Ladies and gentlemen, it has finally happened. The Miami Dolphins have fired much maligned GM Jeff Ireland. Well, technically the two parties have “mutually agreed” to part ways. This firing comes just one day after the firing of OC Mike Sherman. Stephen Ross was unhappy with the results of last season, and he is now letting it be known.
After five mediocre seasons and a coaching change and two banners paid for by fans flown above Sun Life Stadium reading “Fire Ireland,” Ross and Ireland have finally realized that it was time for Ireland to step down.
Ireland started off his career looking to be a promising GM under the wing of Bill Parcells. He was, despite what some people believe, a part of transforming the Dolphins from worst to first (1-15 in 2007 to 11-5 in 2008). Those times feel decades ago after a Dolphins team Ireland assembled yet again failed to reach the playoffs.
All three times that Ireland-built teams were in position to make the playoffs (excluding 2008), they ended the season on a losing streak. Whether it was coaching or lack of talent, something was always missing while Ireland was GM.
Ireland was also reportedly not on friendly terms with Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin. It was felt that the combination of the two was not going to work out, and it appears Philbin, who has the shorter record of mediocrity, got the benefit of the doubt from Mr. Ross.
With Ireland gone, the Dolphins can look ahead to the future. Getting a GM who understands the west coast offense, along with an offensive coordinator of the same sort, is now priority No. 1 for Ross and Philbin. The Dolphins were patient with the decisions to let Sherman and Ireland go, and you can expect them to be patient when finding their replacements.