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Who’s to blame for the ****ty defense?

Discussion in 'Miami Dolphins Forum' started by Dorfdad, Sep 20, 2020.

  1. Hooligan

    Hooligan Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    It was my understanding that home teams were permitted to add canned crowd noise in the stadiums but, that there was a decibel limit to the volume. I imagine the crowd noise that we hear over the TV is added electronically to the broadcast signal. It's a strange year.
     
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  2. KeyFin

    KeyFin Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    I agree with everything you said...but it was a roster of nobodies BY GRIER'S CHOICE. My only point is that he has to deliver on that choice and show improvement this season to be on track for that "perennial playoff contender" next year.
     
  3. Ronnie Bass

    Ronnie Bass Luxury Box Luxury Box

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    I think we're still on track, I do think we need to consider that we went up against two very good football teams so far, the Pats were just 1.5 yards away from beating the Seahawks in Seattle last night, and one thing I think a lot of folks are overlooking is how much of a change did the Bills have to go through coming into this season, they were a playoff team last year and I'm sure they made some changes and upgrades, so coming into this season they just really had to pick up where they left off.
     
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  4. The_Dark_Knight

    The_Dark_Knight Defender of the Truth

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    I understand what you're saying Key. Grier CHOSE to gut the roster last season, to accumulate draft picks and build the team from scratch. I get it, but look at it from this angle...

    If Grier had all of the personnel he and Flores wanted last season during Flores' rookie season, you would still expect there to be that learning curve with a new head coach and the Dolphins would play poorly that first season. His second season, you would expect the team to play much better since they had a full season under their belt with the Flores philosophy.

    Well, that's not the case with the Dolphins. They gutted the roster and fielded "a" team. They were the Miami Dolphins only insomuch they were a group of 53 people wearing the uniforms of the Miami Dolphins. In essence, they were all replacement players. This is the first season Flores has with the team HE and GRIER wanted. That learning curve I spoke of is to be expected this season. If we win 6 games this season, I'm going to be surprised, particularly with what happened with the coronavirus.

    Next season I expect the Dolphins to go 10-6 with a wildcard appearance and realistically compete for a DEEP playoff run perennially starting in 2022.

    Remember, this team is being put together for a decade(s) long dynasty, not the short/near term as it has been for the last 20 years.
     
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  5. KeyFin

    KeyFin Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    Sure, I completely get that and I hope you're right. My problem is that this entire process hinges on Chris Greer being the best GM we've had in decades. If he's an average GM then we're screwed, because that means we drafted/traded for some busts and we're still far behind schedule. I've hated this process because we're betting everything on a 20+ year Fins employee who is claiming that he's had the secret sauce all this time...it's just an extreme gamble and a huge leap of faith.

    I realize that this team will need a few months to really gel together, meaning that 6-8 wins is probably the absolute best we can expect this season. And I'm fine with that- I'm personally expecting around 5 wins total. But at the same time, the clock is still ticking and fans have short memories. A year from now, I'm not going to be saying, "Well, it's only year 3 and year one doesn't count..." And here's why....

    If it wasn't for Grier, we would have kept Gase and he would have kept Tannehill. We don't need to have this debate all over again, but we now see Tannehill's true potential and Gase believed in him 100%. If we would have upgraded a few linemen last year in the draft with RT under center, what would our record have been? Would we have made the playoffs last year? Where would we be after two games this season...could we have been the dominant force in the AFC E under Gase/RT? It's only fair to look at both sides of the coin...what we threw away vs what we gained.

    Again, I hope that you're 100% correct in us being right on schedule in building a perennial playoff contender. I like many of the moves Grier has made in the draft and I realize that several of our picks are long-term projects. But that doesn't give Grier a lifetime free pass on shipping out Tunsil, Minkah, our entire pass rush, etc. and then delivering a vastly inferior product in their places. I will continue to call him on that stuff because that's what fans are supposed to do. That doesn't mean that I'm not rooting for you to be right...but I strongly believed that we were a few less OL injuries away from being a playoff team in 2017 & 2018.

    Until I can believe that once again, I'll be critical of Grier and his 5-year plan for dominating the post-season. I like Flores as well and this has nothing at all to do with him....he's a good coach that's doing the best with what he has. We simply need to see some results later this season to justify many of those moves last year.
     
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  6. Galant

    Galant Love - Unity - Sacrifice - Eternity Staff Member

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  7. The_Dark_Knight

    The_Dark_Knight Defender of the Truth

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    Yea it is tough being a Dolphins fan, isn't it? We've had so many "this year is it!" only to have our hearts crushed. I was frequently excited when we would sign this lineman or that lineman and confident that with that veteran signing, we were finally going to fil that hole and the line would be squared away...only to have said limen injured and having the jury rig an OL for each game.

