Tag:Tony Sparano
Posted on: November 30, 2010 8:26 pm

Vontae Davis, Sean Smith fined by Dolphins

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Apparently, Dolphins DBs Vontae Davis and Sean Smith have a tardiness problem.

According to Orlando Alzugaray of 640 Sports in South Florida, via the Miami Herald, the pair didn’t start Sunday and were fined by Miami because they were late to a team meeting.

This allegedly was the third time one or both have been late to meetings.

Coach Tony Sparano originally had said Smith and Davis didn’t start because of conduct detrimental to the team. This was Davis’ first missed start of the season, but for Smith, this is at least the second time this year he’s been held out of the first play (or the first series) of the game before entering for the rest of the day.

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Posted on: November 16, 2010 9:52 pm

No punishment coming for Brandon Marshall

Posted by Will Brinson

Brandon Marshall is a weird dude, expressing his anger at not getting a ton of catches by throwing the ball into the stands (and subsequently drawing a five-yard penalty) after making a catch. In a game that the Dolphins won.

But he won't be punished for being Brandon Marshall the tantrum -- coach Tony Sparano said he had a little "visit" with Marshall over the incident but won't punish Marshall for his actions.

"I think he was just caught up in the middle of the game," Sparano said.

As we mentioned on Monday morning, signs in Miami aren't pointing to "Brandon Marshall being super happy about life," especially considering he has one touchdown all year and Tyler Thigpen is now taking snaps for the Dolphins.

If Marshall is getting unhappy even when the Dolphins are winning (presumably because he's not amassing stats himself), things could get a little awkward in Miami a little quickly. And then all the excuses for Marshall's poor behavior in Denver will be null and void.

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Posted on: November 10, 2010 10:31 pm

And speaking of the Ravens ...

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

FB Le’Ron McClain, who was accused by Dolphins LB Channing Crowder last Sunday of spitting in his face and who denied it before saying he might have done it unintentionally, will not be fined by the NFL.

Though there was video of the incident – seen in this post – the NFL concluded there wasn’t enough evidence to rule one way or the other.

Dolphins coach Tony Sparano is upset, because he believes there’s no question McClain spit in Crowder’s face. Meanwhile, Baltimore coach John Harbaugh is OK with the no-fine decision because he believes there’s no question the incident didn’t happen.

My question: why would Crowder make up something like that? The answer: he probably wouldn't.

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Posted on: October 16, 2010 11:16 pm

Hot Routes 10.16.10: Late night edition

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

- The owners are getting more optimistic that a new labor deal can be reached before the end of the year. Those are the sentiments of New England’s Robert Kraft and the New York Jets’ Woody Johnson. Wondering why the shift toward positive thinking? Maybe it’s because the owners have learned they could lose as much as a billion dollars if they go ahead with a lockout. Strange how that works, eh?

- Seahawks coach Pete Carroll hasn’t named his starting RB. There’s a pretty good chance, though, it will be Marshawn Lynch.

- Coming off the charge by Denver’s Kyle Orton and coach Josh McDaniels that the Titans play dirty, the Jaguars were asked their thoughts about the issue. Jacksonville S Gerald Alexander said no. "They're one of those teams that play to and through the whistle," Alexander told the Florida Times Union. "So guys can take that as being dirty or being a cheap-shot artist or something like that. They play hard. Some teams may not be able to match that intensity, hence they say they play dirty." He kind of took a shot at Denver there, didn’t he?

Miami coach Tony Sparano doesn't care what you think about QB C. Henne (Getty). - You’ve got to love a coach who will placate his fan base. The Dolphins fans really have to be loving Miami coach Tony Sparano. Oh, wait a minute. He kind of disparaged them, when he said this regarding whether fans think Chad Pennington should be starting at QB instead of Chad Henne, “This is no disrespect to any fans out there," Sparano said, as recorded by the Palm Beach Post, "but I could care less what they think about the quarterback situation." Nope, that doesn’t sound disrespectful at all.

- Rex Ryan said he’s a fan of the New York Giants. As of press time, Ryan was still employed as the head coach of the New York Jets.

- New York fans who want to watch the Giants play on TV – Rex Ryan, for instance – might not get the chance. That’s because the spat between Cablevision and FOX is ongoing. Three million Cablevision subscribers in the NYC area could be affected.

- Drew Brees takes to the airwaves and filmed an anti-bullying public service announcement. See it here at Pro Football Talk.

- Vikings C John Sullivan has had a rough year so far. He’s been injured, but he’s trying to stay positive.

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Posted on: October 5, 2010 12:02 pm

Fins fire Bonamego after special teams debacle

Posted by Will Brinson

On Monday night, the Patriots eviscerated the Dolphins on special teams, piling up over half their points as either a direct or indirect result of Miami's special teams inability to execute at a level even remotely resembling competent.

On Tuesday, Tony Sparano told John Bonamego, the 'Fins special teams coach, to clean out his office. This isn't surprising to anyone who watched the game; when a unit underperforms as poorly as Miami's special teams did in essentially costing the Dolphins any shot at victory in a critical home game against a division rival, someone's head is going to roll.

Darren Rizzi, assistant special teams coach, will be tasked with helping the Dolphins not be as embarrassing in the future, as he's been promoted to Bonamego's spot.

