Vance for HC several years ago so he has been on there radar.

      I didn’t know that but I know Denver and john elway arnt some crap front office like the some other teams so maybe there is more to Vance then we know.

      I wish him the best in Denver except when we play them!

      Also is there a possibility that Gase expected this and brought Burke in to mentor under Vance for as long as he was here?

      I also read that Gase wants to move back to a 3-4!

      I like it but here’s a tip.

      Draft a ton of linebackers and go after every starting LB in free agency!

      1. LBs in free agency didn’t work for us in the past but we may have no choice now to halt the turnstile.
        Vance was #1 right after Kubiak for that hire,or so I read.

    1. Well I guess I missed it….

      Of course hard to blame me since they missed so many calls!


        1. @Jay

          Nope I never miss your stupid comments thats for sure!

          Well I guess over the last three months they have all been pretty low IQ so they are hard to miss.

          You used to have some good observations (even if I didn’t always agree) it’s a shame you put so little effort into your posts now.

          1. Give Jay a break-he can’t breathe. There is no fresh air inside DoorMatt’s football pants where Jay’s face is permanently planted.

      1. Author

        Yes, it was flagged, and we were about to get the ball first and 10 from inside the 20! But then Jay Ajayi pushed some Steeler who wasn’t even involved in the play, and suddenly we were at first and 25 from the 32 yardline. Jay’s lack of discipline killed all momentum

  11. Author

    The first thing Vance Joseph did as head coach was to run Wade Phillips out of town. The defensive genius who won a Super Bowl just 12 months ago wasn’t good enough for genius Vance. The Dolphins should have tried for Phillips or Rex Ryan, instead of promoting the assistant coach of our terrible linebackers. I agree with Karma, and I have for years…you can’t always just hand coordinator jobs to someone down the ladder. Sometimes, you have to bring in experienced ringers.

    1. @Admin @Karma

      I completely agree!

      I really wish that Gase had reached out to someone with a lot of experience. Also why in the hell do all these teams fill coordinator roles when some of the best coaches in football are still at work? I mean don’t you think the Cowboys LB coach might be worth a look rather then our own? Or how about KC LB coach that unit has played above their pay grade this year?

      1. Dudes, Look…why would Gase try to hire someone to work under him like Rex Ryan who has an eight year head coaching record, or Wade Phillips who has a nine year head coaching record along with being an interim head coach three times? We’re talking at least 17 years of head coaching experience here compared to Gase’s one (1).

        If you were Gase, would you wanna knock heads with one of these guys? And don’t think for a minute that that wouldn’t happen.

        1. @Phil

          Maybe your right. Gase could be scared for his job but that is a double edged sword. Consider that this LB coach is a compleate crap shoot right? Well what if it dosn’t work and the defense is as bad or anywhere in the vacinity next year. How will that reflex on Gase?

          If he brings in someone with a ton of experiance like Rex or Wade he basicly is giving them a two year stint to spring board back to the HC rancks. Will they be taking his job? I wouldn’t think so because it they are getting hired again as HC in 2 years then that means they are doing good work and wont that reflect well on Gase as well?

          Plus think of what Gase could learn from Rex or Wade in two years on the sidelines with them. I have heard all year how Gase is not afraid of Alpha’s and I actually believe it.

          To me I would trust my coaching job to a proven coach not a LB coach who was doing coffee runs the year before that.

          1. I think Wade Philips is no longer on the potential HC carousel. I haven’t heard his name mentioned.The boy the Rams hired is making good choices so far. I think Gus Bradley would have been a good choice for DC. He did so with Seattle from ’09-’12 IIRC. He didn’t work out in Jacksonville as HC but they thought enough of him to hire him on his body of work in Seattle.

          2. I don’t think Gase would be “scared for his job” by hiring one of these guys. It would take some hellavu forgiveness, luck, and coach prowess for Rex Ryan or Wade Phillips to springboard from DC back to HC again somewhere. Not saying it couldn’t happen…but becoming an underling of some rookie NFL head coach after being a head coach yourself and catapulting back into a head coaching position on another NFL team doesn’t occur that often, if ever.

  12. Matt Burke-get a shave,asshole! Unless you want a part in Dick Dynasty. Oh wait,it’s cancelled. You can have a beard when you are Matt Patricia.

    1. Author

      Agreed agreed agreed. I think the Boston Slob Sox started that trend a few years ago, and somehow it caught on with the douchebag crowd.

      1. I know and I hate every team from that city-I won’t even type the name.

        1. Author

          I’ll allow it in hockey, because it’s a long-standing tradition during the playoffs, and it’s only temporary. Those guys have the common sense to shave off that disgusting beards as soon as the Stanley Cup is won.

  13. Author

    The Houston Texans are my new favorite, temporary team. I can’t take it if New England wins again.

    1. Any team that plays any team from that city is my favorite. I believe the Bills made a great hire with McDermott which doesn’t bode well for us.

  14. Bills signed Sean McDermott from Panthers who as DC had top 10 defense since 2102. Guess the Bills defense will be better.

  15. I knew our defense was bad but I didn’t realize this-Last season the Dolphins set an NFL record for most yards surrendered. nd we promote a guy from within! Granted,he had clowns to work with,but still……….

    1. Author

      Having clowns to work with is even more reason to try to change things up. Joseph never noticed that all his players lost their one-on-one battles. If you’re not good enough to beat the man opposite you, then that’s your fault. When your boss knows you’re not good enough but tells you to do it anyway? That’s the boss’s fault.

  16. Ok I couldn’t disagree more with the statement that Miami has no beasts on defense. Did you forget about suh? Or wake? Or jones? All of whom are considered top 10 players at their positions. I’ll give it to you the rest of the defense sucked, but those guys are all beats, capable of making game changing plays. Wake was hurt half the year and jones was to maybe that’s why you say that. Every other position should be considered up for grabs, expect maybe Kiko he had a good year.

    1. Author

      Well they were certainly beasts through November, but neither of them–and not one single Dolphin–upped his game for the last two weeks of the season when we needed them most.

    1. Author

      And I feel Jones is over-rated. A fine player, but not as star-quality as some see him. The team was 2-4 with Jones and 8-2 without him. Kinda shows me that we did okay without him, so not quite indispensible.

      1. 2 different teams.Between 1-4 & 8-2.Night and day. Or look at it this way-how much better would we have been with him. Outside of the DL and possibly Kinko,he was the best in the back. he could actually START for other teams.

  17. The D was much better than the O this year.

    Need to snag a top QB in the draft.

  18. The officiating crew for the patsies/texans game must be from Boston. Lame penalties against the Texans IMO.

    1. OT:I said the Falcons would bitch-slap the C-Sections. It was worse than the score showed. I think they will win it all.

  19. We should have hired Gus Bradley as DC. Big miss on him.

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