As we know, this season has been far from easy as a Miami Dolphins fan. Maybe this is therapy, maybe I just want to feel normal by having other people empathise with me. Either way, I’m going to share the top 5 feelings I feel right now about my Dolphins.
Dolphins fans are Disappointed
On the back of two seasons where we had outperformed expectations, it seemed the bar was set a lot higher this year. Many pundits firmly believed anything but the playoffs would be a disappointment. Some even believed we would win a playoff game for the first time in over 20 years.
The season has gone horrendously thus far. We find ourselves at 1-6 and we could easily be winless, barring that late New England fumble. To be so, so far below what we had hope and, for many, expected, has been a huge disappointment.
Dolphins fans are Embarrassed
With all the Deshaun Watson rumours, it feels pretty embarrassing. I don’t want my team to be linked to someone who has so many alleged question marks around his character and his actions. I want my team to be above that and conduct themselves with dignity. When Brian Flores took over as Head Coach, we watched film of him returning to his childhood home, seeing a guy who had fought against so much adversity to succeed in his career. I believed he would lead the team with a brand of toughness mixed with high morals. All the talk of drafting high character guys really got me believing this was a different rebuild to any other.
However, the very fact that the franchise has not completely shut down these rumours and distanced itself from a player with potential civil and criminal allegations being raised against him was highly worrying and embarrassing to me when I had truly believed (and bragged to my friends) they were looking at a unique NFL franchise that would achieve success by doing things the right way.
The treatment of Tua as a human being has been pretty disgusting to me. The public support they have given him has been so luke-warm and non-committal that I would not have blamed Tua for letting it affect his confidence on the field, or his composure off of it. Credit to Tua that he has remained so humble and calm in spite of this provocation from the franchise that courted him so fervently just 18 months ago. I’m embarrassed that my team has allowed their reputation to be so badly sullied by their handling of this potential trade.
Dolphins fans are Confused
So many things have confused me about the Front Office and coaching decisions. I have no answers to their logic so I will leave this as a series of unanswered and unanswerable questions.
What has happened to our defence?
What is the philosophy of our offence?
Why doesn’t the offence stick to things that work?
Why draft Jaylen Waddle then use him so differently to how you said you would use him?
Why draft Austin Jackson and Noah Igbinoghine?
Why draft Tua 5th overall if you don’t rate him highly enough to allow him enough time for a full evaluation of his abilities?
Why allow the Watson rumours to continue if Tua is the QB you say you want to lead the franchise?
Why not allow Mike Gesicki more than around 65% of the offensive snaps when he is clearly a fantastic and reliable play maker?
Why sign huge offensive lineman then abandon the run game so quickly?
Why not draft a running back?
Why have the turnovers dried up?
Why has the discipline gone?
Why are Jason Sanders, Xavien Howard, Jerome Baker and others not playing anywhere near as well as last year?
The list could go on.
Dolphins fans are Tired
This current team feels like yet another false dawn. I had started to believe that we would be a relevant team finally, after so many years of being a nothing franchise. I’m tired of it. Tired of seeing my team fail to move the football when so many other teams always seem to make it look so easy. I’m tired of not being able to challenge the best teams in the AFC or in the NFL as a whole. I’m tired of being down trodden by other teams within the AFC East.
Just when it looks like the Patriots are no longer the dominant force, it’s now the Bills who are ruling our division. I just want the Dolphins to be relevant and be feared by other teams. We managed it for a season last year, now we are back to teams like the Giants thinking they have a win on their schedule to look forward to when they play us.
Dolphins fans are Hopeful
Despite ALL of the above, somehow I still remain cautiously optimistic and hopeful. Despite my reservations about the moral decisions around trading for Watson, it can’t be denied that he is an elite level QB. It would be exciting to see what he would bring to Miami.
If Tua remains the guy, he really has shown me enough improvement, strength of character and skill to make me feel that the future could be amazing with him as our QB for the next 10+ years.
They say it’s the hope that kills you. This season very nearly finished me off but I’m in it for the long haul.