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Welcome to the 2009 season, Matt Roth

Barring an unexpected, unforeseen, and brand new suprise of some sort, Matt Roth will finally walk onto a Dolphins practice field Wednesday and do something he has not done since the team reported to training camp in August: Practice.

He said last week he feels 100 percent healthy.

He said Monday that Wednesday would be the day to welcome him back.

And so I wait with grand anticipation for this moment, because frankly, I have no clue how this creepy episode is going to reach a normal ending.

Yeah, I said creepy. That's how I describe it when a player tells you to expect a lot of sacks in 2009 in March, but by August is not able to pass the team's conditioning test and is placed on the non-football injury list.

That's what happened to Roth. On the first day of camp, he flunked his conditioning test. This came as a surprise to everyone, including coach Tony Sparano, because Roth had signed a statement that all players sign, basically confirming that he is not injured in any way.

Then Roth failed the test, raising eyebrows and prompting Sparano to have a career chat with the player to find out what was wrong. During that talk Roth basically made up a story of some sort that didn't have anything to do with the real reason he failed the test.

And he did that twice.

These facts are not up for debate. Roth fibbed to his coach. Not once. Not twice. But a total of three times.

"To be honest with you, the way this thing has gone, we have a signed statement from Matt, just like all of our players, on their medical status and his was that he has no illness and no injury," Sparano said in speaking of Roth's first misdirection the day training camp opened.

"We took the conditioning test and Matt did not do as well in the conditioning test. He did not pass the conditioning test so he and I visited. We visited on two occasions, and we talked about what was going on. [Matt indicated] he was sick. He did not feel good, he did not feel right, and so we sent him for blood tests. That work came back negative and that is where we are right now."

The blood work came back negative because Roth wasn't sick. He had a bad groin, which we know because his agent Drew Rosenhaus announced WSVN-Ch. 7 here in Miami. Rosenhaus said this before the Dolphins called him and told him to shut up with the truthful info.

Quick question: Matt Roth has just told his head coach he's sick. He knows he isn't. He knows something's wrong with his groin. So he goes for a battery of blood work anyway without ending the charade first?

Anyway, I asked Sparano about that troublesome fly in this strange soup, the groin injury.

"This groin thing… it is the first time I have heard of it," Sparano said in starting to detail Roth's other fibs. "We are going to investigate it, but I have been told on two different occasions that it is an illness. [The groin injury] is not what I was told was the reason for the performance [in the conditioning test] that I saw yesterday.”

Understand the dynamic here. Sparano usually moves Heaven and Earth so as to not uncover his players.

He tells you Ernest Wilford is improving week after week after week even though Wilford is causing every personnel man in the organization to pull their hairs out from disappointment. He tells you Shawn Murphy is playing pretty good even as Shawn Murphy is getting replaced by Donald Thomas. He tells you he can win titles with his receivers when your eyes tell you that's very unlikely.

Sparano might criticize players to their faces, but never to the media. And yet he basically uncovered Roth's deception because he was royally torqued off at Roth. I do mean he was red-faced mad.

Sparano was mad at Roth's prevarication and others in the organization were angry at Roth because he apparently got hurt while doing something -- no one knows exactly what -- that has nothing to do with playing football. The injury apparently did not occur at the Dolphins facility or as Roth was doing Dolphins work.

How do we know this? Well, I know because I've been told that's the case, but regardless of that can you not see Roth has been on the NON-football injury list? Players don't go on those when they suffer football injuries.

So there's another mystery that remains unsolved.

And now, today, we began to unravel perhaps the most of important wrapping around this mystery: Can Roth contribute to the team in 2009 and to what extent?

Roth will not play against the Saints Sunday. That would be begging to get him hurt. But if he is indeed healthy and is relatively quick in regaining his sharpness, he could begin to carve a niche for himself within the three-week window he has to make it back.