Sparano apparently feels that Rizzi, who joined the team in 2009 (and therefore isn't as responsible for Miami's shoddy special teams over the past couple of years, theoretically?) can help fix a unit that "ain't all broke."

He'll need to do so quickly if Miami wants to contend in a tough, tough AFC East, but apparently he may receive help in the form of more starters playing on his unit. Oh, yeah, and he has the added bonus of really low expectations.

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Posted on: September 5, 2010 7:20 pm

Will Allen to IR hurts Dolphins DBs

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

So much for keeping DL Charles Grant, CB Will Allen, DL Marques Douglas and OL Cory Procter around on the 53-man roster.

As Miami selected four players off the waiver wire (Clifton Geathers from Cleveland, Robert Rose from Seattle, Joe Reitz from Baltimore and Jermey Parnell from New Orleans), four of the Dolphins who thought they made the team Saturday were gone today.

Allen – who tore his ACL last October but still hasn’t recovered – might be the most important deletion. He was placed on IR, meaning he’s lost for the year and leaving the Dolphins secondary in a bit of turmoil. CB Sean Smith has not been impressive in training camp, Jason Allen – who’s bounced between safety and corner – reportedly has replaced him in the starting lineup and Miami has released Nate Ness (he was immediately snapped up by Seattle).

“I feel comfortable with the group. I think Vontae (Davis) has really had a really good camp, so I feel really comfortable there,” coach Tony Sparano told the media today. “I thought Jason Allen had a really productive camp. I think Sean’s (Smith) gotten better. I know that Sean had a couple rough go’s at times in a few ball games, but I feel the guy’s gotten better. He’s another one of these two-year players.

“The addition of Nolan Carroll I think is going to be good for us there, and Benny (Sapp is a good addition). I think those people will help us a little bit; they give us jobs at the game and at the same time are competitive corners. We’ve got five corners that I feel like can go in the game and compete. We’ll see. I know they’re young; I got it, but they were young last year too.”

With that comfort level – even though many of us think he shouldn’t feel comfortable at all – that made it easier to place Allen on IR.

“Obviously knowing more about Sean and Vontae and seeing the progress of Jason Allen makes those decisions easier I think,” Sparano said. “Getting the surprise, I wouldn’t call it a surprise, I shouldn’t call it that, but seeing the progress of Nolan Carroll throughout this whole camp. I think those type of guys make that decision a little bit easier. It certainly isn’t an easy decision to be able to do that with a ten year guy.”

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Posted on: August 5, 2010 8:25 pm
Edited on: August 5, 2010 8:28 pm

Miami shuffles the deck

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Two interesting moves at Dolphins training camp today.

1) Coach Tony Sparano moved third-string C Andrew Hartline to the first team and dropped Jake Grove and Joe Berger, both going for the starting spot, to the second and third-string, respectively.

2) CB Sean Smith, who started all 16 games as a rookie last year, was dropped to the second team while Jason Allen took first-string snaps.

The significance in all this? As the Miami Herald’s Armando Salguero suggests, Smith has had a bad training camp, taking a beating from WR Brandon Marshall and other Dolphins receivers and looking disinterested at times, while Hartline – an undrafted rookie free agent from last year (pictured, right) – has a chance to win a spot somewhere on the squad.

The interesting part about Allen is that he’s been such a disappointment since the team took him in the first round of the 2006 draft. Salguero wrote that he doesn’t expect Allen to take Smith’s starting spot, and it’s hard to argue that point, because Allen has never given a reason for anybody to believe he can be a successful first-team player.

As for Hartline, we probably shouldn’t make too much of the move. As Dolphins Rapid Reporter Chris Perkins writes, Sparano had talked about wanting to move around some of his players.

"I feel like I'm a pretty athletic guy," Hartline told the Herald. "I feel like I can play multiple positions. I think I can play guard-center-guard so maybe they feel like they can take me instead of two guys. But I can't speak for them."

At this point, it seems unlikely Hartline could take the starting spot from Grove and Berger. Grove started 12 games last year before an ankle injury knocked him out and he run-blocks very well. Berger is better in pass-protection, but he’s also not quite as strong. Hartline is more mobile, but he’s less-experienced and spent some of last year on the practice squad.

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Posted on: August 1, 2010 4:19 pm

Dansby off on the right foot

Miami coach Tony Sparano doesn’t like to single out his players for praise. So, it really means something when he actually does it. Which is what happened today when he met with the media.

LB Karlos Dansby, who spent his entire six-year career in Arizona before signing a five-year, $43 million deal with the Dolphins during the offseason, was the one who has made a good impression on Sparano.

“I’ve been really impressed with what’s happened with Dansby right now,” Sparano said. “The combination of him and Channing (Crowder) right now when you’re watching them communicate and you’re watching them go through what they’re going through in the huddle together has been really impressive to me. To have somebody like that with that kind of range and them kind of skills I think has been really good out there.”

What Sparano really likes about Dansby is the football instinct he shows.

“When Karlos sees it, he pulls the trigger right away,” he said. “And some people, they don’t do that, they see it, and they don’t quite pull the trigger and now, there’s a missed tackle or it’s an almost. With him, he sees it pretty fast and gets there in a hurry. I’ve been really impressed with that part of what he’s done.

“I think it’s instinct, I really do. I think it’s rare when you find some of those kinds of players that have that ability to do that. He has that ability.”

--Josh Katzowitz

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com