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The new starting center: Jake Grove? [Update]

The Herald's Jeff Darlington is reporting Oakland offensive lineman Jake Grove is in town for a free agency visit that will officially begin Tuesday. I am reporting that barring a last-minute snag in negotiations, Grove will be signed by tomorrow.

That will signal the Dolphins successfully finding the starting center they've been searching for since the end of the 2008 season. Although Grove and Samson Satele would be competing for the starting job, once you see the numbers on the Grove contract, you will understand Miami expects him to be the starter.

The Dolphins, I am told, were quite impressed by Grove's work as they prepared for their 17-15 victory over Oakland last season. [UPDATE: Grove did not play in that game because of a calf injury and, in fact missed four games in 2008. Previously I wrote Grove had played against Miami.]  

Grove, 29, is a free agent because he met playing time incentives in his contract and the final year of his deal was voided. The Raiders have been trying to re-sign him, obviously with no luck so far.

"We want him back, obviously," Raiders coach Tom Cable said Feb. 19 when asked if he was comfortable with the player's status. "So if he's not there or until it's resolved I'm not comfortable at all."

Cable's discomfort could grow substantially in the next 24 hours.

If the Dolphins are able to lock up the 6-4 and 300 pound Grove, consider him your starting center for the 2009 season. The Grove signing will not come cheaply which is the reason the Dolphins needed to save every penny of the $3.25 million they added in cap space with the termination of Vonnie Holliday's contract.

The Dolphins hated to see Holliday leave. But they couldn't see themselves paying a $1.5 million roster bonus to a player that played 56 percent of the snaps in 2008 and was probably going to play a lower percentage in 2009.

And now they use that added space for a center who could be in on 100 percent of the offensive snaps in 2009 if he stays healthy. It is a good trade-off if you ask me.


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Nice work Armando

I wouldn't be surprised if that is why they did not want to pay all that money to Jason Brown

I bet a CB is next

In the TRIFECTA I trust

Go Fins

Grove should be made aware Coconut Grove is in Miami.
Would he be a good pickup?

great news hopefully he will be signed
see guys BP knows wat he's doing


I hope so.

never heard of him, another one of those 2cnd tier free agents that the trifecta was predicted to go after...oh well, more O-line depth, thats never a bad thing

NICE work Armando... you guys at the Herald have been money since the season ended. A little more accurate than the *other* papers too. Good stuff.

jason taylor got released by the redskins. Maybe he'll be a dolphin again

Allright, we are getting bigger and badder on the line. We need a big bad nose tackle another pass rusher and then cb's and sprinkle in a big wide receiver.

Hey Armando wasn't he a 1st round pick of the raiders at one time

He was a 2nd rd pick by the Raiders...has had some durability issues...but he is a good hard nosed football player. Also JT can only play in a 4-3...he will not be back in Miami.

Excellent reporting Armando. You obviously are using information from people that are not talking to other reporters.

Grove is a MAJoR upgrade from Satale. It drove me nuts to see him get whipped by Vince Wilfork and the Baltimore nose tackle.

Igor Olshanksky.... next

This takes the sting out of losing a locker room presence like Holliday. I appreciate the perspective you bring to the story, Mando.

Nice grab Armando. I'd be interested to listen in on a call between Parcells and Al Davis.

Grove is known to be more of a finesse player but it looks like he is a good competitor. I guess if we like him and our coach is a former O-Line coach he should be able to help us. Some sites are suggesting he be a decent guard also so it gives us another guy w/ flexibility.


alienzfin , did you read my post on page 5 of the coals in lavernius stocking blog ?. I don't feel like writing it again . Please read and respond.


I would check with your sources again. How can Miami have been impressed with Grove during the 17-15 game when Grove was inactive with an injury?

I will be interested to see what Grove's contract is. I bet it will be less than the $48 million the Jets paid for Bart Scott and now he's going to be in Bart Scott's grill on every play two games per year. That's called a bargain.

Era boy MANDO!!! you are on fuego today! Better than the Berger day if you ask me...

What the French with Jason Taylor!!!! It makes no sense to me that a veteran player that loved football so much and did so much for the community, suddenly became God (in his mind). Doesn't want to work out so they cut his a*#!! What a shame....

I'm now officially on the Sean Smith Bandwagon! Get him with our 1st pick in the 2cnd and let him compete with J. Allen and Nate Jones for the other corner spot!


I don't know anything about Grove.. Can you compare him with someone of J Brown's caliber?

Kindry, grove is the same size as satele and not much of a upgrade. He always misses games due to injury and i wouldn't get to excited. Miami is still going to draft a center early.

FLPD . I hate to break it to you , but grove isn't a MAJOR upgrade over satele , LOL . Sure he competes, but he's the same size as satele and is more finesse than strong. He's always injured.

Do you think since the Ravens lost Brown and Setele is one of Cams boys they would give up their 2nd rounder for him????

Nublar7: I did what you suggested and talked to my source again. The correction is on the update. Thanks for your help.

The Dolphins, I am told, were quite impressed by Grove's work as they prepared for their 17-15 victory over Oakland last season. [UPDATE: Grove did not play in that game because of a calf injury and, in fact missed four games in 2008. Previously I wrote Grove had played against Miami.]



I am surprised you didn't just delete this like all the other unverified crap you post. Whatever happened to the "Tuna was going to leave" post you pulled out of your butt?

"The Dolphins, I am told, were quite impressed by Grove's work as they prepared for their 17-15 victory over Oakland last season. [UPDATE: Grove did not play in that game because of a calf injury and, in fact missed four games in 2008. Previously I wrote Grove had played against Miami.]"