[For the record, Roth does not count against the 53-man roster now as he gets the 21-day roster exemption during which time he can practice. At the end of that time and anytime during that time, the Dolphins must activate, waive or place Roth on a reserve list. If he's activated, he would count on the roster and Miami must make room for him. If he's waived (not likely) or placed on a reserve list he obviously does not count on the roster.]

If Roth shows his 2008 form, he can be a pretty solid edge run-stopper. He has also shown pass-rush skills. So he's valuable and an asset.

The problem is Jason Taylor has taken Roth's strong side linebacker job and isn't likely to offer returning it.

So what do the Dolphins do? Do they keep Taylor as the starter? Do they put Roth in there if he wins the job back and risk alienating Taylor? Or do they platoon the two?

That decision cannot be made until the Dolphins see exactly where Roth is, until they see exactly how far he's come or how much ground he's lost. And once they see that, assuming this saga has no more twists, then the Dolphins can put this mystery to bed.

I think.


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bout effing time


Roth should have some value in the market. Let's trade him along with a high draft pick and bring a #1 wide receiver ASAP!!!


I think he lost his mind.Hope he found it for the sake of the team.Those who strive to be first are the ones that got picked last in anything back at school.lol

I think this will be his last season with us due to the incident. Also now that we have Cameron Wake do we really need Roth? I say trade his for a draft pick or perhaps package him in a deal for a wr (perhaps dwayne bowe?)

We are probably not going to beat the Saints, and will need him to beat the Pats in order to stay in the thick of things. This will probably be Taylors last season. So, I imagine he will stick around.
I hope I'm wrong about the Saints. THAT would make for one sweet Sunday afternoon...

Listen is anyone else pissed that Josh cribbs (or Dwayne bowe, Roscoe Parrish, or Joey Galloway for that matter) aren't in a dolphins uniform. The triads view on receivers is an effin joke!!!' pisses me off. About Roth, I don't like this situation at all, we have too much talent at linebacker, not enough at wide receiver and on our bye week where we wouldve had extra time yo bring someone in and them help us before the trade deadline, we did nothing. NOTHING! Lastly, we have more chance with the saints than everyoe thinks. They have not been on the field as ling or have gotten the pounding that we will make their defense go through. And as things are right now, afc should never lose to NFC!

Roth is a solid player with much potential let's roll with it and see what happens with his play on the field if he shows his 2008 face then let's rotate JT,JP,Wake and Roth keep them fresh and hopefuly this will help with pressure on the QB. And run stop.

We need something creative on defense like the wildcat was on offense!

pretty obious what they will & gotta do

is it just me but i really think Jason Taylor is NOT playing great!!! he lacks the explosivness and there is no doubt he got all the technic skills but he is physically no force. Roth is one bad MoFo, watch the Matt Light - Channing Crowder fight (Miss Light pulling hair Catfight) and enjoy Roth. He is throwing some Lineman around and thats exactly what we lack right now, we are too nice, the playcalling is vanilla and not agressive enough.

Nobody is gonna rush on Roth if he can perform like he did in 2008.

So JT can be used, like planned as he got signed, on 3rd Dwns and obious passing situations, even if I think Roth will provide at least as much pass rush like JT.

To me Key is that Porter gets back healthy again, he shouldnt have played vs the JESTS.

Our defense and specially the pass rush nreaaalllyyy neeeds to step up, we had one good game defensivly (bills) and to me main reason was that Wake set the Bills House on fire.

And please can someone tell Pasqualoni his ZONE COVERAGE is NOT working at all!! if we play that vs the Saints i ll be sitting home in front of the tv and bite in my latin gfs ass

ps: our db's take a lot of heat but as i said that one game we could pressure the QB they had a really good game.

so they proved they can get the job done, im not sold on Wilson too but i think someone needs to tell him, just get the job done Gibril, he seems to me always being around the ball BUT always looking for the big play.

Smith&Davis niiice picks do a good job and will be a good future duo- they already are
Allen ups and downs but gets hurt by the lack of PR a lot.

