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New Phinzone Article: "Could it Possibly Be Our Time Again?"

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  • New Phinzone Article: "Could it Possibly Be Our Time Again?"

    I just published a new article. Please take the time to read my trip down memory lane as a Miami Dolphins fan.

    a premium Miami Dolphins football fan site with forums, message boards, and news

  • #2
    Very well written and I think you nailed the reason for the optimism. I see the team history in two eras also. But not exactly the way you do. The first era was the Bobby Bethard era. We had a guy who could load the entire roster with talent. We didn't have the OJ Simpson or Terry Bradshaw. But we did have an entire roster of good players. In the capable hands of Shula, the best NFL coach ever, he could always find where his team was better than the opponent's and develop a game plan to exploit that advantage.

    Then we let Bethard go and the predominant feeling in the NFL was head coaches should be GMs. "If you're gonna do the cooking, they ought to let you shop for the groceries". A very wrong concept based in egotistical arrogance. To assume that because a man is a brilliant coach he must be a brilliant GM is foolish. Don Shula started selecting our draft picks and making our trades. John Bosa, Eric Kummerow, Jackie Shipp. Bust after bust until the cupboard was bare. Then enter the greatest QB to ever play the game. He created the illusion as you said single handedly that we were a good team and a contender. Many gave credit to Duper and Clayton, but what happened to them after they left the Dolphins? So the downward spiral in roster wide talent continued until not even the ageing Marino could compete with this team. It was decided we needed to go in a different direction, so Johnson was brought in to replace Shula.

    Johnson was a fiery motivator and kicked this team in the butt, something they surely needed at the time. Johnson's ego far exceeded Shula's, so he of course made all the personnel decisions. Some good, some not so much. The defense came into focus finally, but that same ego didn't allow him to delegate offensive talent evaluation, playbook or game planning to an accomplished professional. Instead stoking his own ego surrounding himself with his old cronies that would be "yes men" to his maglamania. When Johnson and Marino left, the team had no talent, no GM, no direction and no future. So we proceeded down a lane of looking to mediocre coaches, players and GMs to try to restore our greatness. Somehow we were shocked that a dynasty was not built around guys like Fiedler and Ferotte. More drafts, more busts, more no name coaches and players wallowing in mediocrity.

    Then a couple of years ago a new concept. If you can't do your job, you are fired. Whether you are the GM, Head Coach, Assistant Coach or player. There is no salary cap or roster limit for coaches and executives. Pay the money, hire as many of the best as you can find and hold them accountable for their job performance. Maybe the organization really likes the guy, good, he can be your friend, but not your coach, GM or starting QB!

    This preseason we see our free agents living up to expectations, good acquisitions. Draft picks falling into place like they should. Undrafted free agents making the team and contributing. Suddenly our "problem" is in having to cut players who can contribute rather than start players who can't! So is there a reason for optimism? You bet! But learn the lessons of our painful past, optimism is great complacency is not. Best players play, best coaches coach, best GMs stay put. If you fail to perform your job satisfactorily, you are fired and replaced with someone who does. No excuses, no exceptions. Leave your ego at home, come to work to be a part of a something greater than yourself, a winning team, or don't come at all.

    I was am one of Matt's older brothers, one of the people he saw wrapped up in the Dolphins in those childhood memories. I watched this team built and lost as we went from the most winning franchise in all of sports history in every sport, to an "also ran" in our division of our conference of our league of our own sport! When we appeared in that 3rd straight Superbowl in 1973 and won the 2nd in a row, I never dreamed that 42 years later we would still be trying to find our way back.


    • #3
      Great article, Matt. Really enjoyed the read and the personal notes...

      Enjoyed your comments as well, Tim.

      Hoping the next great era of the Fins is back.


      • #4
        Great article! I like your writing style and I too enjoyed the personal touch. I don't want to bag on the other site but it did give you a feeling that there were more than a few people who kept to themselves and never wanted to open up the way that you did in your article. I mean, there are "regulars" that I have been posting with for 10 years and all I know about them is their first name, and in many cases I think that's an alias anyway. AHA I'm younger than you are but not by too many years so we had similar experiences with the team and the eras. We don't have the aerial assault that we enjoyed with Marino and we don't have the running game that we did with Csonka, Morris and Kick but the team that is being built right now is young and for the first time since the Shula era this Dolphins team looks like it's headed in the right direction, a direction that is headed towards the Super Bowl.
        "If everyone is thinking alike, then somebody isn't thinking." - George S. Patton


        • #5
          Thanks guys. I know that many of us who have been fans for so long feel the same way. When you literally grow up with a team it is part of your culture. I am hoping that we can all share a new era together with a not to distant Super Bowl win.


