Ross likely meant: I don't know if Ireland and Philbin are good at their jobs, or if they'll produce a winning franchise. Their record will speak for them. I expect a playoff team in 2013 and if we're not they better have a very good reason, or else changes will be made. But this is a better relationship than the one Tony Sparano and Ireland had. That became volatile and it wasn't a healthy situation for the franchise. Maybe we should have moved on sooner, but I've learned my lesson.
Ross said: “I think one of the characteristics that Joe had – he was probably one of the most organized presentations I’ve ever seen, and you can look back at it and you can say he followed that. He did everything that he said he would do and he’s probably, you guys got to know him pretty well. I think he’s about as organized and consistent as anybody you’ll ever meet. I was talking to his secretary (Ann Rodriguez) the other day and she said she’s been here all this time and there’s nobody that’s more organized than Joe and really sets forth what his plans are. I think that’s important because, when you hear what his plans are, you really believe in him.”
Ross likely meant: Philbin's a rigid, stubborn guy who plans out everything and is intent on building his culture. He's meticulous by nature. He didn't deliver me the offense I expected, but I'm confident he'll figure out how to fix that problem.
Ross said: “I don’t think I shouldn’t be the one making the decisions of who we pick and who we play and what the plays are. You want to have the best people doing that. This is a much more sophisticated game than all of us fans think it is. The more you get inside it, you really find out how sophisticated it is in the football operations. It’s really like any organizations. I know the organization I built that I started, it’s about the people and you’re only as good as the people you have. It’s just not the guy at the top. The guy at the top facilitates it and makes sure it happens and gives them the resources and the ability to do everything to become a best in class organization.”
Ross likely meant: Again, I don't make football decisions. I just write the checks. Hopefully the people in charge make the right decisions moving forward. I hear the plans before hand and watch if they can execute it. Was the product they sold me delivered? I believe in hiring the right people. Hopefully I did that, but we'll see.
Ross said: “I can understand when you’re not winning why some people might not show up. I think we put a winning team on the field, I think we’ll fill up those stadiums. That’s what I’m counting on. I really believe that how important the Miami Dolphins are to South Florida and really bringing the community together. I think once we’re winning that’ll be evident and people will want to be here every Sunday. Hopefully, some Monday nights too.”
Ross likely meant: I understand you don't care about my product enough to buy tickets, but I'll probably keep eating money to put games on TV because I know seeing the games is important to this community. But hopefully we start winning soon and you'll come back.
Ross said: "I saw [Ryan Tannehill] before the game how he went about it. He won the starting nod in preseason and the guy was confident. When you meet him, you feel good. Certain people you meet, there’s not a lot of trepidation that he has. He goes about his business in a very serious manner and he wants to win. I think that it was a great start that he had.”
Ross likely meant: There's a lot to like about Tannehill, especially his personality and how he took command of the team as a rookie. I was wrong about saying Chad Henne will be the next Dan Marino, so I'm going to be very guarded about my endorsement of this quarterback. But I'm optimistic.
Ross said: "I think it is important that you have a plan, you follow that plan, and you remain consistent towards that plan. When you no longer have confidence in that plan, then you make changes. I have belief in the plans that we set out, and we are going to follow that plan.”
Ross likely meant: I'm told continuity is the only way to build a winning organization in the NFL. The best teams have it. That's why Ireland's still around. If he shows me he can't manage $48.7 million and all these early draft picks then clearly we need to go in another direction. I do realize the Dolphins have produced four straight losing seasons, but Ireland's only REALLY been in charge for two offseasons.
Ross said: “This is really the first time I’ve really gotten involved. I didn’t select the people that were here before. I was handed a situation that, for one, I was kind of painted to the wall. When (Bill) Parcells left it was my fault, when Miami lost it was my fault, and all that. I have a lot of respect for Bill, but I didn’t put together that organization. I also felt that I should learn a little bit before I started making moves. Making moves for the sake of making moves is sometimes probably the worst move you can make. You want to sit back and really assess the situation, which I was able to do, so that was probably good from that standpoint.”
Ross likely meant: I was handcuffed by the organization Wayne H. Huizenga left me. Parcells held me hostage and told me to sit down and shut up. I watched and learned as much as I could and I'm finally at a point where I understand enough about the NFL to make the type of decisions that can help the football side of the operation improve. My clock started with last offseason's hiring of Philbin, and my decision to retain Ireland. Judge me on that, not what came before me. That was Parcells' doing.
Ross said: "(I’m) always a fan, and wanting to build the best organization, but you want to look at other organizations and see what they had. You know, talk to a lot of people.... I think the more familiar you become with it and the more you talk to people and you’re watching and assessing, I think that’s how you really learn and put it together to come up with something. Look, what’s important to everyone in this room is that the Miami Dolphins become a winning organization over a long period of time. As opposed to just talking about it. You have to put it together, you have to believe in the plan, and you have to follow the plan.”
Ross likely meant: I've watched and learned, asked around, and I finally feel I know what it takes to be a good NFL owner. All I care about is producing a winning organization that's best in class. Right now that's hard to do with the Patriots, but Tom Brady will have to retire sometimes soon. We need to take baby steps and the next step is get to the playoff again.
Ross said: "I learned from the real estate business that I started. That’s a business where it’s not like a day trade, you have to have patience. You have to realize that you have to look at things with a vision and a long term aspect. I look at things from a long-term perspective as opposed to a very short-term perspective. So, you might be suffering, and you know I hated those Monday mornings, and I still do when we have those losses, but it’s something where I feel we are on the right track. We’re moving in the right direction, and I feel good about it, more so today than I ever have.”
Ross likely meant: I know the Redskins and Colts transformed their franchises into winners with rookie quarterbacks, but that's more Luck (no pun intended) and fortune than skill. I suffer through losses just like everyone else, maybe more considering I sign the checks. But I'm optimistic this franchise is moving in the right direction IF Tannehill can develop. I have one more win this season to back me up.
Ross on the new logo?
Ross said: "There have been a lot leaked, so I don’t know what you saw from that standpoint. We will have a new logo, we will have it by the (NFL) Draft. We’re looking at it, finalizing it, but I am excited about that fact. It’s time for an update.”
Ross likely meant: Why stay the same? Sometimes change is good. I need to sell some new merchandise and make back some of this $1.1 billion I spent for this franchise. Hopefully these designers come up with something better than the supposedly leaked logo.