DAVIE, Fla. -- Based on recent comments and actions, a case can be made that no team owner in south Florida wants to win more than the Miami Dolphins' Stephen Ross.
Ross has spared no expense with his team. He’s paid more than $400 million out of pocket to renovate Sun Life Stadium, spent $114 million last season to sign star defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, and also put together a cutting-edge sports science program to help his players.
Ross' passion and spending also leads to high expectations. The owner believes his hire of new head coach Adam Gase will be a turning point that will lead the organization to becoming an NFL powerhouse.
“I think in Adam Gase we have found that person that will lead us to many, many Super Bowls in the future,” Ross said. “I am not predicting this year. It will take time and so there is no big prediction here because I know what you guys want [me] to say. But I’ve got to tell you, I’m excited to have him.”
Ross had very high expectations in the past and it hasn’t worked out. When he hired former head coach Joe Philbin in 2012, Ross said he hoped he had found “the next Don Shula.”
That wasn’t the case, as Philbin went 24-28 in three-plus seasons before being fired in 2015. Ross also had similar hopes about quarterback Ryan Tannehill, a former first-round draft pick, comparing him to Dolphins Hall of Famer Dan Marino. That also hasn’t panned out.
Ross received some heat for recent comments that described the Dolphins as a top-notch organization in every facet except on the field. Miami hasn’t made the playoffs since 2008 and has had seven consecutive non-winning seasons. The on-field product is what matters most to a vast majority of fans.
But Ross said Gase has the potential to change the poor on-field product and help the Dolphins become a perennial contender.
“I own the Miami Dolphins because I want to win Super Bowls, not just make the playoffs,” Ross said. “And I think Adam Gase puts us in the best position to win Super Bowls and becoming the winning organization that people expect and want.”