The Dolphins today have to be considered the early favorite to sign linebacker Karlos Dansby.
Dansby, 28, confirmed on ESPN after midnight Friday morning that he will visit with the Dolphins Friday. "I just got off the phone with my agent," Dansby said, "and he told me our first visit right now is Miami. We have other things lined up."
And away we go!
Obviously, Dansby will be in South Florida sometime in the afternoon. He was not, contrary to various reports, aboard a plane to Miami at midnight. (Oh and reports that claim they were slightly "off" on their claims were wrong, too. This isn't horseshoes or hand grenades.)
The Dolphins will do everything they can to keep Dansby from leaving town without a contract. They have a relationship with Dansby's agent Todd France, who also represents running back Ronnie Brown.
But Dansby will cost. As I reported earlier, he's looking for $30 million guaranteed.
The Dolphins were not messing around Thursday even before the new league year began at midnight. They were among the first teams to speak with local agent Drew Rosenhaus about safety Antrel Rolle, according to a source close to Rolle.
I have not confirmed that Miami has offered Rolle a contract as has been written elsewhere. Going to be cautious here.
On another front, a source close to Chad Pennington is saying the quarterback wants to play for the Dolphins. Nothing new thee. There is no contract agreement, but it seems the veteran will do whatever he can to be with the Dolphins as a backup.
If there is a follow through on this -- and remember it's not done until and unless there is a contract -- the Dolphins may find themselves with four quarterbacks at the end of training camp. And that could be one quarterback too many.
I do know the Buffalo Bills have sniffed around about Tyler Thigpen so that might be an option for alleviating the crowded quarterback room.
One small caveat to all this: The Carolina Panthers released starting QB Jake Delhomme on Thursday. Dolphins offensive coordinator Dan Henning coached Delhomme the year the Panthers went to the Super Bowl. Not saying it's going to happen, but again, until Pennington has a signed contract with the Dolphins, he hasn't.
[Update: Chris Mortenson of ESPN is reporting Pennington wants a no-trade clause to sign with the Dolphins. Dolphins have resisted. Like I said, it's not done until it's done.]
The New York Jets, perhaps Miami's biggest rival, have already made a significant move Thursday evening. They acquired cornerback Antonio Cromartie from the San Diego Chargers for a 2011 third-round pick that could be a second-rounder depending on Cromartie's play and how far the Jets advance.
Cromartie led the NFL with seven interceptions in 2007 but has only five picks in the two years since. The Chargers had grown weary of his unmet potential. Rex Ryan, who loved Cromartie coming out of FSU years ago, believes he can play man-coverage on either side now and bring even more pressure than he did last year.
The Jets had the No. 1 defense in the NFL last season.