We all know how bad the Dolphins were last year, getting a single victory in overtime. And we know their best players had been unceremoniously dumped to clear the site for a rebuilding project. In fact, only about 20 or so players remained from the '07 season, and every position had an open competition.
On the other side were the Jets, who despite only winning 4 games (2 vs. Miami) last year, were being hyped as a potential playoff team. And rightfully so. Besides the addition of Brett Favre at QB, they added several very good, if not excellent players along the lines and at linebacker. And when they traded for the Chosen One, long-time steady QB Chad Pennington was set out with the trash.
Sometimes you can find something pretty valuable by going through your neighbor's garbage.
In picking up Pennington, the Fins have found leadership, and good decision making. When you lose 15 games in one season, the most glaring deficit between you and the Patriots is the ability to make good decisions. All teams have talented players, in fact they're the most talented athletes in the world. But there are only so many leaders, someone that makes his teammates better because they believe in him. And when the players believe, then the fans can start believing too.
Hey, it's a process. September may be win-less. But as they gel as a team, as they get into a rhythm on offense, as they get a few wins down the road, we, the fans, will see the outline of a solid foundation taking shape. An offensive line that just needs more time together, and we may see excellence. We'll see Ricky and Ronnie breaking tackles and long runs. We'll see Anthony Fasano develop into a great option. And maybe we can even count on seeing some good play from the wide-outs. I like Ted Ginn, and I think he can be special, but Sunday was a performance he'd like to do over. I'd love to see Camarillo, Bess, and Wilford step it up this year, but that group doesn't scare anyone.
To paraphrase the movie Better Off Dead, "...all you need is a taste of success...and I think you will find that it suits you very well..." It may just take awhile to taste is, but it's coming. Fans, you can feel it too.