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Case Closed: Stephen Ross Decides No Punishment For Ireland

With the PR mess involving the Ireland-Bryant saga, finally coming to a conclusion, well at least in Miami, the Dolphins can finally move on.

Owner Stephen Ross declared today that there will be no punishment for general manager Jeff Ireland after reports surfaced that Ireland asked rookie Dez Bryant whether his mom was a prostitute or not.

Thank god this is finally over! While the rest of the media jump at the chance to get a peak inside the Dolphins business offices, I really don’t care about this whole spiel. Ireland said what he said, but he also apologized. As far as I’m concerned, Ireland was doing his job to see how Bryant would react to the question.

Obviously we all know how Bryant reacted. He went and told on the Dolphins to the media, and instead of making everything better, the whole world can now speculate whether Bryant’s mother is a prostitute, and also knows her criminal record. As we can see, Ireland was the chief cause of this (I’m being sarcastic of course).

The real reason for this escalation is Michael Silver, of Yahoo Sports. He first broke the story early this week, and the Dolphins have never heard the end of it, and even after Ireland apologized to Bryant, he still continues to run his mouth, and the topic continues to just get worse.

A little note for Dez here: The Dolphins obviously did not like what they saw in your attitude in their private interviews, or they would not have given up two 2nd round picks for Brandon Marshall. That is how big of a character issue you seemed to be for them. Yu are a wild card to them, and that means you slide in the draft. Don’t blame this on anyone else but yourself. Just because the Fins didn’t like what they saw in you does not mean you should go tattle to the media to make yourself feel better. This shows that the Dolphins were right about you after all. Focus on the football field and your career right now, instead of the media issues that seem to follow you everywhere you go. You’ll need all the focus you can get to succeed in the NFL, you can’t just slide by on your talent anymore.

Some may ask how this is mostly Silver and Bryant’s fault for this PR mess? Well, let me explain. Even though the question was abrasive, and obnoxious, I have no problem with it being asked. For a business that pays young men millions of dollars to play a game of football for the next 15 years, I would say that scouts and general managers should be able to ask whatever questions they feel like. They are about to make a big investment in a player, and the player should be ready to show this team that they got  the goods to succeed in the NFL. Bryant did not show that, and may have gotten the hint that the Fins were not interested in him.

The media escalated this mess, not Ireland.

But despite my stance on this dilemma, I do think that the Fins PR staff, and front office in general need to change the way they go about business.

The Dolphins brand name is being dragged through the mud at this point.

They will not allow former greats to have farewell press conferences, they will not allow former greats to sign a one day contract so they can retire as a member of their team. Heck, they will not even allow press conferences for incoming players, and now this mess.

Our front office is known to be secretive, and there is nothing wrong with that. But when the front office starts to disrespect Dolphins legends (Jason Taylor, and Zach Thomas), they deserve all of the bad karma they can get.

Maybe this will show the Dolphins a thing or two about manners, and how to go about business in this new era of the NFL. Not all players are as mentally tough as they used to be. They are not used to being bullied by people, as they are the stars that can do no wrong.

The Dolphins are now the bad guys in the NFL, not the Jets. The Dolphins are now the team that will make incoming free agents and players think twice before coming to Miami. While some think highly of the Dolphins and how they do things, the word on the street is that the Dolphins won’t stray from their plan, and if you are not in it, and will not agree to be on the team on their terms, then you won’t be on the team at all.

It is this approach, the “our way or the highway” approach, that strains relationships with the fans. Personally, this act is growing old. I know that these guys know what they’re doing on the football side of things, but what about the more personal, and business side of things?

As long as the Dolphins keep putting a winning product on the field I am fine, but what will happen to this regime when things start to turn for the worse? Will everyone be as happy then?

This is why the front office needs to stop their act now, after learning this lesson on getting burned by a spurned rookie. Eventually the owner, and everyone around you will give up, and you will find yourself on the way out of Miami.

Let’s just hope this does not happen, and that Jeff Ireland and the rest of the front office learn their lesson.  While I’m defending them in the Dez Bryant mess, I am also warning of them of what may come if they don’t stop their stubborn, abrasive approach in the near future.


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