Miami Dolphins Sign Al Harris, Bench Chad Henne, Plus Picking Falcons vs. Ravens

Thomas Galicia@thomasgaliciaContributor IINovember 10, 2010

ARLINGTON, TX - SEPTEMBER 02:  Quarterback Chad  Pennington #10 of the Miami Dolphins walks off the field against the Dallas Cowboys during a preseason game at Cowboys Stadium on September 2, 2010 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

With just one move, Tony Sparano showed how much trouble he really is in.

After a bad performance by Henne on Sunday against the Ravens, Chad Pennington will be called on to start against the Tennessee Titans. This move was expected by some, feared by many (including me).

Yes, Henne's performance over the last few weeks has been abysmal. Yes, Pennington is more accurate and better equipped to handle this offense. Yes, Dan Henning and Tony Sparano feel better with Pennington at quarterback.

But I have said time and time again that the reason for Henne's ineffectiveness this season has been because of this coaching staff.

You know, the same coaching staff that after a drive where Ronnie Brown rushes six times for 35 yards including a 12-yard touchdown run, abandons the running game completely.

The same coaching staff that seemed reluctant to actually give Henne a chance. 

The same coaching staff whom I called for their heads the last couple of days. 

That coaching staff—Sparano and Henning—who I blame for most of the Dolphins ills.

I said this in an earlier article and will say it again:

This is nothing more than a pure CYA move. CYA of course means "cover your @$$," which is what this current coaching staff is trying to do.

Funny thing is, I blame the coaching staff for about, 99 percent of the Dolphins problems; such as horrid special teams, their insistence on using the Wildcat when its already been proved to be ineffective this year and bad play calling.

The only coach on this staff this year that has made a positive impact has been Mike Nolan.

I stand by that statement, and its even more true today. This is a staff that feels the pressure to get back to the postseason. They don't have the Bill Parcells safety net like they did last season, they know their fate is in Stephen Ross' hands. They also know that Stephen Ross has his own ideas, and that Parcells was never really a part of it.

They also know that the current culture with the Dolphins isn't compatible with Ross' ideas of football culture. No playoffs probably means no job.

So instead of looking long term and continuing to develop Henne, they're going the safe route by benching him for Pennington. They could start a four game winning streak by eking out four consecutive close victories against Tennessee, Chicago, Oakland and Cleveland, which is probably one more than the winning streak they would've gone on with Henne.

While many Dolfans probably see this is a relief, I see this as nothing more than a CYA move. Now I like Pennington, however at this point, the Dolphins have to know that at best they're missing the playoffs at 10-6, at worst they're finishing 6-10. To me the difference between the two is nothing more than the difference between the eighth pick in the draft and the 20th pick.

Its not worth it. This team is going nowhere and would be better off giving Henne a shot for at least the rest of the season, then in the draft picking up Ryan Mallett. 

In fact, maybe they're just better off without this coaching staff. Period.


Dolphins Sign Al Harris

Speaking of coaching staffs that we're glad to say good riddance to, the Dolphins have waived Jason Allen and brought in former Green Bay Packers Pro Bowl corner Al Harris.

Allen started off the year well, but ever since the Jets game where he slipped and allowed Braylon Edwards' touchdown then later found himself out of position on a pass that he could've picked off, his performance has been awful.

With Harris the Dolphins get a 14-year veteran who's made it to two Pro Bowls and was a 2007 All-Pro selection.

Harris started off the year on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list after he tore his knee up during a game against the San Francisco 49ers last year. He had interest from the Vikings, Lions and Texans before deciding to sign with the Dolphins, who is his hometown team.

Harris was born in Pompano Beach, Fl and went to Pompano Beach-Ely High School. He still lives in the South Florida area during the off season.



Baltimore (+1) over ATLANTA

Thursday night games are usually the hardest to pick, and this one is no exception. A potential Super Bowl preview that's "For the Birds" (rim shot), the Falcons are great at home, where Matty Ice is a career 17-1 inside the Georgia Dome. 

However, and even though I was proven wrong a couple of weeks ago, I still stick to may AFC-NFC rule. Plus the Ravens seem to have a more complete team than the Falcons. Expect Ryan's record to be 17-2 at home come Thursday night.

Ravens 28 - Falcons 24.

More Picks to come Thursday Night. Follow Thomas Galicia on twitter, @thomasgalicia.


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