I dont like the production we get from the nickel spot, use him to blitz like we did last year once what resulted in 3 sacks

i also HATE when we just rush 3 or 4
there is just NO pressure


trade Roth??? have you checked our roster, Jason Taylor is about 50, Porter 31, so there is Wake and Charly who im not gonna buy a Dolphins jersey soon Anderson

Roth is a young OLB still in a DE body with tons of potential + he provides emergency depth at DE. No way we are gonna trade him as his value wont huge and he is valuable to us.

Is there a clause in his contract that affects his pay if he's hurt playing something other than football?? I could see him lying to that extent to protect his money. The Browns tried to collect money from Winslow after his motorcycle accident a few years back. That was a clause in his contract that he wasn't supposed to ride it. I think he has more to prove now than Ricky did when he came back.

Well, Roth would not be the first player who lied to their coach and got busted, he had a nice 6 week timeout period with no pay so now he should be a good boy.

If anything, Roth's return means Wake sees even less playing time, he had 8 plays vs the Jets, those 8 snaps will now be taken up by JT.

I can guarantee this is a holdout with Roth. And I'll tell you why Mando:

Roth enters a contract season... at a position where sacks bring you millions of dollars.

The Fins sign Jason Taylor in order to (at the least) replace Roth on passing downs to rush the passer. Essentially taking away most of Roth's opportunities to get sacks.

A good run stopping OLB is okay on the free agent market. But an OLB that can totally destroy the run AND bring in at least 10 sacks is a rare gem that would bring in HUGE money.

The Fins basically snatched millions from Roth by bringing in Jason Taylor.... Drew is pissed, and rightfully so.... and Roth isn't playing because of it.

And the stupid trade talk continues...if Parcells and Sprano didn't dump Roth after the training camp incident, they certainly are not gonna dump him now...They must really see the potential in this kid to put up with what they did...and Mando, I don't know why you see a problem with Jason Taylor...I believe the Fins will use Roth and Taylor the way that was planned if Roth didn't have this mysterious groin injury...Roth on rushing downs and Taylor as a sack specialist...Jason just doesn't have the gas in his tank to play every down and get to the QB..a less used Taylor would certainly help on passing downs

I bet Matt Roth injured his groin in a martial arts class. I remember reading a story about him being interested in it a year or two ago. He probably didn't stretch properly before doing a kick or something.

It's probably a good thing for a football player to know about martial arts but you gotta be careful not to get injured practicing it. Staying healthy for football is the top priority.

Bill Parcells could care less what Drew Rosenhaus thinks...and if he believed for one NANO SECOND that this was a contract ploy, Matt Roth would be playing for the KC Chiefs...that makes NO sense whatsoever

I pulled my groin getting out if bed this morning

I pulled m

I'm glad Roth is back. I think last year he was a pleasant surprise. I'm only skeptical as to how he'll be accepted back by the brass. He lied to Sparano three times, and that's 3 times too many for Parcells. He definitely won't be one of Parcells "guys" (a la Ferguson and Akin Ayodele). Not sure as well how the rotation will go with him and JT, but I agree with the other guys that he's our long term player for OLB, not JT (who will be gone within 2 years). Hopefully it all ends good. Lastly, I'm THRILLED we didn't just trade Ginn, like I heard rumors of, because then our receiver core would be even more miserable than it is now (as far as having a true #1, because I'm happy with Bess and Camarillo and Hartline).

Is anyone else glad Inimounts does'nt work in the player personnel dept.

Hey geniouses. The trade deadline was yesterday at 4 pm. So for the sake of every reader on this blog from now until after the season - skip the "trade Roth, trade Ginn trade Ronnie, etc" spiel. Got that? You cannot trade them.

Roth is the future for Miami, either in the team or traded for a pick or player. I think he stays, but he did let the team down and could have been the difference in our losses, especially against the Colts and Bolts with the huge lack of a pass rush.

