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41 posts from April 2009

April 01, 2009

Reasons Dolphins not in Cutler sweepstakes

[Before starting this post I need to thank you. The Herald has released its blog numbers for the month of March and you guys did a fantastic job. Dolphins In Depth continues to be the No. 1 sports blog at The Herald without compare, not even close. But what is amazing is that some days this is the No. 1 blog at the paper overall. That is humbling because Pulitzer Prize winner Dave Barry's blog also calls the site home and Dave has always been the biggest dog on the Herald porch. This blog is now a Great Dane regularly running with Dave. Last month this blog had 174,543 visitors generating 568,686 page views. That's a nearly 30 percent jump in both categories month to month. So again, many thanks. I encourage you to keep coming back as the draft looms this month. And tell your fellow Dolphins fans to do the same.]

I have been impressed that only about 100 e-mails have come into my outlook box demanding the Dolphins trade for Denver quarterback Jay Cutler.

I expected more, frankly, considering the love-hate relationship Dolphins fans seem to have with quarterback Chad Pennington. Yes, they love his production and leadership and gamesmanship. But yes, they hate his questionable arm strength.

Cutler obviously would be an upgrade (physically) and that's the reason fans wanting him cite for wanting him. He is younger, has a stronger arm and is proven.

But the Dolphins are not in the Cutler derby that includes, at least initially, about half a dozen teams because there are other plans already afoot for the Miami quarterback position. Have you heard? The Dolphins are quite pleased with Chad Henne. He is their quarterback of the not-too-distant future.

As the linked story states: "Because of the confidence Miami has in Henne, the team is not interested in making a trade for a young but proven starting quarterback, such as Denver's Jay Cutler. The plan is to go with Pennington early this season and Henne by 2010."

Henne is so entrenched in Miami's plans, that Herald collegue Jeff Darlington reported last weekend he accompanied Bill Parcells, Tony Sparano and Jeff Ireland as they worked out a handful of top-tier college wide receivers, including Hakeem Nicks, Percy Harvin and others.

Henne was brought along to throw to the receivers in the workouts because, well, he's going to be the guy throwing to them in the future if the receivers are drafted by Miami.

You might argue the Dolphins could improve dramatically by adding Cutler. The Dolphins would argue giving up the draft picks or players or both necessary to make the trade possible would weaken the team more than strengthen it. The Dolphins, you should remember, are in the business of collecting draft picks now, not trading them away.

You might argue Henne is unproven and Cutler is already a Pro Bowl player. The Dolphins might argue Henne has the makeup they like and Cutler's handling of his relationship with Denver coach Josh McDaniels raises questions about his makeup.

So the only part of the Jay Cutler saga you need worry about as a Dolphins fan is watching where he winds up. If it's Detroit or some other distant NFL outpost, the issue is moot to you. If he ends up with the division-rival Jets, which are apparently interested in the player, then it becomes a concern.

But only then.