Dave Hyde of the Sun-Sentinel reported Tuesday, that Ireland asks fans to let things play out, and reminds everyone that we are only two weeks into free agency. Amid rumors that players do not want to play for Miami, Ireland pointed out that they just signed David Garrard, whom he had been chasing since last season.
Ireland’s message falls on disenfranchised ears. As evidenced by the protest, many of the fans in South Florida have had enough of Ireland’s apparent ineptitude. The GM has been on the job for 5 years now, and in that time, every big name the Dolphins have had has been released or shipped out, the latest of which was defensive leader, Yeremiah Bell. Bell was the longest tenured player on the team and was beloved by fans on and off the field. His release, coupled with the signing of Garrard seems to have pushed many of the Dolphin faithful over the edge.
Honestly, the state of the Dolphins makes it hard to argue with the angry fans. It would seem like players would be lining up to play for a franchise that is as rich in tradition, and NFL history, as the Fins are, but instead every major talent that they have chased has turned them down. Even former players are coming out against Ireland, and the Miami front office. Joey Porter told the NFL Network that those being recruited felt they couldn’t trust Ireland, and that he comes across as untrustworthy. Channing Crowder, another former Dolphin, was quoted calling Ireland, “Not a good person” and “Disrespectful”, something the GM proved himself when he asked the then rookie, Dez Bryant, if his mother was a prostitute.
Ireland asks the fans for patience, and claims that he feels good about where the franchise is at this time, but it seems that after 5 years, things should be looking up, not steadily swirling the drain.
As of right now, the Dolphin Nation is praying for the team to have a good draft. A solid draft that brings premium talent in to fill the gaping holes all across the field. If Ireland fails at this too, small protests may be the least of the GM’s worries.