    We all know my feelings on Tannehill...always felt that way so like you said, no sense in re-hashing that. As for Gase, he fooled me our first season when we went 10-6 and to the playoffs but he isn't head coach material. If he was indeed that great, Sam Darnold would be flourishing and the Jets would be the talk of the AFC East. He's going to ruin Darnold. As for Minkah Fitzpatrick, I was estatic when we drafted him. The kid was incredible in Alabama and I was excited to have him on our roster but...when he started complaining and openly calling out the coaching staff, talent versus discontent...he had to go. Can't have a house divided and if the team isn't 100% united behind their head coach, they're never going to win.

    The Achilles Heel of our team for years, the offensive line has actually been a bit of a pleasant surprise. Fitzpatrick hasn't been running for his life. He's actually had some decent protection so for the passing game, that is a bright spot. Hopefully they'll continue to improve, particular in rush blocking...getting holes opened for the running backs to hit. If that unit continues to improve, everything else is going to fall into place offensively. Everything I know of football tells me that.
     
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  8. Dorfdad

    Dorfdad Well-Known Member

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    Agree with a lot of this, but that's also my concern. Is there a plan? I ask because I'm legit concerned. We had an improving Defense and we let the coordinator go. Turned over a good chunk of that roster. Then we brought a retired OC back as the Offensive Coordinator because he was familiar with Fitz. Fitz isnt the future why not bring in an OC who excels with todays modern quaterbacks? I feel Chan is going to try and put TUA into a classic QB system and that will probably not work out well instead of building a new young innovative and exciting offense around TUA's skillsets. So that means we probably get another coordinator at some point and start the progression over again.

    I'm worried that Flores and Grier don't have a rock solid 5 year plan, but instead of playing to stay competitive and keep their jobs.

    I like Flores but don't like either Coordinators at this point. Never liked Chan's systems they never worked out. So why would it magically work here with less talent?

    Flores gets 2 more years from me and needs a deep playoff push in those 2 years to keep his JOB. Way to many other teams turn things around quickly.
     
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  9. KeyFin

    KeyFin Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    Personally, I kind of applaud Minkah. Several players said that if we traded Tunsil, they'd want out since it signals that the team wasn't trying to win. You have to realize that player careers are very short...most don't make it past a few years in the league and they have to prove themselves today. We know Minkah is a 10+ year player but even so, do you throw away 2-3 years in a rebuild hoping that it all works out? That's a lot for a team to ask of a young superstar who's trending in the right direction. As I said, at least he stuck to his guns and did what he said he'd do.

    What you said about Gase sort of echoes my feelings about Grier. In 2017, we had the hurricane and our "home field" ended up being in California...that team went through way more adversity than our 2019 squad since we had to find a QB just 2 weeks before the season started (Jay freakin' Cutler...). Coming off a playoff appearance in year 1 and losing your starting QB, how did we get to "Gase can't coach" over the next two seasons? It's all in the perspective of our viewpoints and not necessarily reality....Gase delivering two below .500 seasons with a mincemeat line meant he had to go, but we're thrilled with Flores winning 5 games. Who brought in Gase's linemen though who quickly ended up on the IR? That would be Grier.

    But for whatever reason we tend to give Grier praise for the good stuff, blame the ex head coach for the bad stuff and ignore the rest because we want to be hopeful.

    The OL this season has been decent....not great but certainly not the mess we started last year with either. The good news is that we did do this part right by drafting young and letting them build into the roles...it takes some growing pains but it's the only way to build a long-term solid group of players. My only hope is that we draft a few more linemen next season to build out the reserves- that's been the "cardinal sin" with this team for decades now since it's not just about the starting five. Realistically you need 7 or 8 quality starters to make it thru the season.

    As I said, I'm hopeful Grier is the guy everyone thinks he is...but he'd have to be WAY BETTER than the average GM for this to work out favorably within 3-5 seasons. We did get our QB of the future and that's a huge piece, but I don't know that we can make it solely on young players across all 22 positions. We'd have to go very heavy D-line and edge early in the next draft....which means that we'd better be set at WR, OL, LB and secondary. And that's to be competitive in year 3...which is around the time we fired Sparano, Gase, Philbin and countless GM's (AKA, our last decade + of football leadership).

    My biggest fear isn't that we suck this season/next season...it's that we eventually fire Grier/Flores and start this process all over again. I'm so fed up with rebuilding mode because unless you really see that vision through, then you're never actually building anything of substance and you're completely wasting the talent that you do have on the roster today.
     
