Monday, December 17, 2012
Inside the mind of AFC East coaches
By James Walker
Week 15 got off to an interesting start. The Miami Dolphins (6-8) won, while the Buffalo Bills (5-9) and New England Patriots (10-4) both lost.
Here is a peek of what I think is going on inside the mind of AFC East head coaches:
Joe Philbin, Miami Dolphins: I'm glad we finally got closure on this Chad Henne situation. It wasn't an issue with me, but our players really wanted to beat him after holding the franchise back the past few years. It's good for Ryan Tannehill to beat Henne, too. Our guy is better. Now, everyone can move on. We're 6-8, which isn't bad. ESPN.com AFC East blogger James Walker predicted we wouldn’t win more than six games this year. So I really want to win next week so I can remind him of that prediction. I didn't like how we played in Buffalo last month and my first order of business is to show my players the tape of that game. That should be a wakeup call that we need to focus and prepare well this week.
Chan Gailey, Buffalo Bills: I will never admit this publicly, but I'm running out of answers. I was perplexed yesterday, and you could see it in my face on the sidelines. I really don't know why my team did not bother to show up yesterday in Toronto. The Seahawks are good, but they’re not 50-17 good. Seattle's zone-read option was too much, and maybe I didn't prepare my team enough for it in practice. General manager Buddy Nix is backing me publicly, but honestly I'm worried. A performance like this is indefensible. I just need to win these last two games and let the chips fall where they may. A 7-9 record would be one game better than last year. That’s something I can at least leverage to convince Buddy and Bills fans to allow me one more year to right the ship.
Bill Belichick, New England Patriots: We lost. We didn't execute. It's on to the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Rex Ryan, New York Jets: Boy, I still can't believe we have a good chance to make the playoffs. This reminds me of 2009 when I told the media we were out of it, but we made the postseason anyway and did very well. I'm done with public guarantees, but privately I think we have a good chance to win out. Our players believe it, too. Tonight will be a tougher-than-expected game against the Tennessee Titans. I want to batter and baffle quarterback Jake Locker so bad, I can taste it. I drew up a great game plan with the extra day of preparation and Locker won't know what hit him. I expect at least two turnovers from my defense and that should get our offense some points. My twin brother, Rob, took care of the Pittsburgh Steelers for me. I will send him a nice Christmas gift this year. Usually, I just buy him a tie.