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On Chad's bad shoulder, Dolphins bad record

Chad Pennington said it best late Sunday when in talking about his personal adversity with a serious shoulder injury he might also have been talking for his team: "I'm going to hope for the best and expect the worst," Pennington said.

Although Pennington declined to be specific about his right shoulder's status, the team is fearing the injury is a dislocation of his throwing shoulder. Team doctors popped the shoulder back into place on the sideline but the damage was done, according to a source.

A dislocated shoulder is different than a separated shoulder in that a dislocation means the top of the arm pops out of the socket. In a separation, there could be damage to the ligament that connects the collarbone to the shoulder blade.

Both are serious, particularly for a quarterback.

Pennington will miss an unspecified amount of time. Depending on what the MRI this morning reveals, Pennington could be out as little as three weeks or up to 12 weeks, which would effectively end his season. If the injury -- regardless of whether it's a separation or dislocation -- is acute, it might require surgery.

And that also would be a season-ending situation.

Pennington has already undergone two right shoulder surgeries in the past. Pennington was talking like someone who expects bad news following today's MRI.

"I've worked extremely hard and have overcome a lot of adversity and been able to play when people said I couldn't play anymore," Pennington said. "I've been through two surgeries and I've been able to play and play at a high level. That's quite an accomplishment.

"Right now, I'm in a state of shock, truly disappointed because I know what type of work I've put in and what type of work that our team has put in. For me not to be able to be out there and help us fight through this adversity is tough to swallow."

The Pennington injury makes Chad Henne Miami's new starting quarterback. The Dolphins might also be in the market for a backup because Pat White simply is not ready to be the backup now.

Henne struggled against the Chargers, who riddled him with new coverages as soon as he entered the game.

"I think we gave him a few different looks that he probably hasn't seen yet," cornerback Antonio Cromartie said.

When he came in the game, Henne was confident he was ready to succeed. But he missed some open receivers either by not getting the ball to them or throwing elsewhere.

"I was prepared for this moment," he said of the time he was told to come in the game. "It's only a 7-point game and that's the moment you have to shine and come up and become a player ... Obviously tonight it didn't really show. I made some mistakes, but I'll be in that film room day and night busting my butt and getting better and lead this team."

The Dolphins need the leadership because right now they are winless and with few viable options for getting better.

Do you know any good playmakers for the offense? Do you know any available secondary players that can help stop the bleeding?

The Dolphins need both. Henne got no help, least of all from Ted Ginn Jr., who had six passes thrown his way, resulting in zero receptions.

The team gained 94 yards on its 17-play first quarter opening drive. And then gained only 195 total yards the rest of the game.

The secondary, meanwhile, continued to give up big plays. (This while Renaldo Hill notched an interception Sunday.)

"We can't be giving up explosive plays down the field like that," nose tackle Jason Ferguson said.

This game was depressing on par with last year's loss to Arizona for different reasons. That game was a blowout in which the Dolphins didn't compete.

This game was closer but it was depressing in that the Chargers were clearly the much better team despite missing several key players.Starting running back LaDainian Tomlinson didn't play. Starting center Nick Hardwick didn't play. Starting guard Louis Vasquez didn't play. Linebacker Shawne Merriman left the game after the first half.

And still the Chargers had more talent on the field.

Finally, this column I wrote for Monday's Miami Herald outlines how the things the Dolphins did so well in winning the AFC East a year ago are exactly the kind of things they stink at doing so far this season.



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Feel awful for Pennington, no one seems to be wondering how the defense got a wide open shot at Chad, nice blocking guys - Henne will accomplish nothing if the O-line fails to give him protection, not to mention the terrible performance by the recievers lately, Ginn has proven beyond a doubt he's a CFL caliber player, nothing more - the only redemption is the running game, however one has to wonder without a vet to lead the offense how they'll perform with Henne, who despite the "BIG ARM" that CP lacks, has still not figured out how to actually put the ball where he aims it - be grateful for an 8-8 season at this point.

Too bad for Chad Pennington. This guy is a class act. Now though it's time for Henne to step up and become the face and future of the Dolphins.

As for Ginn (whom I happen to like) he should go work with his buddy Santonio Holmes in the offseason. At Ohio St, it was always about Ted Ginn and his speed. Well, SH has turned out to be a far superior receiver than Ginn. Ginn: get your self right or you'll continue to be part of the 1st round bust brigade.

