Miami Must Sign Smith or Watch the Exodus

Matt Flynn is now a Seahawk, Peyton Manning looks to be deciding on any team except the Dolphins, Kyle Orton couldn’t agree to a deal, even Chad Henne ran out the door as fast as his feet could carry him. Jim Harbaugh and Jeff fisher never took the Dolphins seriously and used Miami to leverage the teams they had already selected. It’s become obvious, Stephen Ross is more worried about his purse strings than fielding a winning team.

What could Ireland have said the Flynn, “you aren’t worth a NFL starter’s salary, because we don’t think you’re better than Matt Moore.” Something does not add up with the Dolphins losing Flynn to the Seahawks. Flynn will have to compete with Tarvaris Jackson and no team will ever tell a player he does not have to compete for a position. This all comes down to money and Ross is not willing to pay.

Ross talked a good game about beating any offer for Peyton Manning, but actions speak louder than words. Ross has a leash on Ireland and it’s probably in the form of, “make one more high-dollar mistake and you’re out of here.” Ireland has become afraid to pull the trigger because he is afraid to lose his job.

Even if the Dolphins try to sell Ryan Tannehill or Brandon Weeden as the plan, it does not make sense. A rookie is not going to come in and start, it rarely happens and with the rookie cap there is no need to worry about spending money to develop a player. The strategy of developing players through the draft means there has to be a starter here while the player develops.

Miami is going to tell us Flynn was not the guy and Joe Philbin should know that better than anyone else should. Why bring Flynn to Miami if Philbin already knew he was not the guy? No, this purely about the dollars, unless Ross can bring in a celebrity QB like Manning, he is not willing to pay the price to make his team better.

Alex Smith will not come any cheaper than Flynn and they cannot seriously be thinking David Garrard, who incidentally turned them down last year, is the answer. Garrard couldn’t make it in Jacksonville. They will look very foolish when their low-balling tactics leave them without a QB as it did last year.

It comes down to one simple fact, Stephen Ross is more concerned about making money from the Dolphins than field a winning product. Every QB and agent knows Miami will not pay the value of the position and the trips to Dolphin camp are maneuvers designed to raise the price another franchise is willing to pay. Flynn had already been to Seattle, they made an offer and he came to Miami to force them to sweeten the deal. Flynn did not want to play for the Dolphins.

Telling Peyton Manning, 36 years old, coming off injury to name his price sends out the signal Miami is desperate. No player wants to work for a desperate team, they want to know a team has a plan. Miami clearly has no plan. The only two players Miami could possibly have planned for are Manning and Flynn, they could not have foreseen Alex Smith coming on the market and certainly, David Garrard is not a plan.

The QB is the value position in the NFL. Belichick understands this and continually has multiple first round picks because he develops players and then trades them at a high value. Ryan Mallett may never step on the field in New England, but Belichick will get more than he paid for Mallett. The frugality forces the Dolphins into desperation offers that turn players away.

The only thing Miami can do now is backpedal and tell the fans they had intended to draft a QB all along or pay Alex Smith and say he is a better option than Flynn. Smith may well be a better option and for once, the Dolphins could get lucky, but more likely, San Francisco is going to raise the offer and Miami will have been used yet again. At number eight in the draft, who could the Dolphins have planned for, Ryan Tannehill?

Flynn came on the market because a team that knows how to build through the draft, couldn’t pay two starting salaries. Green Bay already had Aaron Rodgers when they not only drafted Flynn in the seventh round but also drafted Brian Brohm in the second. The Dolphins will say they are looking at the draft, but the only candidate that might be viable at number eight is Ryan Tannehill.

Tannehill could very likely never make it to number eight in the draft. Tannehill has started 19 games at Texas A&M, the Ireland (Parcells) formula dictates a QB have at least 30 starts in college. How does Tannehill fit into that plan? He doesn’t, because Miami does not have a plan. The Dolphins are a rudderless ship with a cheap, desperate owner who is in the league to make money.

Are Miami fans going to be told Matt Moore is the plan? If Matt Moore was ever the plan, then everything the Dolphins have done this off-season must be having an enormous negative effect on his confidence. No, Moore is not the plan, Moore is a fall back option. The plan was to sign Peyton Manning and that was because Ross thought Manning could fill the seats and hence Ross’ pockets.

Ross can hide behind the curtain like the Wizard of Oz, pulling the strings of his puppets but the truth is becoming obvious, Ross is all about the money. There is only one hope for redemption and that is to sign Alex Smith, whether that was thought of two weeks ago is doubtful, but not signing Smith will have massive repercussions among Miami fans.

The voice will be heard loud and clear when the tally of season ticket holders dwindles to nothing. Miami fans have suffered long enough with poor ownership and a front office that has not drafted a first round QB in 28 years and not brought in a viable free agent since Dan Marino retired.

The jury is out Mr. Ross, fail to sign Smith and watch the exodus of fans from Joe Robbie Stadium. The ball is in your court, fumble again and pay the price.