Friday, August 26, 2011
NFL ACLB PREVIEWS - #21: MIAMI DOLPHINS
PERTINENT DATA: 7-9 last year; 55 to 1 odds to win Super Bowl XLVI.
BEST CASE SCENARIO (Neil): I like the city of Miami. I think it has character. Sure, that character might manifest itself in the form of a coked out tranny but I am more comfortable around coked out trannies than I am around, say, a born again businessman from Dallas who probably beats his wife and visits a leather boy every other Friday who whips him while he sobs and begs for more because he’s a sinner. So, yeah, I’m always willing to look for the best case scenario when it comes to the Dolphins if for no other reason than I kinda dig their Sodom and Gomorrah of a city. Unfortunately for the Dolphins, their once vaunted ground game has been reduced to shamefully counting on Reggie Bush, a so past his prime Larry Johnson that even Earl Campbell feels bad for him and a rookie from Kansas St. Meanwhile, I love Chad Henne. I cheered him on for four solid years while he was at Michigan. We had some good times and we had some bad times, but on the whole, my memories of Chad are fond. Unfortunately, he’s probably the exact same quarterback right now as he was the day he first set foot on campus in Ann Arbor. He’s never gotten any better. The Dolphins can’t win with him. That’s why it was so crucial that they trade for my man Kyle Orton, but they failed to make that deal and now they’re stuck with nothing on offense but hopes, dreams and the delusional plan to clone Jake Long eleven times and then graft robot parts onto those clones so that they can effectively play their various positions. This means that the defense might have to carry the Dolphins. Unfortunately, the Dolphins don’t really have a defense equipped to do much carrying. Still, this supposed to be the best case scenario and it occurs to me that I have been far too negative in this section, so, uh, I guess maybe that cloning shit will work, the defense will hang in there enough to allow the Dolphins to field goal their way to a bunch of 15-13 wins and they’ll manage to get to, like, 7-9. See, I really am an optimist. Plus I really love the beach.
WORST CASE SCENARIO (Raven): The Dolphins have somehow over the decades managed to escape the shady nature of Miami city in general - the very same sketchiness that is swallowing the U of Miami college program in whole as we speak. I can only guess this is attributed to Don Shula, although he always seemed sort of like a fringe mafioso character to me, including his chain of steakhouses. In fact, perhaps that's exactly why the Dolphins do not succumb to the more lurid temptations of Miami culture, because it's those old school mafia types who don't sell heroin in white neighborhoods and won't car bomb a dude's wife involved. Bill Parcels certainly has that same fringe mafioso nature about him, and shit man, who even heard of Tony Sparano before he was hired as head coach of the Dolphins? But these are new days in America, for all cultures, and all you have to do is look at cable reality TV, specifically Jersey Shore or the Kardashians to know that wealthy culture is no longer able to shelter itself from complete self-destructive idiocy. The old Mafia guard is slowly being replaced by spike-haired dumbasses who think Lil Jon is the greatest and rather than hang out backstage with Frank Sinatra Jr., they'd rather be up in the VIP room with Rick Ross, spilling and sort of drinking $150 bottles of champagne their credit card was billed $2000 for. How does this all apply to the Miami Dolphins of 2011? Well, I'm glad that you asked. Reggie Bush. Sure, twinkle-eyed Reggie Bush in that masculinely cute white with teal and orange trim home Dolphins jersey seems like a perfect fit, but Reggie Bush brings the reality TV self-destruction directly into the Dolphins locker room. Straight injection of new school nonsense. A guy like Ricky Williams, with Oz Guru philosphies and a notorious love of weed could be held in check by old school Mafia. Even a guy like Mercury Morris who just had a straight up cocaine and white pussy fetish and ended up in prison was okay in the old ways. But this new form of self-destruction is slow public self-worth suicide, where you gradually expose your every moment to the point eventually nobody thinks you are worth a shit at anything. And this is a very real new disease that'll affect the entire world, because people under the age of like 25 have grown up completely immersed in Facebook/Twitter/Tumblr cyber-exhibitionism where personal privacy is a dinosaur thought. It's sad too, because it's a self-destruction with no sensory overload, where you indulge in drugs and sex and that beautiful decadent behavior that really gives a man serious insight into humanity in his elder years. You can't really understand humanity until you've dug deeply into both the light and dark sides. You can't understand the perfect beauty of a monogamous relationship, cuddling with your partner during hurricane weather on a Sunday morning, feeling tingle to your soul, unless you've first been naked in a room full of people you barely know freely sharing your sexual organs as well as your legally betrothed's. You can't really understand the simple greatness of a simple home with a small yard and minimal possessions, and how it's all in perfect order according to your whims, unless you've sat in giant gilded mansions that felt empty of soul, and struggled for comfort in abandoned rowhouses while stuffing liquid narcotics into your easiest veins. But Reggie Bush injects an already faltering Dolphins locker room with this new form of cancer, a smiling and magazine-ready cancer, and this team is going to implode. There are other factors as well. Brandon Marshall's fractured mentality really just needs one thing to push him over the edge before he's falling out of trucks like Chris Henry. (I do not say that lightly; I am sympathetic to Marshall's condition, and actually like the dude, so do not think I'm being a dick just to be a dick. I am only speaking scientifically, as I am a scientist.) And there's no real strong force on this team anymore to hold it in a righted direction, especially with the aforementioned Oz Guru gone. So I look for this team to start out competitive but to be a complete trainwreck by the end of the season, fist fucked into oblivion to where they'll be thankful the Bills are in their division to be better than, but even the Bills are at least on an upward trajectory, albeit it from a far lower starter position.
