It’s not quite a perfect season, but…

Unbeknownst to me, the Dolphins have been on quite a roll.

Six in a row to end the season, a win in New England, their first undefeated December since 1985, one game out of the playoff picture. Not bad for a team that was 3-7 and looking forward to a nice draft pick this summer.

And through all of this, I barely kept the team alive in the back of my mind. I had written the season off as another failed experiment – a decent defense with some good young offensive tools, marred by the media hoopla surrounding Ricky Williams, the unexceptional play of their piece-mail offensive line, and a revolving-door quarterbacking crew that seemed to consist only of ex-Vikings second-stringers.

Really, the Dolphins season was over for me when the NBA season started. I turned all of my professional sports attention to the hard court, where I’m currently watching the Pacers make a mockery of the season while failing to trade the biggest loony in the history of basketball.

But now I realize that Nick Saban and the Miami Dolphins turned themselves around to end the season on a high note. After suffering the first losing season in 20 years in 2004 (and on the verge of another one in 2005) the team stepped up, brandished their sports clichés, and reeled off six wins to finish 9-7. Not the greatest record, but then again this isn’t the greatest team. Not now, anyway.

Give NFL Coach of the Year to Saban. All of us Miami fans appreciate the great job he’s done in reviving a team that’s been mired in mediocrity for the past ten years. A franchise with the history of the Dolphins is bound to have a few bad years. Thankfully, they’ve only had one.

And things look to be on their way up.

This was lovingly handwritten on January 2nd, 2006