The Miami Dolphins are well into the preseason, facing off against the Buccaneers in Tampa on Saturday night. And that means football season is in full swing.
And while kickoff is still a couple of weeks off, people are either excited, not excited, or just don't give a crap that the Dolphins are about to begin the first season of the post-Jeff Ireland era and the second season under Joe Philbin.
So while there have been some changes here (new GM, new offensive coordinator) and there (no more Richie Incognito or Jonathan Martin), one constant remains true: Dolphins fans are an eclectic bunch made of wacky characters, fanatics, and the aforementioned people who don't give a crap.
It's unlike any other NFL fan base, really. So, it must be broken down into categories.
Here now are the eight types of Miami Dolphins fans. Play along and see which you might fall under. Winning prize: a 7-9 season and an offensive lineman taken in the first round of next year's draft!
8. The Eternal Optimist Dolphins Fan This is the guy who, although realistic to the fact that the Dolphins have made no appreciable or significant improvement to the roster, still comes into the season thinking THIS is the year.
Our head coach is a lanky doofus? Sure, but he once worked with Aaron Rodgers. SO THAT'S SOMETHING.
Our number-one wide receiver can't catch? Yes, but he's superfast!
Our schedule is tough. Yeah, but the New England Patriots are older, even though they're showing no signs of slowing down and still have one of the best quarterbacks in the game. I mean, Tom Brady is 37 this year. THAT'S A WINDOW OF OPPORTUNITY!
7. The Zombie Dolphins Fan The Zombie Dolphins fan will take none of your criticizing or realistic-outlook shit. Zombie Dolphins fan BLEEDS AQUA AND ORANGE, BRO. Every player on this team is the best player in the NFL. Ryan Tannehill is the next Dan Marino, even though Zombie Fan said that about Matt Moore, Cleo Lemon, Chad Henne, John Beck, Daunte Culpepper, and Joey Harrington. Zombie Fan thinks finishing 7-9 every season is amazing and to criticize the team is WEAKNESS. Jeff Ireland is the greatest GM in the world, until he was fired and now the new guy is. What? You don't know the new guy's name? AND YOU CALL YOURSELF A FAN, YOU SON OF A BITCH?
Zombie Fan REFUSES to criticize any player currently in a Dolphins uniform. And ANYONE who says a single disparaging word about this team is NOTHING but a sack of human shit. Because Zombie Fan knows the Dolphins are Super Bowl-bound every year. And fuck you if you don't agree!
6. The Jaded Dolphins Fan Probably the most realistic of Dolphins fans, the Jaded Fan has abandoned all hope of ever seeing the Dolphins get anywhere near a Super Bowl ever again.
Jaded Fan drinks a lot.
7-9 echoes in Jaded Fan's mind like a brain virus, wrapping itself around the cerebral cortex and embedding its claws into the spine. From this point on, no matter what, Jaded Fan KNOWS the Dolphins will find a way to fuck things up. Start the season 4-0? HERE COMES THE SEVEN-GAME LOSING STREAK! We drafted a quarterback? He's going to suck. We have the eighth pick in the draft? HERE COMES ANOTHER LINEMAN!
Jaded Fan is the ultimate nemesis of Zombie Fan, and you'll regularly find them fighting on social media.
Jaded Fan refuses to join in on your excitement of the new season. And he won't believe Tannehill is a great QB until he is. And even then, the doubts will be ever present.
Jaded Fan hates Stephen Ross and wishes he would be beaten with a pillow case filled with soap in his sleep.
5. The... These Guys
4. The Local Dolphins Fan Local Fan is loyal, roots for his team, and always will. But he's also been distracted by the Miami Heat the past four years. Local Fan loves the feeling of being a champion that has come from rooting for the other local teams the past 20 years. The Heat has won three titles and been in several Finals, while the Marlins have won two World Series during Local Fan's lifetime.
All this winning has made the Dolphins almost obsolete in Local Fan's heart, though he still watches them on Sundays and roots for them to get better.
Out-of-Town Dolphins Fan hates Local Dolphins Fan.
3. The Out-of-Town Dolphins Fan Out-of-Town fan grew up in a city where there was no football team or in a city where his football team sucked, so he started watching Dan Marino and became a fan of the Dolphins.
Now Out-of-Town Fan is an adult, living in another city, and still roots for the Dolphins.
Out-of-Town Fan can't fathom or understand why Local Fan loves the Miami Heat so much. Out-of-Town Fan LOVES to argue that Miami is a football town, even though Out-of-Town Fan has never set foot in Miami. Or the only time he has was to go watch a Dolphins game in person.
When Local Fan tweets about the Heat or the Marlins, Out-of-Town Fan gets superprickly about it. Stupid Local Fan, he probably thinks to himself. If I lived there I'd ONLY root for the Dolphins.
Out-of-Town Fan is really pale from all the harsh winters he's lived in over the years.
2. The Over Analyze Everything Dolphins Fan This guy watches every draft-pick game tape and then every snap of preseason. He reads everything about training camp he can get his hands on, then starts talking about every player's 40 time, how their hips swivel, and how the backup left guard really is being overlooked by the coaches. OAE Fan loves fantasy sports and fancies himself a real-life GM IF ONLY THE DOLPHINS WOULD GIVE HIM THAT CHANCE.
OAE Fan will usually pick out one player no one has heard of and proclaim that this player is a diamond in the rough and will surprise many this year, just to show you how much smarter OAE Fan is than you.
He'll talk about the player's explosiveness off the line, or his hands, or the way he tracks the football. Said player will then either get cut or spend the entire season on special teams.
OAE Fan is subscribed to many YouTube channels that feature game tape of individual players.
1. The Dan Marino-Era Dolphins Fan Most fans grew up watching Marino and remember how awesome every Sunday was.
Younger fans, not so much.
There's something to be envied about the Dan Marino-Era Fan. Also, Dan Marino-Era Fan usually turns into Jaded Fan pretty quickly.