Reporting Tim Kephart
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MIAMI (CBSMiami.com) – Two games into the regular season, the Miami Dolphins are in deep trouble and head coach Tony Sparano may be on the verge of losing his team.
After Sunday’s loss, Dolphins outside linebacker Jason Taylor said some of his teammates believe they can’t win. Coach Sparano didn’t mince words when he was asked about the comment Monday afternoon.
“Well my reaction hearing it is if after two games you don’t believe you can win, something is wrong with you,” Sparano said. “We do everything in our power here to fester in that kind of environment here. But at the end of the day you got to go out there and have success.”
But success at home for the Dolphins seems to be a foreign concept. Since 2007, the Dolphins have a home record of 11-23. Most of those wins came in 2008 and 2009. In 2007 and 2010, the Fins were 1-7 at home. So far in 2011, the Fins are 0-2 at home.
The two losses to open the season are even more worrisome to fans because since 2000, only 12 percent of the teams that have opened 0-2 have made it to the NFL playoffs.
Sparano was mindful of that, but also not in panic mode just yet.
“I mean you can’t keep doing those kind of things. Before long you run out of them,” Sparano said. “But all that being said it’s the second week of the season. We got a lot of football ahead of us and we got a chance to right the ship and we’re going to do that.”
Sparano drew a lot of criticism after the loss to the Houston Texans for saying he didn’t have any answers for the Dolphins loss. Part of Sparano’s issues is at the cornerback position and along the offensive line.
At cornerback, the Dolphins were quick to discard Benny Sapp after he was beat for a 99-yard touchdown pass in week one. But, backup Nolan Carroll continues to get beat every game, most notably last weekend by Andre Johnson.
“The thing with Nolan is Nolan competes his tail off when he’s out there, he really does,” Sparano said. “Now the ball got behind him one time there at the end of the game with, I think it was Andre (Johnson) running down the sideline there. But other than that I thought Nolan competes hard.”
On the offensive line, the group did better in their blocking in the running game. Rookie Daniel Thomas went for more than 100 yards. Still, continuity is needed and Sparano said he’s sticking with his starting lineup unless an injury causes a change.
The Dolphins head out on the road this weekend where Sparano says he finally has their full attention. Luckily for Fins fans, the team won’t be playing another home game until October 23 against the Denver Broncos.
The Fins home crowds have been so bad that the team is trying to tap into the University of Florida Gators fans in South Florida to help sell out the game. That’s not a good sign with home games still to go against the Redskins, Bills, and Raiders.