Dolphins will be ok. They need to get their heads right.

I feel sorry for Pennington too but the simple fact remains that Henne should have started the season and took all the snaps in Training Camp and have Pennington back him up.

If Henne is supposed to be the long term answer and Pennington is only signed through this year why not start Henne to begin with!!!!

Henne's time is now!!!!! Let's hope the Trifecta didn't miss on Henne as well!!!!

A lot of flaws were covered up last year because we played mostly mediocre teams and the players were more focused. Last year the theme was "Respect the code." This year the focus was on "celebrity ownership." It made the team sure look pretty, but can they fight? These first three games were a test. They were good teams, but we had too many instances where we shot ourselves in the foot. We gave up the football 13 times in a regular season. We've already turned it over 7 times in 3 games. The team made the decision to go with a younger secondary. For the long run, it's good. Right now there's going to be rookie mistakes and the veteran maturity that is missing like communicating with each other. (When Renaldo Hill started last year, things in the secondary straightened out.) I'm not impressed with either one of our inside LB's. They have very few tackeles, mediocre coverage skills, and miss the "blow up" plays that made Zack Thomas made a lot in his heyday. Ted Ginn shows me that he's soft in so many ways. We need WR's that are aggressive along with the ability to stretch the field and break the game open. The team is playing like they got hit with a plague epidemic. I thought the game turned after the goal line fumble that turned into a touchback. This is Chad Henne's team now. That's what he was drafted for whether he sits and learns like Philip Rivers did or now has the opportunity to take over like Tom Brady did in his second year out of nowhere. This team can either melt down like they did in 2006 and 2007 or make the most of it under this difficult situation like they did in 2005 and 2008. Time will tell.

Would Miami trade to get Mike Vick??

Hopefully with a week to prepare Henne will look better. I haven't given up on the season but it looks shaky to say the least. I too have my list of guys on this team that make me nuts like most posting here. I think the one that drives me the crazy most is Crowder. He's made for better sound bites than play and looks absolutely outmatched in coverage and tackling. Ginn and Wilson round out my top 3 list of stiffs on this team.

The award to the best post of the Day goes too:

Otter!! stand up otter

"Henne has played in 8 preseason games, and has done nothing noteworthy in any of them. He is stiff. When he speaks, he is sullen, morose and obviously scared. He does not have "it."

Thnx Chad P----you gave us a great season last year, and were let down by Fasano & Ginn this year, as were the rest of us.:

Posted by: Otter | September 28, 2009 at 10:39 PM

Just want to say Cheers...Us Fin fans need a drink!

We just lost the heart and soul of the Miami Dolphins...Chad P will be missed not only as our QB, but as our leader. Chad P always played with heart and effort.It didn't matter to him if he busted his nose or arm...the guy put it all out on the field every game.As a Miami Fan that's all I could ask for.Thanks for the great season last year Chad P...we couldn't of done it without you.You will always be a Miami Dolphin.I will hang the number 10 Chad P. jersey up with some of the other real Miami greats.I wish nothing but the best to Chad P.

I don't know how Henne is going to do...I really have my doubts.The kid has never done anyhthing to show us he's ready to be a great QB...look at his INT for a TD!!!However, I still want to give him a chance to show us that he deserves to wear that Miami Jersey.

Man what a sad week...much love to all my fellow fin fans.

So sad...35 year fan here, and I thought we FINALLY had a true QB, a leader as we did with Dan the Man. When CP got traded from the Jets I thought the Jets really screwed up and for what (or whom)? (I think that guy is wearing purple now. Good riddance.) CP turned us around, got us back on track, took us out of the darkness of some horrible years. I wasn't even concerned with our start to the season, I knew CP could turn it around. Well, I've been a Fin Fan for some lean years, and I'm still here, and I'll still cheer for us no matter what happens. Buck up Chad! To me you're still our leader and I'm sure I speak for all of us Fin Fans when I wish you a speedy recovery! I'll be sitting in front of the screen, in my jersey and cap, singing the Dolphins song!

if you look at it, all the dolphins coaches for the last years all have been conservative then they go an get a conservative staff and conservative players that are really scarey like 4 instance ted ginn jr evertime he gets a catch he runs out of bounds unlike ATL roddy white who fights 2 get extra yards, we need players that really knows how 2 play the game an not the ones that lack the skills 2 not make there team better please tuna don t mess up your resume with this dolphin 09 team...WOW

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