Yeah you probably pull your groin every morning before you get out of bed. TMI

we should have traded Roth n a 4 round pick for WR dyawne bowe. we dont need a player that hurt the team by lying saying he's not hurt when he no for a fact he is. Not lie one time or two but three times n u out. Hello (wr) bowe n a Ring...yay

There both probably gone after this year. Taylor has a one year low ball contract and Roth is a free agent.

Meat1345...1000 percent agreed...I will trust Parcells instead of some guy on a blog who's never won a football game...

Roth was and still is a big asset to the team. He changes everything that we can do on defense and will for years to come. Management and coaching may be upset with how things shook out, but they know we need to keep him.

For whatever reason, Roth lied. Won't happen this season but I can't see Parcells keeping Roth once they find a replacement.

Football For Dummies....Chapter One. No GM is going to trade draft picks for an player on INJURED RESERVE...Stop with the " should have traded Roth for..."no one was interested!!! And the receivers we have, are OUR receivers the rest of the year...stop crying about Wide Receivers, and unless Parcells picks another receiver in the 5th or later round in 2010 draft, this is the receiver corp for this team...GET OVER IT

Keep Roth on the field for obvious running situations and rotate Taylor and Porter to keep them both fresher.

He lied, and the coaches found out. Instead of suspending him the brass messed with his money and put his job possibly his career on the line to see how this guy will respond going forward. Instead of airing it out to the media. Who knows, maybe there was no other way to get through Roth.

RosenSleaze strikes again...like I said from day one---a holdout disguised as an injury----pay me big, or I'll chill until next year.

Mando---did not a groin specialist tell the Fins he could find nothing wrong with the groin? Or is it early & it was in your post?

and count me as slightly pissed that Josh Cribbs isn't a Fin today-- I feel we could have gotten him cheaper than Bowe, etc.

Where's Barry Jackson? I miss his columns.

The Roth stuff is almost as creepy as the unsubstantiated Ted Ginn trade rumors.

If the Dolphins feel good about the OLB slot - they should get creative and put Roth on the field at ILB. Their DC needs to be as open minded as the OC.

The Dolphins need a controlled chaos with LB's flying all around before the snap and then filling their responsibilities.

time for my meat ball sub.

My prediction:

Dolphins exhault Roth's condition and skills after a week or so of practice. A week later they trade him for whatever they can get.

I'll bet anyone a beverage of their choice that this will happen for two reasons:

1. Parcells does not put up with the crap Roth has pulled.

2. We don't need him, but we do need draft picks.

@George: T-R-A-D-E-D-E-A-L-I-N-E is O-V-E-R no more trades possible

maybe we can trade Roth to Goodell for more time to make trades, because thats the only way anyone is getting traded until next year

The dude shot himself in the leg
, ala Plaxico, and didn't wanna do time!! I once covered a hicky with concealer so that how he did it..

This is some of the weakest blog dialogue I've ever seen. Some of you guys are ultra dumb. I guess this is what happens when NJ Phin Fan, Fake GM, and Nathaniel Dodsworth aren't around.

You guys just stole time from my life.

CarltheChamp says,

one thing to bear in mind is our chemistry, our all important, better than any other teams chemistry.......if we got a guy like Roth lying about stuff because he is unhappy about the Taylor aquisition, we need to make him happy, and fast, because alot of our guys respect him and he can put a divide in our locker room, which would ruin everything. Right now it seems like these guys love each other and want the best for each other, throw some money at Roth and keep him happpy....PLEASE!!!

