Shot to Nothing

Monday, December 31, 2007

Last Call for the 1-15 Bandwagon!

This article by Jeff Darlington of the Miami Herald, sums up the future of the Dolphins perfectly, after their '07 season.

It was great to see John Beck come back from that nervy fumble to lead two impressive drives and not only throw his first NFL TD, but Rush for another one as well.

The big news now is whether Parcells has the strength of character (and mind) to ignore the pleas of fans and media alike and give Cam Cameron another year at the helm.

I see this as a big step for the NFL. In previous days, when the media were less persistently salivating over the prospect of a story, Head Coaches would be given the time to rebuild. They wouldn't be expected to perform miracles with a bad roster and a bundle of injuries to key players. But in this day and age, the media sadly have more power to dictate the future of a team.

I believe that a new Head Coach is not what Miami need right now. I believe that consistency and smart off-season moves are far more important for the future of this team. And I believe that Cam Cameron can turn this team around as early as next season, if he is just given the chance.

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Saturday, December 29, 2007

Reasons To Keep The Cameron Rolling

Imagine what would've been if the 49'ers had dropped Bill Walsh after his first season as head coach finished 2-14. Imagine if the Broncos had dropped John Elway after he was benched in his rookie year.

In the 24hr media driven world in which we now live, the press have become more concerned about the story of a fired coach then they have about what it means for the team.

And for the Dolphins, losing Cam would mean starting all over again. Again.

Cameron's first year as the Phins Head Coach cannot be judged solely on the results. Inspite of the cliche, they do not tell the whole story.

Take for instance, the injuries that the Dolphins have suffered this season. Imagine your teams roster... now put a big line through the starting quarter-back... done that? Ok, now put one through the starting running back, the second string running back, the third string running back... oh and the fourth string running back too.

How does that look to you? But wait, we're not done! Now strike a line through five DBs (any five you like, as long as at-least three of them are starters) and strike a line through your star linebacker, the leader of your team, and then one through the guy that replaced him. Stick all those players on I/R and tell me how many games you think you will win with what's left of your roster?

You see my point.

What coach could find a win with all of those injuries? Well, Cam Cameron actually. He found one against the Ravens just two weeks ago.

But aside from harking on the bad luck, what other reasons might we have for wanting Cameron to remain as head coach in Miami?

Let's see... How about personnel?

Just about every bright spark in this dark Dolphins season has come from a player who was either, drafted by Cameron, brought in by Cameron or developed by Cameron.

This year we saw Ronnie Brown finally become the stud RB we have been waiting for and Jason Allen come back from the bust abyss to lead the team in interceptions.

We saw Greg Camarillo come off of free agency and score two touch downs in two games, (one of which was the winning one in OT) and we saw Jesse Chatman over-performing week after week as second string RB until he too went down.

From his first draft we have the incredible success stories of Samson Satele, Ted Ginn Jnr (who is looking remarkably un-bustlike), Lorenzo Booker, Paul Soliai and Reagan Mauia. The jury is still out on John Beck.

Remember all that hullabaloo about the Dolphins draft last year? All seems a bit silly now, doesn't it?

Whether we like it or not, the Dolphins are in a state of rebuilding. Cameron has already put one superb set of youngsters in place and has set about rebuilding the roster. He has found diamonds in the free agency rough at times when we desperately needed them and he has held the locker room together, despite a truly horrendous season. What more can you ask from a head coach in his situation?

I am fully behind Cameron and I have everything crossed that Parcells will give him another year to continue rebuilding this team. The press may not like it, but it's the sensible thing to do.

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Wednesday, December 19, 2007

McLaren (Finally) Admit To Spying On Ferrari

There's something unsatisfying about an admission after the fact. Instead of a genuine apology, it comes across more like a plea of self-pity - 'I'm so sorry I got caught'.

Yesterday McLaren admitted on it's website that
"It has become clear that Ferrari information was more widely disseminated within McLaren than was previously communicated," - translation: 'We lied about how many people had access to the stolen info and about who was using it. And for what.'

"McLaren has written to the WMSC to apologise that it has taken an FIA investigation to find this information and have expressed our deep regret that our understanding of the facts was improved as a result of the FIA inspection rather than our own investigations." - translation: 'We're very sorry you caught us cheating'

The worst thing about this tardy confession is that it came via McLaren's website. If you're going to make a weasel apology, at-least have the sack to do it in person for Pete's sake.

McLaren will now have to overhall many of their new design features for next years car as they were based on the stolen information. This could be bad news for Lewis Hamilton, as design changes this late in the game may affect the cars' performance next season.

[BBC Sport]

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Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Isn't It Time The Premier League Had A Playoff?

The key reason I don't like the Premier League is that it is entirely uncompetitive. In twelve seasons only three teams have won the title and it looks unlikely that any team outside of Arsenal, Chelsea and Man Utd will ever win it again.

With the season often over for many teams only 3/4 of the way in, perhaps the Premier League should consider introducing a playoff to decide it's annual winner.

