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Reggie Bush Dedicates His Career Day to the Recently-Fired Tony Sparano

Reggie Bush may have finally found his niche in the NFL. After he was taken with the second overall pick in the 2006 draft, Bush went on to become somewhat of a bust. The Saints selected him hoping that he would have game-changing ability, but Bush never ran for more than 600 yards in any of his five seasons in New Orleans. With Miami this season, he is just 27 yards shy of the 1,000-yard rushing mark and is coming off a 206-yard performance against Buffalo. Bush credits former coach Tony Sparano.

“Just told him that I really appreciated him for bringing me in here, for believing in me, for giving me this opportunity to come here,” Bush said according to the Palm Beach Post, explaining that he had called Sparano after Sunday’s win. “Because if it wasn’t for him believing in me, I wouldn’t be here. I don’t know where I’d be, and I appreciate him for a lot and I told him that and I thanked him and look forward to working with him again in the near future, wherever that may be.”

There were very few — if any — coaches in the NFL that believed Bush could be an every-down back.  In fact, you have to wonder if Sparano even thought he could be.  The Dolphins were high on Daniel Thomas coming into the season before he started battling injuries.  Early on, it looked as though it would be an even split in Miami with Thomas potentially getting the larger share of the carries.  Still, it was Sparano who gave Bush his shot.

“He’s a good coach, and an even better person. Couldn’t be happier to be able to know a guy like coach Sparano,” Bush said. “We all wanted to get this win for coach Sparano today. This win was for him.”

To the Dolphins credit, they avoided all the suck for Luck talk when they were 0-7 and have clawed their way back to a 5-9 record.  If it is Sparano who inspired them to do so, he certainly deserves a little credit even if his dismissal was warranted.

Tony Sparano’s Florida House Has Been for Sale Since January

Cue the speculation. Tony Sparano’s Florida home is on the market. Are his days as the head coach of the Miami Dolphins numbered?  I can’t see why they would be.  After all, he has his team on the perfect path toward winning the Andrew Luck sweepstakes.  Tony is looking out for the future of the franchise.  What more could you ask for in a head coach?

Recent comments from Dolphins players would indicate the coaching staff has lost the confidence of the team.  Miami should have gotten its first win on Sunday, but instead they got Tebowed.  That can happen to anyone, so they should hold their heads high even in defeat.  Still, many believe a coaching change is in order and coincidentally the head coach’s  5-bedroom, 5-bathroom house is for sale.  Here is Sparano’s $1.5 million pad, courtesy of the Sun Sentinel via Deadspin:

Of course, there’s a back story.  According to Sparano, he and his wife have become “empty-nesters” since his daughter moved out two weeks ago and there was a time when seven people were living there.  Now, he says it is too much house for two people.  As Jorge Sedano pointed out to us, the house has been on the market since January when the Dolphins were flirting with Jim Harbaugh.  In that case his job must be safe. Phew.

Dolphins Say Wrong Personnel Was on Field for Tim Tebow Two-Point Conversion

When the Dolphins began the 2011 season with five straight losses, it became no secret that Tony Sparano was on the hot seat.  If Sparano thought the seat was warm prior to Sunday, it must be scorching after allowing Tim Tebow to erase a 15-point lead and beat Miami in overtime.

The aura of Tebow has overshadowed some of the negative attention the Dolphins could be receiving, but it takes cooperation from both sides for a phenomenal comeback to take place.  Tebow has always been tremendous at finding ways to win, but Miami needs to be held accountable for letting the Broncos back into the game with less than a quarter remaining.  After hearing some of the comments from Dolphins defenders about Tebow’s two-point conversion, you have to believe Miami’s coaching staff has lost its players’ confidence.

According to the Palm Beach Post, defensive end Kendall Langford said “everyone in the stadium knew (Tebow) was going to run it.”  Other defenders were quick to throw defensive coordinator Mike Nolan under the bus, saying the Dolphins had the wrong package on the field when the Broncos lined up to go for two.

“We had the wrong personnel on the field, to be honest,” defensive lineman Tony McDaniel said. “They spread us out and ran it up the middle.”I always knew (Tebow) was going to try to run the ball when they got in the red zone. He just found a way, made a play and they got a win.”

They’re right.  We all knew the draw was coming and Miami still couldn’t touch Tebow.  It’s understandable for a college team to know what Tebow is about to do and still not be able to stop it, but there’s no excuse for that at the NFL level.  If the wrong defensive schemes are being used at the most crucial moments in games, a coaching change is desperately needed in Miami.

Helmet smack to Shutdown Corner for the story.

Dolphins Handling of Tony Sparano is Completely Unprofessional

When all the dust clears, it’s likely that Tony Sparano will return to coach the Miami Dolphins and feel fortunate to still have a head coaching job in the NFL.  However, that doesn’t mean the relationship between he and Miami owner Stephen Ross won’t be strained.  Why shouldn’t it be?  The Dolphins have been openly and actively considering new candidates for their head coaching position — a position that has remain filled by Sparano the entire time.

Miami is 25-23 in three seasons under Sparano.  That record is nothing phenomenal, but it’s not all that poor either.  Whether or not he deserves to remain the coach of the Dolphins is beside the point.  While Sparano was still under contract with the team, Miami was courting Jim Harbaugh and setting up meetings with Eric Mangini.  Harbaugh has since accepted a position to coach the 49ers and Ross insists the meeting with Mangini was for nothing more than to pick his brain as a “consultant” who has intimate knowledge of the AFC East, but I doubt any of this talk made Sparano feel all warm and tingly.

According to Pro Football Talk, the Dolphins may end up making a “financial apology” to Sparano now that they realize he is their best option and don’t want to fire him afterall.

The bottom line is Miami’s front office has handled the situation in a completely unprofessional manner.  News is now circulating that Sparano will be “back” next season, but the problem is he never left.  Teams are never allowed to talk to other players who are under contract with other teams, so why should they be allowed to interview coaching candidates when they don’t have an open position?  If I were Sparano, I’d make sure that “financial apology” had a lot of zeros on the end of it.