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Contradictory stories surrounding Clark's visit

Over the weekend the Dolphins suffered a free agency setback when Pittsburgh free safety Ryan Clark was invited to town for a visit. Clark was offered a contract by the Dolphins and a chance to start in 2010 but he decided not to take the offer and headed back to Pittsburgh where he signed a four-year contract Tuesday with the Steelers.

Immediately, Dolphins fans cried foul, saying Clark had used their team to get a better offer from the Steelers.

Immediately, Clark's agent Joel Turner came to his client's defense claiming nothing of the sort had happened and telling The Miami Herald that, "honest to God, it wasn't about money."

Well, stuff happens, right?

Easy come, easy go, right? 

Case closed, right?

Wrong.

Seems Clark is talking about his visit to South Flordooda and his version of events throws his agent under the bus, because it apparently was about money. And his version of events also throws the Dolphins under the bus because it depicts them as team that didn't make him feel wanted.

In an interview with Denver TV station Fox 31, Clark said he came on the trip "with an open mind," but his mind closed somewhat when the Dolphins started talking numbers.

"What it came down to was the inability for us to agree on a deal. [The Dolphins] offered what they thought was fair, but in the end I didn’t agree," Clark said.

"They were definitely straight forward with me. I wouldn’t expect anything less from a Bill Parcells team. I thought that I was going to be paid like a starter, but unfortunately for me, the negotiations didn’t reflect that."

So it was about money. The Dolphins' offer was not starter money in Clark's mind.

"There just comes a time in negotiations where you have to give a player reasons as to why you won’t stretch yourself financially," Clark said. "In the way that they responded to me, I could tell that they were being honest so that’s why I can’t be insulted, but I just didn’t agree."

And now the part where Clark throws the Dolphins beneath the Greyhound. He says that in his talks with the team that was supposedly recruiting him, he got the distinct feeling the Dolphins didn't really love him all that much.

"They certainly showed [Karlos] Dansby how they felt about him with what they offered him," Clark said, "but I just felt like I would have to prove myself to [Dolphins head coach] Tony Sparano all over again; and in Pittsburgh I wouldn’t have to do that.

"They told my agent, 'Look, we just don’t know this guy. After we evaluate him more out there with us, maybe we’ll feel different about it.' But I just figured, if this is how they  feel, these things aren’t going to change about me overnight."

One question: If the Dolphins were willing to tell Clark's agent that they didn't really know Clark that well, why were they willing to bring him to town and offer him a deal to begin with?

Obviously the team found itself in a situation that it had a player it liked ... but didn't love. And they actually told him as much which I supposed is honest but also kind of tactless.

Ultimately, Clark signed a four-year deal worth $14 million with the Steelers. That is a bargain rate for a good free safety.

Consider Clark will make an average of $3.5 million a year. Consider that Miami paid free agent bust Gibril Wilson more than half of what Clark will make in four years -- $8 million -- for one year's poor service.

Obviously, having heard the contradictory versions from the agent and player, I'd love to know the Dolphins' version of the story. I will call the team in the morning and request an interview with Jeff Ireland or Bill Parcells on the topic.

And then I'll sit by the phone today and wait for it to ring.

[Update 11 a.m.: The Dolphins say they saw today's blog and are passing on the opportunity to set the record straight. "There will be an opportunity to ask those questions, and others, at Coach Sparano's appearance at the AFC Coaches breakfast at the NFL annual meetings in Orlando later this month and at Jeff Ireland's pre-draft press availability which will be scheduled shortly after that," the team said.]

 

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Just a thought but isn't moving Sean Smith to Free Safety an option since he did play safety in college. I believe Joe Haden will be a steal if he slips to the 12th pick.

He is faster then his 40 time at the combine and deion sanders was quoted as say his form was awful which may have led to the slow 40 time. I say drafting Haden to start opposite Vontae Davis and moving Sean Smith to free safety would not be a bad plan. Haden is a terrific tackler and Vontae impressed me last year in that regard as well. Two corners who will stick their nose in the running game is a plus. You can never have enough talent in the secondary in this pass happy age of football.

Any thoughts?

I wouldn't cry if we tade the 12th pick for Marshall. You Dez Bryant fans can pack it in. It aint happening. Think about it like this: Your Bill Parcells, you have the 12th pick. You want a WR. You can choose between Marshall or Bryant.
It's a no brainer.