PLAYER TO PULL FOR (Neil): It is no secret that I am a huge fan of the Michigan Wolverines and I am not above indulging in terrible, terrible homerism and if you have a problem with that, well, I don’t know what to tell you, other than that your soul is dead and you need to examine just what it is that you enjoy about sports because I, for one, enjoy the sort of provincial Fuck It, It’s Us Against The World fandom which is inherent in sports. It’s crude and it’s ugly and it leads to things like me contorting myself to defend someone like Braylon Edwards or desperately trying to smuggle Jason Hanson a pair of robot legs or lynching a man just because he’s wearing purple, but it also leads to me screaming like a loon about how great someone like Jake Long is, and that’s a good thing because dudes like Jake Long deserve all the hype they can get. Jake Long is awesome. He’s an awesome dude and an awesome football player. That’s it. There’s not a whole lot else to say there other than that. And while this is indeed a shameful display of homerism, at least it’s honest. It’s pure. And that, more than anything is what we strive for here at Armchair Linebacker. We acknowledge our own insane biases and prejudices. We are not robots but men, men who bleed and breathe smoke and spit fire. We feel and this is what drives us as fans dammit. And so, yeah, I’m going to tell you to root for Jake Long every damn time.
PLAYER TO HATE MOST (Raven): Jason Taylor is one of the hugest douchebags to ever play in the NFL. In fact, he'd be the biggest one ever if Deion Sanders had never been born. I hate both of them with all my blackened heart. You would think Deion being a fairy in a commercial would at least make me think, "Haha, yeah, you fucking fairy," but even that does not calm my hatred. Same with Taylor. You look at that yellowbone ass smiling face, thinking he's so smooth, dancing with the stars ass loser, and you just want to smash it up with a splitting maul. Fuck Jason Taylor.
BEST NAME ON TEAM: Richie Incognito, best potential rap name in the NFL, and also perhaps a sign of the team's mafia ties.
IN A PERFECT WORLD (Neil): In a perfect world, the Dolphins would just cancel the damn season and rebuild from the ground up. Of course, naturally, they’d start this by trading Jake Long to the Lions. After that, they can do whatever they want for a couple of years and then come back as a brand new team named the Cocaine Cowboys or something like that, a team full of convicts and Cuban hit men. It’s time to bury that infantile Dolphins shit. That is a relic of the past, a bright Technicolor fantasy birthed in some acid dream by Walt Disney or some old fucker like that, a fantasy which betrays it as a symbol of a bygone era, one in which the loveable dolphin symbolized hope and a good natured belief in man’s humanitarianism and gentle good soul. But these are strange and terrible times, dark and disturbed. There is no room for the loveable dolphin here. It is a world of heathens and degenerates, of coked out werewolves feeding on the weak and stupid. The dolphin just mocks Miami, reminding it of everything that people on the outside tell it should be, and ignoring everything that it actually is. Miami is a vicious city and it should embrace its vicious heart. The new mascot should be a Cuban stabbing a tourist in a pastel shirt. Its new owner should have scars all over his face from where a rival sliced him with a machete after he caught him fucking his wife. They should embrace Don Johnson and then blow him up at the 50 yard line while the new team of security guards fire machine guns in the air and rob the shit out of all the fans. That is Miami football. Or at least it should be.
PROGNOSIS (Raven): All my implosion talk aside, the driftwood mushroom riverside metaphysics came up with 7-9. That's respectable enough for a team that's far shittier than that, but probably not enough to quench the ego thirst of the demented Bill Parcels.