          • #6
            I have a fond appreciation of all die hard Dolphins fans. I grew up in the Bay Area and saw what FAIR WEATHER FANS look like and their are UGLY!!

            NOBODY was wearing 49er apparel until they starting winning and making a Super Bowl run. After that, there was BRAND NEW 49ers gear EVERYWHERE! You saw a sea of new jerseys, jackets, hats, etc. If this were to take place in Miami I am assuming that people would be wearing their OLD Dolphins gear that they had been wearing the entire time they have supported the team. Fair Weather fans disgust me.
            "If everyone is thinking alike, then somebody isn't thinking." - George S. Patton


            • Dolfan1
              Dolfan1 commented
              Editing a comment
              Having spent a lot of time in the Oakland/ Alameda area in 71-72 I can attest to the fact 49er fans were few and far between but Raider fans were just as rabid then as they are now.

          • #7
            You now DF the funny thing is most Fins fans I have met over the years are really loyal and long term fans. I am sure we would get some band wagon jumpers, that happens with every team. But all in all we have good fans.


            • #8
              Great article Matt, I would have to say that anyone who claims to be a Dolphin fan today is NOT a fair weather fan. If you look at the last time we were a winning team, then by defination almost all loyal fans have to be long term. We are the only ones that remember that winning culture.

              Looking at the team this year perhaps, "Things they are a changin'."

              Just in time for me to teach my granddaughter who to root for!
              β€œIt is better to keep your mouth closed and let people think you are a fool than to open it and remove all doubt.” – Mark Twain


              • #9
                Nice job Matt. My first memories is a Csonka shirt I wore all the time because my dad was a Dolphin fan and one of his friends called me little Csonk. I think I was 7 years old at the time so would be around 73 and have been a fan since. Now I am brainwashing my two boys (4 and 16 months) to be Dolfans!!!!


                • Finatic
                  Finatic commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Brainwashing is good! We need future fin fans!

              • #10
                "Having spent a lot of time in the Oakland/ Alameda area in 71-72 I can attest to the fact 49er fans were few and far between but Raider fans were just as rabid then as they are now." - DolFan1

                That is the one and only positive thing about Raiders fans, they are loyal, unlike 9er fans. When we played the 49er in the Super Bowl the Bay Area Dolphins fans were sporting their OLD gear because they had been supporting their favorite team through the good times and the bad. The 9ers fans? Yeah, they were ALL wearing brand new gear because they only support them when they are winning. These same fans are now Sacramento Kings fans and they NEVER owned any Kings gear prior to this this year. I don't know how these people can just hop on these bandwagon and not feel stupid.
                "If everyone is thinking alike, then somebody isn't thinking." - George S. Patton


                • Phintim Menace
                  Phintim Menace commented
                  Editing a comment
                  They are excitement junkies, not sports fans! They will never know the real joy in watching a successful team built and come to fruition. No victory they ever experience will be as rewarding as a Dolphins Superbowl championship would be to each and every one of us!

              • #11
                DM, I couldn't agree more! WHEN the Dolphins finally win a Super Bowl there will be SO MANY grown men crying and it's not because they are weak, it's because they LOVE this football team like a family member and have been rooting and supporting them their entire life. Few fans can say that so they will never get to experience that feeling, especially those 49ers fans.
                "If everyone is thinking alike, then somebody isn't thinking." - George S. Patton


                • #12
                  I know I'll cry. 😭
                  Can we sign this guy?


                  • Daytona Dolfan
                    Daytona Dolfan commented
                    Editing a comment
                    I'd give you a Kleenex, but I won't have any that are dry....

                • #13
                  Great Read! And I think this article relates to most old time Dolphin phans and it depicts the reason most of us old guys are... Very nice! Go Dolphins!!!!


                  • #14
                    pretty much how I have felt all along. I am guarded optimism this year.


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