Tag:Tony Sparano
Posted on: November 3, 2011 10:15 am
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Posted on: October 30, 2011 1:35 pm

Cowher: 'I do not plan on coaching next year'

Cowher Addresses Coaching Rumors
There has been speculation these past few weeks that CBS Sports' Bill Cowher has been contacted by NFL teams regarding a return to the coaching ranks. See what Cowher had to say about those rumors.

Posted by Ryan Wilson

The Dolphins' 0-6 start inevitably led to conversations about who would replace current head coach Tony Sparano. One name that came up (because he always comes up whenever there's a possible coaching vacancy on the horizon): Bill Cowher, former Steelers head coach who now makes his living as an NFL analyst at CBS.

On Sunday, Cowher addressed the rumors that he might have interest in the Dolphins' gig (or any other coaching job for that matter):

"Let me just say this. I have not been contacted directly or indirectly by any football team or any organization. It's all speculation and it's unfortunate because it affects the lives of many people that are in the profession. I am here to say to you today: I do not plan on coaching next year. I love where I work, more importantly, I enjoy the people that I work with up here. So I can put all this speculation to rest and if I have to repeat this in December again, I will.

"… It's a tough profession, and I know the speculation is out there and I'm flattered by it, but to be honest with you, at the same time it affects too many people's lives, I like what I'm doing right here and I hope to be back in the same seat next year."

In other news: Miami owner Stephen Ross reportedly isn't focusing on big-name coaches, partly because of how much it would cost to hire them.

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Posted on: October 29, 2011 6:09 pm

For the gambler in you, Week 8


Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Each Saturday, we’ll take the best -- and most clever -- odds collected by bodog.com for the upcoming week and give our take. This is important stuff, perhaps the most important post you’ll read all week. Because if you can’t lose money while watching a game in which you have absolutely no effect, what’s the point of watching sports at all?

FYI, Tim Tebow, a leader of men, had a big impact on Bodog’s business last week. For good and for bad. Said Richard Gardner, Bodog’s sportsbook manager: "With Tim Tebow playing for the Broncos we saw more action on the Denver this week than we have in a long time.  It will be interesting to see how the bettors treat the Broncos this week against the Lions since Detroit has also become a very publicly bet team this season.  Either way Tebow is good for the game and good for the book, even though he cost us a lot last week."

Just to remind you, last week I said you should go under on Tebow’s O/U of 175.5 passing yards and over on his O/U of 45.5 rushing yards. His totals from last week’s game in Miami: 161 passing and 59 rushing. Just pointing that out.

Will there be another game this regular season with no touchdowns scored? (Last week the Seahawks/Browns game had no touchdowns)     

Yes +115    

No -145    

Do the Browns and Seahawks play each other again? No? Good. I’ll go with No on this one.

Which coach will be fired or resign first?     
Jim Caldwell 2/3       

Ken Whisenhunt 2/1       

Steve Spagnuolo 3/1      

I love that they don’t put even put Tony Sparano’s name up there. Like the world would implode before he wasn’t fired by the end of this season; like there’s no reality in this world that Sparano will be employed after this year is finished. I don’t see Whisenhunt and Spagnuolo losing their jobs in the middle of the season, and I don’t really see Caldwell suffering that fate either. But it’s certainly not out of the realm of possibility, especially if the Colts are sitting at 0-12 and 0-13. So, go with Caldwell. Then, maybe Peyton Manning can become the head coach.

DeMarco Murray -- total rushing yards Week 8?  
Over/Under 85½

After the 253-yard ridiculousness he showed last week, Murray is bound to come back to earth this week. He’s also never gained more than 34 rushing yards in any other game during his short career. Although the Cowboys are playing the Eagles, ranked No. 23 in rush defense this year, I’d still go under with Murray.

Will Tim Tebow have another 4th quarter comeback when trailing by 13 or more points in the 2011 regular season?

Yes 10/1     

Obviously, he won’t. But I like the idea of taking the long odds. So, if I were putting money on it, I’d go with yes. Because, as we’ve all learned, anything with Tebow is possible.

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Posted on: October 29, 2011 12:21 pm

Stephen Ross says he hasn't gone after Cowher


Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Dolphins owner Stephen Ross has shown a willingness in the past to trample over his current coach’s feelings by flying across the country to try to woo a new coach to his team.

Ross did it last offseason when he hopped a flight to California to try to convince then-Stanford coach Jim Harbaugh to take Sparano’s place (even though, ahem, Sparano was still the coach of Ross’ organization).

