« Back to the Senior Bowl scouting report: OG | Main | Connecting dots on Parcells, Payton, Brees ... »

Ten issues facing the Miami Dolphins

The last month or so has been interesting because tons of stuff has happened with the Dolphins that have led to many notions of what is about to happen. Some of those notions are probably well-founded (such as Joey Porter is going to get cut) while others aren't.

I figured today would be a good day to address some of these flights of fancy based on what I know, what experience tells me and, in some cases, what is only an educated guess.

1. Joey Porter. He will get cut. The Dolphins need to get Cameron Wake into games and they can't have Porter being a "progress stopper." Porter cannot stay around as a backup because he'd be a locker room cancer in that role. So Porter has played his final game for the Dolphins. This I know.

2. Gibril Wilson. I was talking to a Dolphins source about Wilson and without prodding, he told me, "All I know is we can get rid of anyone we don't think can do the job without it hurting our ability to get other players." So that tells me the Dolphins are strongly leaning toward getting rid of Wilson if they haven't decided to do so already. A free safety is supposed to be the final line of defense and it seemed like Wilson was instead an open invitation to score touchdowns. Add to that the fact he didn't bring any game-changing plays to the table, and I think you get the idea.

3. Elvis Dumervil. ESPN's Adam Schefter, perhaps the best information man in the business, said during the playoffs that Dumervil would be on "Miami's radar" based on the fact former Denver defensive coordinator Mike Nolan is now Miami's defensive coordinator. Well, Salguero, a relative peon by comparison, is telling you this will not happen. Dumervil will not be a Dolphin in 2010. First, the Broncos aren't going to let him go. Secondly, Dumervil isn't an unrestricted free agent, but rather will be a restricted free agent. Third, the Dolphins will not pay multiple draft picks plus a huge contract for Dumervil when their list of needs is immense and the draft is the most viable way for filling those needs. So we'll see who is right on this one.

4. Brandon Marshall. The Denver wide receiver will be traded. And it will not be to the Dolphins. I'm thinking more likely it will be to a team like Chicago. That part is a guess. The trade of Marshall part of the equation? Book it.

5. Anquan Boldin. This is a totally different situation than Marshall. The price tag has dropped on Boldin and the Cardinals will be looking to get something for him this offseason because he's a free agent after 2010 and they've already identified a replacement for him in Early Doucet. The Dolphins like Boldin. He's tough. He's big. He is not a diva. Did he complain about his contract? Yes. He had a legitimate complaint. Does that make him a bad dude? Absolutely not. The Cards will probably ask a second-round pick for him. Somebody will offer a fourth. Depending on how high the selection, I'd say he could be had for a third rounder. Doesn't mean the Dolphins will do it. But they will absolutely discuss it.

6. Channing Crowder. Many of you on my twitter, which you should be following are asking if Crowder will be cut based on his agreement with Porter on several issues during their radio appearance this week. That is not Crowder's biggest concern. His concern should be having a great offseason so that next year he can start 16 games, which he has not done since arriving in 2005. Crowder finished fifth on the team in tackles last season. Fifth. He had fewer than half the tackles he had in 2008. It was a bad year for him. That's the type of stuff that gets you replaced, not a couple of sentences on one radio show. Bottom line: I think Crowder stays.

7. Ted Ginn Jr. Dan Marino, one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time, recently said Ginn has the makings of a No. 1 receiver, that all he needs is time to develop. Salguero the peon disagrees. Oh, Ginn has the speed. But he doesn't seem to have the temperment or quickness or hands to be a No. 1 receiver. Now, I would never question what's in a man's heart. But I've seen this guy run out of bounds too many times when he could have gained an extra couple of yards. I've seen him drop too many passes in pressure situations. And last year he he regressed rather than progressed. I'm not drinking the Kool-Aid any more. I leave that to Marino.

8. Ronnie Brown. Many of you have asked if the Dolphins are going to re-sign him to a new contract. He is under contract for 2010 if there is no salary cap. And it is a virtual certainty there will be no salary cap. So I ask you, what is Miami's motivation for giving him a new long-term contract now? It seems wiser to let him come to training camp and prove himself (yes, again). It also seems wiser to get a better grasp on what the labor agreement is going to look like. Signing him to a long-term deal now is simply not wise. I assume the Dolphins recognize this.

9. Chad Pennington. He only works for the Dolphins under a strict set of circumstances: That he is healthy, first and foremost. And that he accepts that he is the backup to Chad Henne. Pennington is one of those guys that gets it. He won't be trouble as a backup. He won't step on Henne's toes. And he would bring value as an insurance policy against a Henne injury that neither Pat White nor Tyler Thigpen can offer. He is experienced. He is a great leader. But his return is absolutely, positively not done. I would say his return right now is 50-50 at best.

10. Jason Taylor. He is the antithesis to Joey Porter in that he doesn't go off like a cocked pistol ready to shoot everything in order to hit a small target. Taylor is more calculating. He was every bit as angry in 2010 as Porter because he was, in fact, platooned more than Porter. Taylor lost more snaps than Porter did as the Dolphins used third-down to get Cameron Wake and even Charlie Anderson more snaps. That made Taylor so unhappy he cooled on returning for 2010. Now, he obviously understands that if Porter isn't coming back, his chances of returning on a one-year contract improve. But the Dolphins are making no commitment to Taylor. And he, frankly, is making none to them. He'd like to be back in Miami if he's going to get an opportunity to rush the passer and play significant downs. If that's not the case, life will not end for Taylor. He will play somewhere. But to pretend to know where is crazy at this early stage in the process. 

TrackBack

TrackBack URL for this entry:
http://www.typepad.com/services/trackback/6a00d83451b26169e2012877660092970c

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Ten issues facing the Miami Dolphins:

Comments