After Nick Saban left the Dolphins in the dust, we felt we need to create a category that was special... something that went beyond the concept of the Wa-NICK-er, and really paid special attention to players and coaches who are unbelieveably inapt.
A Quartet of Wankers
enshrined April 21, 2010
The conclave convened again, to consider JTs nomination to the wanker hall of shame. And there was much debate focused on the fact that JT was out to make a living, while the Dolphins didn't offer a contract. And that's when a novel idea was presented: to induct the "Triumvirate" to the hall of shame, with a special mention of JT because of his hand in this deal. And as the leader of this group, I say "Make it so." We had consensus, and here's the outcome:
Its not clear to any of us as Dolphins fans where the Dolphins organization is heading. Sure, Parcells won it all as coach of the Giants. Twice. But that was two decades ago, and since then, he's had some winning records but has not equaled that success. His proteges hadn't previously held the positions they were given.
- Jeff Ireland was the "V.P. of College & Pro Scouting" with the Cowboys, and now he's the GM.
- Tony Sparano was the Offensive Line Coach / Assistant Head Coach with the Cowboys.
That doesn't mean that neither of them are qualified, nor that they're doing a particularly bad job. But, it does call into question some of their decision making, having not done it at this level.
Its never entirely clear where the lines are drawn with this team, and most people think of the organization as Parcells', not as Ireland's or Sparano's. Sometimes, they'll give it a catchy name like "Triumvirate" but we have decided that there may be a better name out there....
Our opinion is that their decision making seems flawed. One week, Ireland is touting Gibril Wilson as a fine safety. And the next week, Wilson is cut. Sparano says he's happy with his receivers, and spends a lot of time touting Ted Ginn. And a couple of weeks later, the team signs Brandon Marshall, and trades away Ted Ginn.
Their big selections in free agency have underperformed and for the most part haven't stuck around. They parted ways with Zach Thomas, and he wasn't happy with the way it worked. Joey Porter was given a thumbs up, suspended for one week, and ultimately let go; when Joey was released, he was emotional about the way he was handled.
Their draft picks are the exception thus far. Overall, they've made outstanding selections that provide quality depth to the team.
And that brings us around to JT. When Parcells took over, Taylor was dancing in LA, and not participating in the workouts. Reportedly, Parcells wasn't too happy with him. Whether that's because he was a "team leader" and Bill didn't want someone else influencing, or because JT wasn't there, or for another reason, we don't know. We do have JTs account that Bill wouldn't even acknowledge him when he visited the facility.
And so....they traded JT. Now we couldn't fault anyone at that time. It made a lot of sense. He was going to finish his career in Washington. After a year, he opted out of his contract and made a pitch to come back to Miami for a bargain-basement price. The Phins made him wait until after the draft, and then signed him.
He played "out of position" but still had some decent stats. At some point in the latter half of the year, JT reported that Parcells gave him a sticky note with an amount on it and said they could seal it then and there. JT wanted his agent involved, and declined. Taylor says they limited his playing time after that.
The season ends, and no offer is forthcoming for JT. He's patient. They reportedly don't return his calls. The Jets call JTs agent and inquire about whether he'd be willing to play up there. At his agent's urging, he pays a visit. He makes a call to the Dolphins, but again they say they want to see how the draft plays out.
And that's after Ireland said of him: "When we traded him, we weren't convinced that he wanted to be here. All you know is what you see. He hadn't been in an offseason program in two years. We said, 'OK, if you're going to come back, we want you here every day there's a workout. We want 34 workouts.' He did 35. He's a man of his word."
And yet they couldn't even make him an offer? Even though the Jets had limited money to spend being a final-four team? Or, alternatively, they couldn't be honest and say they wanted to move on?
You decided to let the one and only guy who fans can look to as the face of the franchise get away? The fans don't matter?
And that's enough to warrant these three guys being wankerific.
But that doesn't let JT off the hook.
Jason "likes what he sees" but comes back home and makes an overture to meet with Sparano. Word of that leaks out about this "secret meeting" and Taylor gets pissed off. The Phins again remind him they want him to wait.
Now the pressure goes up. You have JT who is annoyed at the Dolphins, because they haven't shown any interest at all, nor made him a single offer. You have his brother-in-law (Zach Thomas) bad mouthing the team after how he was treated. You have Zach's sister / JT's wife who is increasingly getting fed up with the situation. You have the agent, who apparently doesn't like the Dolphins. And you have Rex Ryan who wants to stick it to the Dolphins, and their fans.
Maybe you can't fault the guy, but yet, last year he said this:
- "[I took] A $7 million cut to come home. It's part of my evolution as a man, a person and re-prioritizing my life. I have three kids and a wife. They need to be No. 1, and not my career all the time."
- "Money used to be a driving force in a lot of ways. I could be in D.C. right now, making a boatload of money. But it became unimportant to me."
- "This place is special. This is where I grew up as a man and a football player. That's why it was hard to go someplace else."
And of course Taylor signs there. Was it out of spite? Was revenge a motivating factor? Who knows. But we do know that his family will be moving to NY with him this time around.
Last season when he toyed with the thought of going there he said "It'd be very, very, very difficult. At the end of the day, if I couldn't find a job anywhere else and the Jets called, I guess I'd have to retire or go play."
And this time around, he had an offer from them and no time pressure to sign. Miami might have made an offer. Another team might have come calling. But he pounced on that offer from the Jets.
The larger issue is that Jason has had a fair amount to say about Jets fans. That's why we label him a wanker. Maybe not on the scale of the other three, but his signing with the Jets after saying this, and his decision to go to a division rival reeks of wankering.
Here's a sampling of quotes about Jets fans over the years:
His agent says "He loves playing up in New Jersey there and loves the fans because they're so passionate. He gets a kick out of it. He's kind of said things to incite Fireman Ed and some of the Jet fans. What he digs is the passion. He always liked that. He always wanted to play in front of people like that."
And for that, sir, you can join the three guys that run the phins as a wanker. Your legend is tarnished, and I'm not sure you belong in the ring of honor.
Bill Bellicheat once said of him "There's nobody I've seen that has played anywhere near close to the level that he's at. He ruins a lot of games offensively for teams."
And now he plays for the Jets. What a waste.
At their induction, Bill Parcells was (naturally) a no-show. Jeff Ireland said "it really doesn't matter, because we're building what we think will someday - maybe - be a championship team, and look, we signed Brandon Marshall, and we might get some stars out of the draft!" And Tony Sparano said "Why's it any of your business? Its an internal matter."
JT wanted to have a private ceremony, and we said no, so he declined to come. He put out a press release that read "I'm glad the Dolphins fans consider me a wanker, because I'm a Jet now, and you guys couldn't beat Dave's grandmother."