It was embarrassing and a complete emasculation for Sparano, and it undermined his ability to be an effective leader in the organization. So, when, CBSSports.com’s Mike Freeman reported this week that the Dolphins have approached Bill Cowher about their coaching position (even though, once again, Sparano is still, ahem, the coach of Ross’ organization), it makes perfect sense.

But Ross, according to the South Florida Sun Sentinel, has denied going after the former Steelers coach.

"Not true,'' Ross said. "I'm not going to reach out to anyone while Tony (Sparano) is the coach. I hope he wins and stays the coach. Neither I nor anyone involved with me has contacted (Cowher), his agent or anyone around him."

Ross’ statement is laughable because of what occurred last year around the attempted hiring of Harbaugh. I believe Freeman's sources, but if Ross speaks the truth, his indignation that he never would go after another coach in that matter is ridiculous.

And when the Harbaugh wooing didn’t work, Ross then had some advice for Sparano. As Andy Benoit wrote in January:
There are a handful of NFL organizations that have been marred by meddling owners who inject their Joe Fan perspective into the team’s actual makeup. (Redskins fans know all about this.) But Dan Snyder, at least, has never been overtly public about his football opinions. And he’s never gone on radio to share the specifics of any advice he’s given to his head coach. Ross, whose background is in tax law and real estate, elaborated on the sage advice he gave to Sparano (who has over 25 years of coaching experience, including six years working with Bill Parcells).

“One great advantage in Florida as the Miami Dolphins, that other teams don’t have, and that’s we have the weather in August, September and October,” Ross said. “Our players are training in that weather, let’s take advantage of it. Let’s go with a hurry-up offense, let’s wear them down. We’ve never done that. This isn’t the north, where you want to just take it 4 yards and a cloud of dust. I think I look for a different brand. Seeing the Dolphins, how fans want to see them, how we win, we’re going downfield, the days of Dan Marino, the days we all want to go back to.”

Which was an awesome thing to say, considering Miami’s quarterback at the time, Chad Henne, isn’t exactly a Dan Marino clone.

OK, so we see that Ross is willing to fly cross-country to get what he wants, and when that doesn’t work, he’s willing to dole out advice to a long-time football man in Sparano. Why wouldn’t he go after Cowher after the way this disaster of a season has opened? Of course, he would.

For now, Cowher supposedly told his agent that he won’t agree to coach a team unless that team has a vacancy, and since it’s highly unlikely he would leave his TV gig in the middle of a season to take over the directionless Dolphins, a deal, if one is forthcoming, wouldn’t happen until after the season is complete.

When Sparano almost surely will be fired, and Ross can hire whomever he wants without having to humiliate Sparano to do so.

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Posted on: October 28, 2011 11:15 pm

Marshall doesn't need you on 'Fins bandwagon

The Giants might be favored by 10.5 points, but Brandon Marshall still has faith in 0-6 Dolphins' chances. (US PRESSWIRE)

Posted by Ryan Wilson

For not having won a game this season, the Dolphins sure are in the news a lot. After Sunday's inexplicable loss to the Broncos, Reggie Bush said what everybody was thinking: "this team stinks." That prompted teammate Yeremiah Bell to proclaim that Bush "stinks" before Bush could again reiterate the obvious: "I still stand by it, because there's nothing fun about 0-6."

The Dolphins travel to New Jersey to face the New York Giants this weekend and as you might expect, everybody expects them to lose. (Perhaps more embarrassing: only one out of five CBSSports.com experts thinks the Dolphins will cover the 10.5 point spread.)

Miami wide receiver Brandon Marshall, who promised to play like a monster against the Jets two weeks ago (if if the plan was to be a no-catching monster then mission accomplished), has issued a warning to those who still don't believe in Miami (pay no attention to the 0-6 record).

"To: Media When we win Sunday please don't say the Giants didn't take us serious."

As PFT's Mike Florio points out, Marshall says "when we win" not "if we win," and presumably he means it.

But you know what? Miami could pull off the upset Sunday. And before you say it, yes, the Dolphins could win if: an asteroid hits the Giants team bus, Eli Manning only throws passes left-handed, Ahmad Bradshaw moonwalks instead of runs through the hole, and Miami gets 12 downs instead of four, unlimited timeouts, and interceptions are considered incompletions.

But look at the Dolphins' schedule through the first nine weeks of the season. The Browns beat them by a point and under no circumstances should they have lost to the Broncos. A 2-4 record may not impress a lot of people, but it beats oh-for-'11. 

