DAVIE — A disgusted Adam Gase unloaded on his players Friday in a profanity-laced tirade that almost made the previous night’s 40-0 shellacking by the Baltimore Ravens appear tame.
Gase blamed his inept offense that has been shut out twice this season on lax players who don’t bother studying their playbooks and memorizing assignments.
“We’re not putting the work in,” Gase said. “That’s what it comes down to. You can’t remember it, you shouldn’t be in the NFL. At the end of the day, guys got to actually take this stuff home and study it. They’re not going to just learn it all in meetings. We got to find guys that’ll actually put forth effort to actually remember this stuff and really it starts with our best players.”
Gase said it’s not a new trend, but rather one that encompasses his entire tenure with the Dolphins.
“Two years,” Gase said. “Yeah, I’ve been addressing this for a while, so I’m kind of fed up with it.”
‘I’m pissed. I’m tired of this. Tired of the offense being awful.’ — Adam Gase
The Dolphins dropped to 4-3 via their second shutout of the season, which doesn’t even include a 20-6 loss to the Jets that felt like a shutout. While exonerating the defense and special teams, Gase pointed two index fingers squarely on the offense, which he runs, while blaming but not naming the team’s best offensive players.
Gase also lit a fire under his assistants.
“I’m pissed,” Gase said. “I’m tired of this. Tired of the offense being awful. And guys need to get their heads right. Coaching staff needs to do a better job because obviously our players not knowing is a direct reflection on them.”
The loss to the Ravens abruptly ended the Dolphins’ three-game winning streak that had kindled hope the team might have a repeat of last season, when a 1-4 start preceded a six-game winning streak. In Gase’s eyes, all the three-game streak did was invite complacency.
“I guess I look at it like this,” Gase said. “Whether you win or lose, the whole process of all this is about correcting things, mistakes that you make, understanding the why of everything that you’re trying to do and when we win, what happens is, everybody brushes it under the rug and just tells everybody how great they are and then I’m just an (expletive).
“Well, that’s what happens when you go 40-nothing. Now, all of a sudden, all those little things become an issue that we’ve been talking about. But when you win, and you address them and guys think you’re just — ‘Oh, he just wants to fix something.’ OK, well, we’ve been embarrassed three times in three losses. So maybe at some point, what we’re saying might make some sense.”
Although trying to figure out the culprits can be risky, Gase made it clear he’s upset with his running backs. Jay Ajayi starts, and Damien Williams has seen time as his backup.
Thursday night, Ajayi got off to a hot start, gaining 21 yards on his first carry, but his next 12 attempts netted just 2 yards.
“We’ve got to stop trying to hit home runs all the time,” Gase said. “How about take the 4, 5 yards that we’re going to get? It comes down to everybody doing their job. If actually everybody would start doing that, it might help.”
Ajayi entered the season saying consistency was a primary goal. His yardage totals this season: 122, 16, 46, 77, 130, 51, 23. At 465 yards, he’s on pace for 1,062 after gaining 1,272 last season, when he was named team MVP.
‘We’re the worst offense in football. It’s hard to go lower than that.’ — Adam Gase
Twice against Baltimore, Williams failed to pick up blitzing Ravens, hanging quarterback Matt Moore out to dry. That became obvious when Gase was asked about the offensive line, a position group he has put heat on this season for being unable to protect Jay Cutler, who missed Thursday’s game with fractured ribs.
“It comes down to more than just the offensive line,” Gase said. “A majority of the time the offensive line at least knows who to go to and knows what to do. We’ve got to get the other guys to know what to do, too. They can’t block the running back’s guy. Running back, we never blocked the right guy. I don’t even know if we know who we got. So … we got to get that fixed.”
Gase and the Dolphins now have a week and a half to stew before facing the visiting Oakland Raiders on Nov. 5. Gase plans to start Cutler at quarterback and should have DeVante Parker back at receiver. It’s uncertain if there will be any other lineup changes due to Gase’s wrath.
“I’m going to play the guys that know what to do,” Gase said. “Might not be happy — the fan base might not like it — but oh well. We’re the worst offense in football. It’s hard to go lower than that.”
Tracking how maddeningly inconsistent the Dolphins are in 2017
The Dolphins have been one team in their four wins and quite another in their three losses. Comparing it on a per-game basis except where noted:
4 wins 3 losses
Points scored 21.5 2.0
Rushing first downs 5.3 2.0
Rushing yards 100.5 44.3
Third-down percentage 37.7 17.1
Offensive yards 290.0 202.3
Red-zone trips (total) 10 2
Turnover +/- (total) 0 -4
Time of possession 32:07 26:03
Opponent rushing yards 76.3 121.0
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