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  10. The_Dark_Knight

    The_Dark_Knight Defender of the Truth

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    I think Chan Gailey the offensive coordinator gets lumped in too many times with Chain Gailey the head coach. As an HC, he was terrible. It was just too much for him to handle but Chan Gailey the OC?

    1989 Denver Broncos; 11-5
    1990 Denver Broncos; 5-11 (damned Raiders and Chiefs lol)
    1996 Pittsburgh Steelers; 10-6
    1997 Pittsburgh Steelers; 11-5
    2000 Miami Dolphins; 11-5
    2001 Miami Dolphins; 11-5
    2008 Kansas City Chiefs; 2-14
    2015 New York Jets; 10-5
    2016 New York Jets; 5-11

    Out of 9 seasons as an OC, he had 6 successful seasons working with Dan Reeves, Bill Cowher, Dave Wannstedt and Todd Bowles. At quarterback for each of these teams he had John Elway, Kordell Stewart, Jay Fiedler and Ryan Fitzpatrick.

    Gailey's offense gets criticized often as being "too simple" and while there may be some validity to that, he has had success with it but more importantly, as Fitzpatrick is a bridge to Tua, Gailey and his offense is more than likely also going to be that bridge for this young team as well. Could be wrong, but I just think that has to be part of the plan.
     
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  11. djphinfan

    djphinfan Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    Flores
     
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  12. FphinFantastic

    FphinFantastic Member

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    Bright side, at this rate we may have 2 of the top ten picks. As long as Houston keeps losing....
     
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  13. Galant

    Galant Love - Unity - Sacrifice - Eternity Staff Member

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  14. M1NDCRlME

    M1NDCRlME Fear The Spear

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    I have destroyed the cartilage in both of my knees. I can tell you the first part is getting healthy (this is the easy part), the second part is getting back into game shape, but the third part is mental. You have to learn to trust you body all over again and it takes a while to get to the point, the first time you make a cut is scary and when everything stays in place it’s a relief. Then you build on that with harder cuts, and slowly the mind starts to accept that your body is really ok. It took me over a year from recovery to being able to really go full speed and not worry that I was gonna break something again. X is going thru this and will get thru it eventually but it takes time.
     
  15. Phins_to_Win

    Phins_to_Win Well-Known Member

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    I'm not ready to throw the towel in yet, but I was expecting to see a better team then this. I expected to see raw talent that makes a lot of rookie mistakes, and I would be ok with a losing record if I saw that. So far we have looked mediocre at best in all areas of the field. It could just be the lack of a preseason, maybe these guys are still working on translating what they learn to what they know. Its been a rough few games, if this is what they look like in week 4 I'm not sure if there is any excuses, and it is all on the coaches and GM.
     
  16. The Guy

    The Guy Well-Known Member

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    Can't do 1) loads of personnel turnover, 2) youth across the board, and 3) an abbreviated preseason, and come out and play well. The fact they aren't getting murdered is promising.
     
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  17. KeyFin

    KeyFin Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    Well, its pretty obvious Howard is not 100% and teams are playing keep-away from him anyway. Jones is out so that's a big deal for our defenses strengths....the top two guys are struggling so the entire D is struggling. And past them, you have a very young group led by Baker that still has a lot to figure out. I really think the defense as a whole gets a pass until around week 8...and possibly longer if X/Jones aren't healed up.

    That's not the answer any of us are looking for (including myself), but this team is just too new
     
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  18. texanphinatic

    texanphinatic Senior Member

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    I mean we've given up 52 points. Certainly not worst in the league (Falcons at 78!?!?!?!?!) but that's still a lot. We do have the mitigating factors you mention, but at the same time, we certainly aren't getting anything out of Lawson and Ogbah and our CBs are struggling.

    My biggest concern here is that we need to be flexible. That has always been a hallmark of a Belichick team. While they have their style and scheme, he's not afraid to move people around and change things up. I watch a lot of Detroit ball thanks to being in that market, and it's been interesting to compare Matt Patricia to BB and Flores. The biggest issue people are having with him is that his Patriots-style scheme is badly failing, and he has been utterly inflexible and incapable of changing. QB's have ALL DAY to throw the ball, he's turned Mitchell Trubisky into an all-star every time they play because they simply cannot get pressure. They are just horrendous.

    Despite this, they refuse to invest significant talent into the DE/pass rush spots, and also don't change the failing scheme to try and get guys to the QB. It's the same thing over and over and over and it fails over and over and over.