Ummm...So, if this never happened (Grove playing against the Fins), who told you the Dolphins were impressed? Or did you just make that up?

Kudos to Nublar for doing some basic fact-checking.

-- Bebo

I was thinking the same thing nj phin fan. I can't imagine they gave him that significant of a contract. Not much more than Berger at least.

Seems to me all they're doing is creating a massive competition at the guards and center positions.

Parcells is supposed to have such a relationship with Al Davis and the signing of two Raiders raises questions for me. Wilson was a no brainer from a skill standpoint. Grove on the other hand hasn't had a decorated career. Maybe his injuries are the kind that Parcells thinks he can manage in his strength and conditioning program.

Either way I doubt it's significant cash.



I wouldn't expect to get linked to PFT anymore. Their short post on the story ends with the Grove quote about playing in the game.

If Florio got pissed about the last story that vanished he's not going to be too happy about this.

Comments are turned off since the site keeps crashing so good luck letting him know. God knows how many emails he's getting right now.


Mando---what a refreshingly positive and atypical conclusion to your post. Bravo.

Geez, can't any of you guys READ? Nowhere does it say Grove played against Miami or that Miami was impressed by his play against Miami.

It says they were impressed by him WHILE PREPARING TO PLAY THE GAME....i.e., on previous GAME TAPE. Get it?


Fair enough, "TH," maybe Mando meant they were impressed by watching film of Grove AS THEY PREPARED TO PLAY THE RAIDERS. But, in that situation, a little clarity is required, no? Any layman reading "The Dolphins were impressed by Grove while preparing to play the Raiders" almost implies some kind of direct interaction, and makes it seem like Grove was going to, or did, play in the game. A simple "While going over previous game film the Dolphins were impressed by Grove, who did not play against them due to X injury."

It's sloppy writing and confusing, that's all I'm saying.

-- Bebo


Its just more competition and depth on the O-line...just what Sparano said they were gonna go get...

googled then websited then read: raider nation no likee Grove too much.

Poorly written enough, I might add, that Florio over at PFT took it to mean that Grove DID play in the game:


"Per the article, the 6-foot-4, 300-pound Grove impressed the Dolphins during a 17-15 victory over the Raiders."

Grove is only 6'4" 300....thought the Trifecta liked bigger players?
Side note...did anyone notice the release of Holliday happened to coincide with the Foreskins release of Jason Taylor????? Interesting
Mike W

well Armando implied that Grove is going to get starter money so don't expect much of a competition at the center position. Grove will be the guy and Berger will likely be his backup.

Tom Hartman , That's because mando just updated the blog . Geez can't you read .

The Dolphins want an upgrade at center so what do they do...they go after Grove who happens to be one inch taller and weighs the same as Satele and happens to be 5 years older than Satele too. WOW!

"Nublar7: I did what you suggested and talked to my source again. The correction is on the update. Thanks for your help."

No problem Armando. :)

Grove is like an Obama comapred to Satele being a Palin! Go Trifecta~

Mike W,

If you are implying Holliday was released so Taylor can take his place in the 3-4, you are wrong. Vonnie is an end where JT would be an OLB pass rusher. JT will not be back.

i hope jt gets picked up by a good team but i doubt it will be miami

NJ- I responded on the page/post you referred to. We're good...

they only found 1 of the 4 people lost at sea and he was a UCF player
i fear there may be 3 dead football players out there


I seriously doubt if we sign Grove it will be to a big contract. "Starter Money" for centers isn't exactly a big money and I don't think Grove (who hasn't started alot due to injuries) would command a high paying contract for his position. If we do sign him he is not automatically the starter, its just like Sparano said, there will be competition at every position in training camp. He with have to compete with Satele and possibly a newly drafted center like Mack or Unger

and peter parker , you need to get a clue.


I'm thinking Taylor will sign with the Bucs...I don't know why its just a hunch...He wants to be in Fl and they have all that cap space...and they just cut half their defense

So what are the odds JT comes back to play OLB for the Phins? 50-50? I have to believe he wants to get back his reputation as being a playmaker and that would be a good thiing, a fired up and motivated JT is a very good thing.

ENOUGH !!!!! , with the jason taylor coming back to miami. It's not happening, that chapter is closed . We just cut a 33 year old dl , why would we bring in a 34 year old defensive player , GEEZ.

Thanks or the update Mando. This should be a solid move.

If he can play, then I'm glad they got him. Again, I trust Tuan Tuna!

I have to agree with nj phin phan, I don't see Tayor playing with the fins next season either. Tampay maybe San Diego...wherever it is I would be surprised if it was Miami.

Jake Grove is a downgrade from Samson Satele. Whereas Grove has already proven after 5 years that he can’t handle big nose tackles we can still hope that Satele has a chance to add strength in this area after only 2 seasons. Add that to the fact that Satele is a superior pass blocker and athlete I don’t see how anyone could think that this is an upgrade. If the current regime covets massive centers then someone please explain this potential signing to me.

Guys, Grove is just set for a visit on tues, he hasn't been signed.
Players visit teams all the time during the free agency period and leave without a contract due to various circumstances. Alot will now depend on the face to face evaluation, physical and medical tests.

Men, women, other species: I will give you an exclusive update on Miami's plans relative to Jason Taylor at around midnight. Let's say 12:01 or so. Check back then if you have nothing else to do.

"I am reporting that barring a last-minute snag..." No KIDDING, Armando! We're reading an article written by YOU. We KNOW that YOU'RE reporting it, unless you state that someone ELSE is reporting it.

Don't you understand how OLD your act is getting? Your posts should focus on the NEWS that you're reporting! The pride should be in doing your job, not in pointing out your ability to do it!

I'll be here, Armando!

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