JT leads all linebackers in sacks and TFL's, and is 3rd in tackles. How is that playing poorly? He has set the edge very well and would be a huge improvement on the weak-side over Porter on running downs. That gets Roth back on the strong-side and lets Porter and Wake come in on passing downs.

all linebackers? i thoughed Dumerville is leading all LBs :P

if you ment Dolphin LBs well lets compare
Jason Taylor, One Leg Joey and Cameron "i beat the Bills bymyself but the coached dong give me any playing time as i only had 3 sacks sorry 2.5 now, 4 tackle for lost and a forced fumble" Wake

Porter was hurt all season so far
Wake didnt get another shot

when exactly did he sack Edwards? right as the Bills were shiffting the coveratge to Wake lol
c'mon men

TAYLOR IS TOOOOOO SLOW, i like to see him on 3rd downs and passing situations but get him off the field for 1st and 2nd.

to Roth... last year Omar asked a bunch of Fins Defenders, if you are in a bar fight involved which teammate would you want being with you. EVERYBODY said MATT ROTH. he is one bad MoFo.

check the Crowder vs Ms Light fight and see what Roth does to the Guard

he throws him around, have you ever seen Taylor doing that? JT is a dancer and is gonna outdance you with his fine technique, Roth is going trough you and thats what we need.

if the opponent cant run on one side, the run game becomes easy to stop cause nobody is going trough the middle so far.

Let's not take this too personally dolfans.. Roth is a solid player who showed a lot of skill, guts, and potenial last year. Whatever the truth of the matter is, let's learn and move on from it and get this guy healthy and back on the field.

put taylor in porters position and play roth in taylors position and release porter. He's useless

Agree 100% w/Mark in Toronto

It is about time for the Saints to come back down to earth! Go Phins!

Why don't they try Roth out at ILB?

Gotta say, Mando when you get to investigating stuff you really dig.

Good work.

How does it makes sense to put a pass-rusher who is "too slow" out on 3rd down? Fact remains JT has been most effective this year setting the edge and channelling runs back to the inside. Hence the logic of moving him to the weak-side and putting Roth back to the strong-side on running downs. Get them off the field on passing downs and let the Wake and Joey go after the QB. Joey is a liability against the run injured or not.

Hey folks, come to our blog. We ask you questions like "What do you think about Wildcat?" Or "Give the offensive line a nickname!"

We's really good like that.

I recall that "Fight" from then onwards ive lost a lot of the respect I had for Crowder.

Stand and fight like a man not run away like a little girl. That continues to really tick me off about him.

I hate to say it but Ray Lewis probably would have stood his ground. Sends a message to the opposition but also his team mates..

ok.. vent over.

Roth will work himself back into shape. He'll start relieving Taylor. Who ever plays better will take over most of the snaps. That is providing he doesn't "hurt his groin" again. I wish he could play safety.

Wow...I can't believe the crap in here! Wake and Roth are two completely opposite types of players. Wake is a pass rusher who is VERY weak against the rush. Roth, on the other hand, is a run stuffing beast. JT and Porter are both Old pass rushers and suspect run stoppers (especially Porter). Roth is, by far, the best run stopping OLB under contract to the Phins. He'll be back against the Jests and I can't wait.

As far as the "lies" to Sparano...maybe just maybe the secretive Parcells organization has been doing their best to hide Roth's condition and Rosenhaus slipped the truth on Ch 7. I'm not saying that Roth is completely innocent in this whole mess but I can't help but think that all of the facts are being kept in-house.

AndrewCT: It would have taken way more than we would have given to get DB from the Chiefs. He is the only reciever they have and the Chief's think-tank wouldn't have given him up.

dolpfin: Roth and a 4th wouldn't have gotten it done either.

Marco: Concur, JT is not the force he once was and I too am afraid he will never return to anything close to that status. I feel confident, this year is it for him. We need Roth to make a full recovery (mentally and physically).

Tommya, interesting take! But I think "perspective" has it right. They will work him back in and split their time to rest Taylor and hopefully get more punch out of him when it matters most.

Roth improves our defense. He provides great run stuffing ability with a pretty good pass rush. This allows the safeties to play the pass a bit more which could make a significant difference to our secondary.

Roth needs to be moved to the inside!

All this yak is not gonna mean anything this week,If our defence does not put Brees on his ass we will be done by halftime.I don't care who gets there first,just hit him hard.

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