    If Lawson and Ogbah can't get the job done, Flores needs to do a better job of finding people who CAN pressure the QB and scheming them open. If we can't and go into the offseason with the rush never developing, we can't be afraid to add actual talent. Whether that's someone like Matt Judon as a free agent or Greg Rousseau in the draft, who cares. But you HAVE to get pressure on QBs in today's NFL.
     
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  19. KeyFin

    KeyFin Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    I completely agree- edge has to be a priority in this next draft. And I'd push that narrative regardless whether or not we find ways to create pressure this season.
     
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  20. AGuyNamedAlex

    AGuyNamedAlex Well-Known Member

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    My main issue is that gameplan wise, even going back to last season we seem to always be outmatched. Even in our wins, I cant say Fitz throwing deep balls to Parker in desperation is a superb gameplan. Though I thought our OC did great with what he had and Gailey is a massive downgrade.

    I tried to give my thoughts on Flores as a HC last year, hes a motivator who needs great coordinators to have consistent success.

    Flores isnt Bill B. as a strategist. Hes more of a get the guys to play hard type of coach.
     
  21. ConvenientTruth

    ConvenientTruth Member

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    No one person is to blame...ultimately, head coach is going to get the blame followed by the DC and both have said as much.

    There are a lot of issues with the talent on the defense. Our edge rushers are not very good, they are solid and as the season goes on may get a little better production, butthey are not "take over games" types. Granted, we have not been a position to have a real pass rush as we have been behind in both games. Out LBs suck...Baker is a good athlete but not so much with the football stuff. If it is a planned action (think of his couple of plays in the backfield) he does well, but anything where he has to read and react...he is awful. Van Noy and whoever we line up as the other backer is slow....so slow.

    DBs...some of that is just ****ty communication...and needs to get cleaned up not to mention you have two rookies playing a significant amount of time. Jones going down hurt and the need to put Iggy on Diggs was brutal (I can think of a number of reason why it was Iggy and not Howard), but switching it up would have meant John Brown eats.

    Right now, it is a little of everything...talent deficient, some questionable coaching decisions, 7-8 starters that are new to Miami...some is fixable, but others (think LB) are what they are.

    Coaching matters, a ton, but you still need good Jimmy's and Joe's...
     
  22. texanphinatic

    texanphinatic Senior Member

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    When you look at New England's drafting, the only real rush threat they drafted in the first was Chandler Jones. They've drafted some hybrid DT/DE 3/4 guys like Richard Seymour and Ty Warren as well, but overall the rush is created more through scheme than just a dominant rusher like a JJ Watt, Von Miller, etc. They prefer their ends to set the edge, contain the run, use a strong secondary to cover until the scheme can break someone free.

    It's worked well for them overall, but with the Lions under Patricia it has been a disaster, and they abjectly - absurdly - go out of their way to ignore the problem and pretend it will just magically get better.

    It's that kind of inflexibility that scares me. BB would never accept that type of failure, he would find a way, do something to make it better and improve it.

    All in all, I would be somewhat surprised if Miami got themselves a premium rusher in the draft because that's not the "patriot way", but I hope we are open to it. If not, we need to be getting more people who can effectively get to the QB while attending to other duties like run support firstly. If we go into next season without upgrades and 4 games in having the same discussion? That's definitely a point where I am out on the staff from GM to Coaches. We cannot be stubborn about our failures and must find ways to overcome and fix them, even if it means bending our scheme or drafting for positions they may not have highly considered.
     
  23. texanphinatic

    texanphinatic Senior Member

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    We had one of the least talented teams overall. And while we have upgraded this year, we are still seeing that we are far behind most of the league. It's not really a surprise - we definitely need some of our youngsters to step up fairly quick. Good results on Jackson and Kindley and Jones so far. Tua will be the linchpin. If he's good, that propels us up a few notches and cements our staff for years. If he's not good, we never take the leap and likely Grier and Flores are done after year 3-4.
     
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  24. KeyFin

    KeyFin Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    I agree (about the Patriot Way part) but I think your job as a coach/GM is to draft the best possible player to fill in your weakest positional groups. That's been edge for two seasons now since we let Wake and Cameron walk. And even though we might not draft another Wake-caliber standout anytime soon, that doesn't mean you don't keep trying when that's where your team is struggling.

    It really is that simple- the Pats have owned us for over a decade because we couldn't consistently stop the run. It wasn't Brady or that defense or even Belichek (or Adams)...it was those 5-8 yard runs in the trenches that consistently extended drives and took the pressure off the offense. It looks like we've built in that direction in our offense and that's fantastic, but I don't see how you don't key on that for our defense now that we have a number of viable pieces elsewhere.
     
