But Ross, whose team hasn't been to the playoffs since he purchased majority ownership in 2009, expressed optimism about the 2016 season, coach Adam Gase, quarterback Ryan Tannehill, and the renovated stadium being open for the Sept. 1 preseason home finale against Tennessee.
"To me, it's all about winning," Ross said. "I haven't been happy with the performance myself -- as an owner, today -- on the winning side. But this year, I think I'm excited as I can be. I have good expectations, but time will tell."
Ross, who fired coach Joe Philbin after his 1-3 start last season, hired Gase, a former Denver and Chicago offensive coordinator, largely to awaken Tannehill and the offense. Ross said he likes Gase's energy.
"I think you can feel the way he is, the way the players are, the excitement, the passion," Ross said. "I think that's all evident. I'm very excited about him. The passion is there."
Regarding Tannehill, who has a 29-35 career record, Ross was asked whether this was a "do or die" season for the fifth-year quarterback. Tannehill's contract is team-friendly if the Dolphins choose to cut him and go a different direction.
"I'm not going to say it is do or die," Ross said. "First of all, that's the role of the general manager.
"I think everybody feels very confident and feels very good about Ryan. And I think he has a lot of capabilities. You are going to have Adam (Gase) who'll bring out the best in those capabilities. I'm very excited. I'm glad we have Ryan."
Locally, there's been angst regarding the stadium renovation, whose major feature is the addition of a canopy to keep sun and rain off fans. The cost is close to $500 million, all of which is coming from Ross.
Miami moved its preseason home opener, the Aug. 25 game against Atlanta, to Orlando at the request of the NFL. Orlando's Campers World Stadium is hosting the 2017 Pro Bowl and the league wanted a dry run at the revamped facility.
Although many are skeptical of that story, which was backed by a NFL press release, the Dolphins insist the stadium would have been ready to host the Falcons game and it will be ready to host the Sept. 1 preseason home finale against the Titans. Ross said there's no backup plan if the stadium isn't ready.
"There's no alternative," he said. "I know we will be playing Sept. 1 there."
--Miami has five players on the PUP (Physically Unable to Perform) list to open training camp -- running backs Arian Foster and Damien Williams, cornerbacks Xavien Howard and Bobby McCain, and linebacker Zach Vigil.
Shortly after signing his one-year contract Foster, the eighth-year player who spent his first seven seasons in Houston, told reporters he'd be ready on the first day of training camp. Gase indicated Foster's status isn't a big deal.
"It's just part of our process that we're going through," he said. "I know everybody is like 'Well, is it a surprise to certain people?' It was kind of our thought process going in that it was a decision we were going to have to make, and we thought this was the smart decision to make."
The absence of the two running backs and two cornerbacks could be costly. Although players who begin training camp on the PUP list can be activated at any time Miami is now thin at running back, where Jay Ajayi, Kenyan Drake, Daniel Thomas and Isaiah Pead will share carries.
Things are dire at cornerback. Veteran Byron Maxwell and second-year player Tony Lippett, who played mostly wide receiver at Michigan State, are the starters. Behind them are a collection of suspect players that includes Ifo Ekpre-Olomu, Tyler Patmon, Chimdi Chekwa and Lafayette Pitts.
--Gase, who at 37 is the NFL's youngest head coach, conducted his first practice Friday with the Dolphins and said he liked what he saw from a team that finished 6-10 last year.
"I feel like I just wanted to see good energy," Gase said. "The biggest test for us was that we came out and jumped ahead of our install, and we installed something that if you didn't study this summer, you weren't going to survive today.
"It showed me that a lot of guys spent time in their books this summer and came out there and executed plays correctly."