Flashy camera angles and palm trees waving in the wind. Images conjured of neon lights and humid dance floors on South Beach. This is what one sees as the intro to the world that is the Miami Dolphins featured on Hard Knocks.
The Dolphins have undergone a whirl-wind of adversity throughout the offseason heading into training camp.
Whether it be missing on landing a head coach the fan base can revere, missing on signing a quarterback to make this fanbase forget the last decade of losing, and then signing, cutting, and trading away players that make the team or take the team from good to great.
Even though as fans, we have all had a glimpse of the Miami Dolphins and seen the fun-loving and yet stern Joe Philbin, we have to wonder is what were seeing exaclty what went down.
As a fan, we might question whether or not the second episode truly featured Chad Johnson being cut in Coach Philbin’s office just for the sake of TV or did it take place earlier in the day with less drama. Did Philbin really cut Johnson or did Jeff Ireland give him his walking papers officially?
Do coaches as in episode 3 truly make fun of their players behind close doors such as Roberto “ankle weights” Wallace because of his inability to get separation at the line of scrimmage or catch the ball consistently. Would Bill Belicheck ever criticize a player to his face especially if he knew the season would appear in front of a national viewing audience?
Of course, some of these anecdotal occurences lend to the idea that the Dolphins have more problems than most teams, that this glimpse is negative to the fan on the outside and draws in the national media like sea gulls on garbage of an empty stadium.
In reality, what we see is what we get with our closer look of the Miami Dolphins. We see a team that appears to be inept, fails to execute on offense and defense, and as players do not seem to care about being cut from the team.
There is a sense, that as a Dolfan, the Dolphins might have made the biggest mistake going into this season by accepting the invitation to be featured on Hard Knocks, in that the intrigue has not lent itself to being the lovable Dolphins that many of us have grown to enjoy as long as they are winning! That inside the halls of the headquarters in Davie exist bouts of desperation and wonder about how the season will turn out.
Frankly, the Dolphins have conspired to magnify all of the negativity because the producers for HBO chose to make their show about reality. Reality can be pretty, but mostly ugly in Miami. The reality is that the Dolphins should have opted out of this appearance because now, they not only have a target on their proverbial back by the media, but also by other teams.
And that…is detrimental in footbal, especially when an opponent has an edge.
Just ask coaches like Bill Belicheck…he’ll probably have Hard Knocks playing on a loop before every team meeting!