(Also: the Eagles are 2-4 and still considered a playoff team. Clearly, Philly's better than Miami but the point remains: a few fluke plays and unlucky bounces is the difference between 2-4 and the Dolphins' current predicament. Well, that and some suspect coaching, but you get the point.)

It's worth mentioning that in Week 5 the Seahawks came into MetLife Stadium and beat the Giants, 36-25 (and it wasn't even that close). This is the same Seahawks team, by the way, that managed three (!) points against the Browns last week.

So let's just say the Giants aren't mortal locks this week … but it's close. (Side note: we actually picked the Dolphins to win. No, seriously.)

The Miami Dolphins are still searching for their first win as they prepare to take on the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium on Sunday. NFL.com's Pat Kirwan and Jason Horowitz preview this matchup. Watch the game on CBS at 1 PM ET.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnNFL on Twitter, subscribe to our NFL newsletter, and while you're at it, add our RSS Feed.
Posted on: October 28, 2011 8:35 pm
Edited on: October 28, 2011 8:36 pm

Report: Cowher will only consider vacant NFL jobs

Whether it's Cowher or T.D., things can't get any worse in Miami. (US PRESSWIRE)

Posted by Ryan Wilson

Things that should surprise no one: the Dolphins would very much like to be in the Bill Cowher business in the near future.

"According to a source with knowledge of the situation," CBSSports.com's Mike Freeman wrote Tuesday, "intermediaries for the Miami Dolphins have contacted people close to Cowher about coaching the team."

This is what happens when you start the season 0-6. Never mind that owner Stephen Ross tried to get Jim Harbaugh to take the Miami job in the offseason only to have Harbaugh him end up with the 49ers (and worse: San Francisco is 5-1). And instead of firing Tony Sparano, Ross gave him a contract extension and brought him back.

But one way or the other, Sparano's tenure ends this season. The only question is when.

On Friday, sources told NFL Network's Albert Breer that Ross had been in contact with Cowher's agent about the Dolphins gig, but noted that "Cowher … told his agent and others concerned that he absolutely will not speak with any team that does not have a head coaching vacancy."

(This is basically what Freeman said earlier this week: "Now, everyone will deny this because no one wants to admit they are looking to fill a job that's already filled. In this case, the job of Tony Sparano. The Dolphins issued a statement to CBSSports.com declining comment.")

One solution: fire Sparano now and get down to the business of luring Cowher away from his NFL analyst job at CBS. One problem: Cowher has no plans to take a job during the season, though getting rid of Sparano now could give the Dolphins a head start on the recruitment process. (And let's be honest: Ross could name T.D. the interim coach and he couldn't do any worse than going winless.)

Last year, according to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, Cowher said "I am not going to go back into coaching, just to go back into coaching. It has to be the right situation. And I don't know what the right situation consists of."

No idea if the Dolphins are the right situation. Part of that will likely depend on other job openings around the league and, of course, how much Ross is willing to shell out to get Cowher to South Beach.

The Miami Dolphins are still searching for their first win as they prepare to take on the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium on Sunday. NFL.com's Pat Kirwan and Jason Horowitz preview this matchup. Watch the game on CBS at 1 PM ET.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnNFL on Twitter, subscribe to our NFL newsletter, and while you're at it, add our RSS Feed.
Posted on: October 27, 2011 12:47 pm
Edited on: October 27, 2011 2:24 pm

Yeremiah Bell on Reggie Bush: 'He stinks'

Reggie Bush says the Dolphins 'stink,' upsets teammates in the process. (US PRESSWIRE)

Posted by Ryan Wilson

It happens every season: a team gets off to a slow start, the frustration builds before reaching a tipping point, and people getting fired, traded or released is invariably preceded by back-stabbing and finger-pointing. Which brings us to the 2011 Dolphins.

At 0-6 they're one of the league's sorriest teams, most recently victimized by the Tim Tebow's Blinding Awesomeness (it didn't help that Miami was in the wrong defense on the game's decisive play).

After Sunday's loss, there was plenty of blame to go around. Reggie Bush, who was traded to Miami before the season, spoke frankly.

“It’s just embarrassing, I don’t know any other way to explain it,” he said. “It’s an embarrassing loss. Had no business losing that game. We were up 15 points with what, five minutes left to go? And we couldn’t win it? It’s disgusting. Right now, this team stinks.”

Bush isn't wrong. It's that he probably shouldn't articulate those thoughts publicly. Team unity and whatnot. On Wednesday, Dolphins safety Yeremiah Bell had some thoughts on Bush.

