Staying the course

The Dolphins' dismal season reached a new low with Monday night's 41-14 loss to the Jets and the playoffs now appear out of reach, but that doesn't mean Coach Dave Wannstedt thinks the time has come to start planning for the future. He made that very clear when he addressed the media on Tuesday.

"We're going to just try to continue to do what we have to do to win this football game," Wannstedt said, referring to Sunday's upcoming game against the Arizona Cardinals. "There's been no change in any agenda. That's the commitment that we have to have to the players in that locker room, and that's what we'll continue to do.

"I know that we haven't had the success playing under the current circumstances, but I still believe that my main responsibility is to make sure that the guys in the locker room know that I'm going to do everything I can to give us the best chance to win."

That means that Jay Fiedler once again will start at quarterback for the Dolphins, even though the feeling is that the Dolphins need to find out at some point what they've got in A.J. Feeley.

It also means that Vernon Carey again will be a backup on an offensive line that has badly struggled for pretty much the entire season.

The one change could come at outside linebacker, where it's looking like Junior Seau might have a torn pectoral muscle, an injury that could sideline him for the rest of the season.

Wannstedt said he would meet with Seau on Wednesday morning and then have some "definite information."

If Seau indeed is out, Wannstedt said second-year player Eddie Moore, the team's top draft pick, would start at weakside linebacker.

In other news:

-- Kicker Olindo Mare will continue to be evaluated on a weekly basis and Matt Bryant will remain with the team until Mare is ready for game action.

-- Wannstedt took great offense Monday night when he was asked by a TV reporter whether his players had quit against the Jets. He again addressed the issue on Tuesday. "The effort was there," Wannstedt said. "I was very pleased with the effort. The last five or six plays of the game, I mean, Zach Thomas and Bryan Robinson, Jason Taylor is running 30 yards down the field to drag a guy down on a screen play. Those guys played as hard Monday night as they did. We got blocked, we made some mental mistakes. That was the difference in them executing and moving the football. It wasn't effort at all."

ABC analyst John Madden criticized the Dolphins for throwing the ball down 34-7 when they took over at their 43-own yard line with 1:12 left. The Dolphins ended up scoring on the last play of the game to turn a 41-7 margin into the 41-14 final score. When asked why he ran a two-minute offense down by 34 points, Wannstedt was quick and to the point: "Because we wanted to score. We wanted to give the guys an opportunity to make some plays and score."


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