If you were to build a roster from scratch, the 2 positions I would start with on offense, it would be QB and LT. And if you disagree, you must not have been watching the disaster we had since Marino/Webb retired. Well thank god someone who knows what they are doing. We have Chad Henne and Jake Long. And if I started on defense, my number 1 position I'd start with would be CB, especially in today's game. Having a shutdown CB opens up many things on defense. Well now we have Vontae Davis, and Sean Smith. You fill out te rest of the roster from there. So IMO I think they have done everything the right way so far.

I think it is smart. They were conservative and assertive and voiced legitimate concerns of health. they couldn't have known he would sign right back w Steelers w/o hearing a counter offer. I think he is just sour grapes bcuz Karlos gots paid. His loss...

Cheers guys. Just trying to add a little levity to what seems to be an increasingly morose fan base on the blog.

A guy who starts sentences with the word "And", should not be writing for a newspaper. He should be in remedial courses at Miami Dade Community College. Armando you're a poor excuse.

CavKong,

Way to uncork one bro! The amount of restlessness in some of the natives is rather striking.

When people clamor for this guy and that guy in FA so loudly it's like they had never seen a bust. Look no further than Gibril Wilson that dispite be a very top tackler in the league prior to the Fins snagging him. Then he takes free piggy back rides in many games and seems to forget the proper angle to take to get a proper tackle.

It's pretty crazy and the Trifecta is probably wondering why as well.

The NFL is rife with busts each and every year in FA and the draft.

I wished the crazed fans would please stop making things so cut and dry, there are no exact formulas. There are only your perceptions of the team and it's needs and the what the Trifecta actually does to take care of them. There is grey area in a teams "Needs" "Wants" and "Wish Lists".

If we get WR Marshall for all his worldly talents and he slaps the crap out of his fiancee for any reason then who is gonna take the fall on that suspension??? BP&Co or you? Do you honestly think the Trifecta has no pride? You are not sure they understand the the NFL stands for "Not For Long" when you continually under perform? I am betting they know.

They took the Fins from 1-15 to 11-5 which ties and NFL record for best turnarounds game wise. They team had a ton more season ending injuries, a 1st place schedule, some crazy bounces which lead to less turnovers and I still think V. Davis got jobbed on many of his "barely put his hand out" P.I. calls against him. That's essentially free real estate the refs are giving the opposing team. He was a rookie so maybe he gets a few more calls next year but, I digress.

Being from the SoCal area the San Diego Chargers still carry around scars from the nightmare that was Cryin Ryan Leaf. Problem players can hurt a franchise a bunch.

We all want winners and so do BP& Co. It's fine to say you rather have this or that guy I am not speaking of that. I just believe that if Marshall does not come to Miami it's because the countless hours of research and debate by them lead to a "Let's not" vote.

If he ends up in Miami by some lotto ticket chance then I will cheer him on with crossed fingers hoping he has matured in his personal life.

Cheers,

New blog up

Odinseye, If Dez Bryant becomes a superstar like fitzgerald then that 12th pick is more worth it than a person who is a problem proven the last few years He maybe good but Marshall is like T.O. in my opinion. We can only wait to find out about Dez Bryant all this talk about off field issues and personality are bs and based off his high school and college years I would not hold it against him once he is a professional. I say give him a clean slate and draft based on talent

I love how Deon Sanders is now a mentor. He's such a good mentor that he got Dez Bryant suspended from college football. Way to go Deion! I wouldn't let Dion mentor my dog!

Tiger Woods does steroids.Fact.

Dude is going explode before the Jets do anything.

With the money wasted on Gibril Wilson, I am sure the Dolphins were wary of offering the type of money Ryan Clark wanted, especially considering his age. This is what happens when you make a drastic mistake the year before at the same position.

They should get rid of The F@&?ing Big Tuna and use
those millions to pay good players!!!!! Damn!!!

Clark sucks big ones.

who really cares if we dont sign anybody if we do good in the draft it will be better ok look with 1 taylor mays we need a guy with ball skills 2 mount cody and then build depth

Clark probably just wanted to be the highest paid safety, and then realized that the dolphins didn't think that highly of him. That's the only reason why he would bring up the Carlos( with a K ) contract.

No room for over paid cry babies on this team.

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