Via Examiner.com's Jeremiah Thermidor:

“He stinks,” Bell said emphatically after being asked what he thought of the comments by Bush. “That shouldn’t be said around this locker room. We know that we’re 0-6 and we’re not playing the best but at the same time there’s no need for that.” 

The man makes a point, but the damage has been done. Thermidor writes that Bush's remarks have divided the locker room.

“I just think he said it because he was mad like everybody else was,” McDaniel said. “But I would’ve never said anything like that.”

Linebacker Kevin Burnett, meanwhile, thinks Bush is onto something.

“You are what you put on tape, you are what the numbers say you are and right now we stink,” he said. “If you’re scared to admit the truth, you’ll never amount to anything. So I’m definitely man enough to say we’re not doing things effectively and efficiently.”

Burnett, who earlier this month challenged a beat reporter to "put on some pads, homeboy" after said reporter wrote "Kevin Burnett -- He hasn’t done a single thing worth mentioning in the first three games of 2011, and this defense has gone from good to bad very quickly," can now admit that he's part of the problem.

“I did include myself in that equation (of stinking),” he told Thermidor. “We turn over the football, we don’t get off the field on third downs and we allow big plays so that’s the equivalent of stinking. I mean, it is what it is.”

And what it is is a winless 2011, a lame-duck coach and a feature back who has managed to do less in Miami than he did in New Orleans.

Maybe the Dolphins should've signed Darren Sproles. Not only is he having a better season than Bush, he keeps to himself.

The Miami Dolphins are still searching for their first win as they prepare to take on the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium on Sunday. NFL.com's Pat Kirwan and Jason Horowitz preview this matchup. Watch the game on CBS at 1 PM ET.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnNFL on Twitter, subscribe to our NFL newsletter, and while you're at it, add our RSS Feed.
Posted on: October 25, 2011 11:03 am
Edited on: November 1, 2011 2:39 pm

Dolphins were in wrong defense on Tebow score

How to be 0-6 without really trying: look shocked when Tebow runs a QB draw. (Getty Images)

Posted by Ryan Wilson

This goes a long way in explaining a) why the Dolphins are 0-6, and b) why they seemed like the only people surprised when Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow ran the Tebow Sneak on the game-tying two-point conversion late in the fourth quarter (Hint: you don't have plays named after you unless you have previously done something to make them famous. In Tebow's case, he ran some variation of the quarterback draw approximately two billion times in college.): On the game's most important play, Miami was in the wrong defense.

In case you missed it, the video evidence:

Denver Quarterback Tim Tebow capped off a miraculous 4th quarter comeback by sending the game to overtime, with this 2 point conversion in the final seconds of regulation against the Miami Dolphins on Sunday.

After the loss -- one that saw the Broncos score 15 points in the final minutes -- Dolphins defensive end Kendall Langford admitted that "everyone in the stadium knew he was going to run it." Everyone, it seems, except head coach Tony Sparano and defensive coordinator Mike Nolan. On that fateful, game-tying play, Miami had five defensive backs, three linemen and three linebackers on the field, apparently under the impression that Tebow, who had amassed a whopping 24 passing yards midway through the third quarter, was going to throw the ball.

The Palm Beach Post's Brian Biggane notes that "Run-stoppers Langford, nose tackle Paul Soliai and defensive end Randy Starks typically are on the field in Miami's goal-line defense. But all three were on the sideline in the scheme defensive coordinator Mike Nolan used against the Denver formation that employed four wide receivers."

Defensive lineman Tony McDaniel, who played nose tackle on the play, was more succinct: "We had the wrong personnel on the field, to be honest. They spread us out and ran it up the middle."

He then echoed teammate Langford. "I always knew (Tebow) was going to try to run the ball when they got in the red zone. He just found a way, made a play and they got a win."

And just in case it wasn't clear, Langford reiterated the point one last time.

"We weren't in a goal-line package," he said. "Everybody at home watching knew what the call was. That was obvious."

Obvious to everyone but Nolan. Which brings us to this: what happened? Nolan got the 49ers head coaching gig in 2005 after coordinating up the Ravens' defense. He lasted three years in San Francisco and spent a season with the Broncos before landing in Miami.

The Sun-Sentinel's David Hyde points to a string of "wait, what did he just do?" decisions by Nolan in 2011:

1. Karlos Dansby wasn't on the field for Cleveland's game-winning touchdown drive.
2. Cameron Wake was asked to cover Santonio Holmes, which resulted in a touchdown.
3. The aforementioned two-point Tebow conversion

If you're looking for a silver lining, this is the best we can do: there's only 600 minutes left in the Dolphins' season.

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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