  25. cbrad

    cbrad . Club Member

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    Two things:

    1) You can NEVER discount Belichick, Brady and Adams when talking about NE's football dominance. Those 3 are arguably the most important factors behind that team's 2-decade long success (far more than stopping the run per se).

    2) We've actually haven't been "owned" by NE recently: 3-3 in last 6 games and 6-8 in last 14 games. It was mostly before that, from late 2001- early 2013 where they owned us: 6-18.
     
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  26. AGuyNamedAlex

    AGuyNamedAlex Well-Known Member

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    Even if he turns out great, I dont think Tua specifically has any unique skillsets.

    If he is successful it will be based on his pocket presence and accuracy. Hes not overly mobile for a modern QB, though better than some, and you arent really running anything for him you wouldnt find in a normal offense.

    That said I hate Gaileys system. Always have.
     
  27. KeyFin

    KeyFin Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    1) I'm not disagreeing with you...all three were critical pieces of those teams. But when it came to beating Miami or just competing in general in the games we won, it came largely from them running the football.

    2) I hate saying this after I just posted in another thread that the only meaningful metric is W/L, but almost every win we've squeaked out against the Pats (minus the glorious Wildcat game) came from coming from behind after getting destroyed in time of possession. Their best games against us required very little of Brady the pocket passer.
     
  28. tirty8

    tirty8 Well-Known Member

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    I wanna start off by saying that I vehemently opposed the hiring of Flores. That being said, what I saw last season was some of the best coaching that I have seen in Miami in the last 20 years. That roster was atrocious.

    I wanna let you guys in on a secret. This is essentially Flores's first year in Miami. You really need to look at this team like an expansion team. Most coaches from year to year, grow with a team. Essentially, we got a new team with a few holdovers.

    The excitement comes because it is obvious that the new talent is far better than the exiting talent. So why aren't we doing better? I have probably written this many times over the years, but it always bears repeating. This is not Madden. Because Player X is good playing Y Role on Team Z doesn't mean that he will have the same role on this team. Flores did a fantastic job minimizing guys' weaknesses (they were glaring) and maximizing their strengths (we didn't have many). A big part of coaching is finding a role or assignment that is not asking too much for a player.

    So how do you know when you are putting too much on a guys plate? Film!!! Guys, we desperately, desperately needed a preseason. This may take a few more weeks to for Flores to figure out exactly what he's working with. I know. It sucks. I really am confident that we will see drastic changes in the coming weeks.

    I am not saying that the rebuild is complete. I do see some big holes:
    -Stopping the run seems to be a problem since the Philbin years.
    -Bobby McCain at safety looks flat out bad to start the season.
    -Edge pass rush is still iffy.

    Finally, I wanna give you a reason to believe.

    Thursday, watch Christian Wilkins. Last year, Wilkins was just a guy. If you woulda asked me without knowing, "Who is the first round pick on defense last year?" I would have never said Christian Wilkins. This year, although he is not showing up on the stat sheet, he has been really disruptive. This player progression of a guy who has been in the system for a year and coming back in a similar role, is something to look forward to as the season progresses. I think there will be more players like Wilkins the deeper into the season we go.
     
  29. The Guy

    The Guy Well-Known Member

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    So far in 2020 the defense is surrendering 0.15 EPA per run play, which would've put it 3.6 standard deviations below the league average for the 2019 season. That's abysmal.
     
  30. mlb1399

    mlb1399 Well-Known Member

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    I know Buffalo had their way with us but we’re 12th in points allowed per game. Still plenty of season to see improvement too.
     
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  31. AGuyNamedAlex

    AGuyNamedAlex Well-Known Member

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    New England had their way with us too. If the Jags had a halfway competent QB last night they would have put up big points too.

    I'm not worried about our ranking, I want to see execution. When you play the best teams they are going to convert a lot of these plays the Jags left on the field.
     
  32. mlb1399

    mlb1399 Well-Known Member

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    We gave up 21 points with 3 turnovers. 21 points per game is good for 10th in the NFL and maybe I’m being too optimistic but I don’t think that is bad considering the turnovers.
     
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  33. The Guy

    The Guy Well-Known Member

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    The defense has been average against the pass and abysmal against the run:

    Defense.png
     
  34. AGuyNamedAlex

    AGuyNamedAlex Well-Known Member

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    They fumbled on the 1 yard line basically because of carelessness, and the only reason they didnt pit up 40+ was they were content to sit on the ball and run clock all game. Also the third turnover we had was irrelevant to any scoring, and the second was was barely any time left in the first half where they missed a FG.

    Dont say three turnovers like it makes our performance better, because when you isolate them at least two had no real way to impact the final score.
     

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