With the decisions that the Miami Dolphins have made over the past few months you would think that they just went undefeated, and won another Super Bowl trophy. However, with them coming off of a 6-10 season where some newly acquired pieces never really fell into place, you have to wonder if they even want the fans to show up to Dolphin Stadium this season. Let's recap some of decisions that have upset the Dolphin faithful:
March: Trade Wes Welker to the Patriots. Welker was not only a good returner, but he had also turned out to be a pretty good receiver. In addition to that, he had become a fan favorite in South Florida. Trading him away, especially to a division rival, didn't sit well with a lot of fans.
March-June: Screw around with the Trent Green deal. Early in the offseason it became apparent that Miami was interested in Green. I fully understand that they didn't want to overpay for him, but at some point you have to realize that it's likely your two starting quarterbacks from the previous season aren't going to be with the team. The sooner he gets signed, the quicker he gets accustomed to the system and the rest of the team. If he truly is the guy that can help you win games, then bumping up the offer just a bit isn't that big of a deal.
April: Pass on Brady Quinn to draft Ted Ginn Jr. Sure, some "experts" said that Quinn's arm strength wasn't all that great, and that he seemed to disappear in "big games". However, new coach Cam Cameron could have given the Dolphins a new face for their organization by drafting Quinn after he basically fell into their lap. Here's a team that's been struggling to find a QB to build a team around for seven years. Drafting Quinn, at the very least, sends a message to the fans that you're doing everything you can to find the next Dan Marino. Drafting Ginn says that you should have kept Welker.
February-June: Losing a home game to London. On the surface, promoting the NFL to international audiences seems like a great idea. However, many Dolphins fans weren't happy that they lost a home game this season. Though, some team was going to have to be first, and it just turned out to be the Dolphins and Giants. Yet, instead of making everything as smooth as possible, Miami Dolphins' officials have announced that any season ticket holders that purchase tickets to the game in London must show their I.D. when they go to pick them up at Wembley Stadium. That might not sound like a big deal, but the fans aren't happy with it because the same policy isn't enacted for other games, such as the Super Bowl.
Here are a few quotes from Miami Dolphins season ticket holders, the core audience that Miami sells to:
"It's bad enough they're taking a home game away from us — now you've got to pick them up in person?" Mike Dean said. "Let's say I got ill when it came time to go. What if I want to give my tickets to you? I can't give them to you. I have to go on my deathbed?"
"I can win Super Bowl tickets in a lottery and sell those. They allow that," Kathy Harmon said. "For example, with the Super Bowl, we're in a lottery. A lot of people take it [and re-sell the tickets] so they can finance next year's season tickets. Why would they protect somebody for this and not for the Super Bowl?"
And I'm sure that those opinions do reflect a number of others. It's a shame that a team that had such high expectations leading into last season has led their fans to hoping that they don't screw up too badly anymore.