The structure would be fairly simple; The top six teams make it into the playoff with the top two receiving a first round bye and securing home-field advantage. The games would be played in knockout format and the final could be played at Wembley, in one of the hottest sporting tickets of the year.

This would be a win win system for the Premier League. Not only would it give six teams a decent shot at winning the big one each year, but it would also provide a truck load in TV money (like they need anymore). It would only mean an extra three games for a maximum of two teams and it would lead to some absolute thrillers.

Now I'm sure fans of the 'big three' won't like it, but given time I'm sure that even they will see the benefits. So whaddya' think peeps? Is it time for the FA to move with the times and give us a playoff?

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Monday, December 17, 2007

1-13 Never Felt So Good

Let's just savor that moment again for a second:



There were a lot of 'Here we go again' moments yesterday. Up by three with 1.56 left on the clock, Feeley sends the Kickoff out of bounds - 'Here we go again'. The Ravens drive the entire length of the field and equalise - 'Here we go again'. The Ravens win the coin toss for overtime - 'Here we go again'. Matt Stover misses a field goal despite already hammering through three during the game - 'Here we... oh wait a minute... this isn't in the script...'

It's hard to describe the relief myself and so many other Dolphins fans are feeling today. It doesn't matter what happens in the last two games now, we've got our mark in the 'W' column and no matter how small, we've got some semblance of respect back. Today there's a smile on my face. Today I'm proud to be a Dolphins fan again.

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Saturday, December 15, 2007

Can We Get Past This Whole Mispronouncing For Politeness Business?

Stay away from myNow that Monsieur Fukudome is headed to U.S. shores perhaps we should try and nip this thing in the bud once and for all. If only for entertainment purposes.

Why do sportscasters feel the need to change the pronunciation of some guys name, just to avoid saying a 'bad word'? I mean, come on, nobody refrains from using the term 'Bitch' during dog shows do they?

Case in point - Willie Colon, Tackle, Pittsburgh Steelers
For some ungodly reason, announcers have taken it upon themselves to change 'Co-lon' to 'Cologne'. Like 'Willie Perfume' is really a whole lot worse then 'Willie Ass'... for pete's sake.

Case in Point - Sam Koch, Punter, Baltimore Ravens
Look, take this name and show it to any European and he'll tell ya that 'Koch' is pronounced 'Cock' ok? It's not Koosh or Kosh or Kuch or any of those other silly versions that various announcers have come up with. The mans name is Sam Koch - deal with it, I'm sure he has. It's probably the reason he became a punter.

There are numerous 'Gay' s in sports these days and we aren't trying to change their surnames are we? Let's just drop the whole charade now ok?

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Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Still With You...

When I was a kid, playing football in the yard in my Miami Dolphins tracksuit, it was all about Marino.

Marino took the snap, Marino dropped back and Marino either handed it off to Marino or threw a long bomb down the field to Marino who would score an incredible 75 yd touchdown with a one handed catch.

And when I got a little older and was working hard in school, I didn’t have dreams of playing in the NFL, I had dreams of playing Middle Linebacker for the Miami Dolphins.

Back then I used to take it for granted that the Dolphins would make it to the playoffs, but now those glory days are gone. We are 0-13 and have little hope in sight. The media have drawn the knives for Cameron and the fans are fuming. 0-16 is a real possibility.

When you take football as seriously as I do, watching your team lose every week can be a horrible experience. Every Sunday has left me feeling sick to the stomach and depressed beyond consoling. It takes me a full week to recover. I still get a little optimistic on a Sunday morning, but only to see the Dolphins crushed again. It’s terrible.

But it’s ok.

I understand that everything in the NFL is cyclical and that there is a ‘worst’ team in every season, this just happens to be our turn. I understand that, given time, the Dolphins will rebuild. They will turn it around.

So while some fans find it too much and turn away, while some reporters fill their papers with bile and call for everybody’s head, know that I’m still with you Dolphins, for better or worse.

And if you go 0-16 this year and then go 0-16 the year after that, I’ll still be with you. ‘Cause I’m a Miami Dolphins fan, always have been, always will be and if you go through tough times, then I go through them with you.

So when it’s -200° in Foxborough and we’re down 75-0 to the Patriots in the forth quarter and all the fly-by-night, glory seeking, lightweight Pats fans have gone home to their warm beds, you can look up and through the blizzard and the fog you’ll see one fan still standing. He’ll be cheering every first down you make and screaming ‘D-Fense’ ‘til his lungs burst. And he won’t leave the stands ‘til you leave the field.

And that fan will be me. I will never desert my team just because times are tough.

So play with heart Dolphins, play with pride. Fight for every inch and remember, I’m pulling for you.

And when the glory days return and Dolphin Stadium is filled with bandwagon jumpers, I’ll be there with a smile on my face and a beer in my hand. And I’ll be cheering, as always. Cheering to the bitter end.

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