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Another PR black eye on the horizon? Maybe

It's been a long offseason for the Dolphins, one filled with more perceived flubs and miscues than last year's four-turnover afternoon at Buffalo.

Trying to be a postive, glass-half-full person, I guess I can look past the fumbled termination of Joey Porter's contract, which had other teams and agents snickering because it was proof someone on the Dolphins simply cannot do math.

Then there was the poorly strategized manner in which the Jason Taylor situation was handled and the failure to celebrate a free agency victory by holding a press conference when a player of Karlos Dansby's stature was signed.

I can even -- eventually -- move past the Dez Bryant "is your mother a prostitute" fiasco because folks have apologized, other folks have accepted the apology, and an internal investigation into the matter is underway.

We can get past all those errors -- assuming more errors aren't on the horizon.

But at least one more possible error in judgment will be unveiled as early as Friday.

On Friday the Dolphins will conduct a three-day rookie minicamp and right there, among the rookie linebackers, A.J. Edds will be on the field wearing No. 54 -- the number worn from 1996-2007 by Zach Thomas.

It must be noted that on its face this isn't a bad thing. The Dolphins have many linebackers on the roster and every number in the 50s including 54 has been assigned. The Dolphins have also held back No. 54 for two years until now. The number is not retired.

I also recall the Dolphins in the past gave away Mark Clayton's number the year after he left via free agency. Clayton was a great player like Thomas, although not as beloved by fans.

But none of that changes the fact that the timing of this is terrible. The context of giving out that number now is bad.

You see, Zach Thomas is one of the most beloved players ever to play for the Dolphins. He lived right, played hard, and gave the Dolphins everything he had (including some brain cells following a handful of concussions).

The guy is an all-timer down here.

But only a couple of weeks ago, Thomas took the Dolphins to task for their treatment of brother-in-law Jason Taylor. He did it publicly on the radio and in print interviews and it made people notice. When you've torqued off Zach Thomas, you've probably made a mistake.

Thomas also rolled back the curtain on his feelings regarding his own dismissal from the Dolphins years ago.

He talked about how all he wanted to do the day he got waived in 2008 was say good-bye to his fans by talking to the media at the team training facility in a press conference. The Dolphins did allow Thomas to make phone calls to various media from the facility but told him if he wanted to do a press conference, he'd have to do it elsewhere. Thomas obviously feels hurt by that to this day.

And he said as much in recent weeks.

Well, the awarding of No. 54 on the heels of the former player's comments looks bad. I'm sure it is pure coincidence. I know there were several internal conversations about this very subject in recent days going all the way up the ladder to include coach Tony Sparano.

But that doesn't change the fact that it looks bad.

The timing of this makes it look like retribution.

It looks like: You criticize us, we give away your number.

Edds wore No. 49 at Iowa. The Dolphins should have given him that number for this coming rookie mini-camp. They should have let him wear it through training camp. And if, if, Edds earned a spot on the roster after training camp, they could have changed his number into the 50s. After all, a couple of the numbers currently taken such as No. 59 (J.D. Folsom) and No. 57 (Brian Johnson) might or might not be around for the start of the regular-season anyway.

Edds Moreover, if the Dolphins absolutely needed to give Edds No. 54, they could have turned a potential flub into a touchdown if they wanted. They could have called Thomas in, let him sign a contract for a day, and promptly allowed him to retire a Dolphin. He could have then handed that No. 54 jersey to Edds, and gotten his farewell press conference in one fell swoop.

Is there anyone who thinks that would not have been a feel-good moment?

It would have sown seeds of good will. It would have diffused an issue that might leave a bad taste in the mouth of some fans during a time they're deciding whether or not to buy tickets for 2010. (It also would have saved me from having to write this post.)

The point is the Dolphins are lately showing they do not have clear vision about what some fans, the rest of the NFL, the NFLPA, the media, or their alumni are thinking. They seem to be somewhat out of touch in that regard.

Thankfully, none of this has to do with actual football. From a football standpoint these guys are nails. They got it right from A to Z.

But when you blow stuff like the JT saga, or this little No. 54 issue, or prostitutegate, it affects the way the football team is viewed and respected. And the respect and good name of the Miami Dolphins is very, very, very, very important.

It is sad that tomorrow when the rookie camp opens, some focus that should be on how great this draft class might be will veer toward why A.J. Edds is wearing Zach Thomas's jersey. That alone shows you it's a mistake.

None of this is rocket science. But how many perceived black eyes can folks take in one offseason?

[Evening update: The link to the roster on the Dolphins website above has been altered by the team. It orginally showed Edds having been awarded No. 54, Koa Misi wearing No. 55, and John Jerry wearing No. 74. But that roster has been changed out. The Dolphins took down the roster they had on their website that showed the numbers for Edds and all the other rookies and substituted this roster instead. I would say the team felt some pressure from folks seeing Edds wearing No. 54 before it was ready to announce the move. It is also possible the team, after consideration or reading this blog, might have changed its mind and not give Edds No. 54 tomorrow after all. Maybe the Dolphins don't have a desire to create more PR problems. We'll see tomorrow when the rookie minicamp kicks off.] 


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beach, its not a big deal, let it go. This whole # represents the person BS is getting old. Dan Marino was the face of this franchize for yrs. Zac was not!!

Ashly-6'2 and no i cant slam dunk for sh*!*lol*

beachhjester............ ZACH LEGACY ?????? IS HE A ROBN HOOD ?????


Anyone who says a number isn't important never played, or they sucked. Your number is your name.
Posted by: beachjester | April 29, 2010 at 06:52 PM

Exactly. Most of these people are too young to remember but until the merger, players in the NFL (and college) only had numbers....no names.

Guy's seize and desist the name of HOT ASHLEY,I'll only post under the menaces name and leave my name after the posts,any other HOT ASHLEY posts are fraudulent. but Iam truly Flattered by my stalker. xxxx and ooooo.HOT ASHLEY

oh boy that hurt "Rodge"


The question is do we have a strong young core at FS? You would think if that if the Trifecta liked what they saw in Clemons or Culver they wouldn't have tried to sign Rolle or Clark. Who knows if Jones is the real deal until he gets on the field. Heres hoping he will be. I'll be rooting for him big time!


Uhhhh. If I came on here to talk pr I would love this story. But I came here talk football. And I leave disappointed

Posted by: Jordi | April 29, 2010 at 06:55 PM

Jordi, Now you know how your wife/girlfriend/misstress feels.... lol, j.k...............................

As far as i am thinking ,the number doesn't matter ,the goods are in a man .

Sometimes I feel the same way menace.HOT ASHLEY

Dammit Cuban,

I even grabbed my tape measurer so that i could make sure my response was Sincere and honest, o well back to the paper ads for me!!!!*THANX A LOT*

CentralFLfinfan, I don't know what we have exactly at safety. Nobody really does until they play. Even if they aren't the best, it can't be worse than Gibril last year. What would we have lost starting Clemons or J Allen? I was pissed when Saban drafted J Allen. But the kid makes plays when he's in. The tapes don't lie. I'm sorry beachjester, maybe I was out of line. I got love for all the Dolfans!

Couldn't never get into that movie ALoco, Soldier is on Spike....good flick.


Hot Ashley,

Does the Menace leave you all alone for long hours at a time?

I still think Sharper could add a lot to this young secondary, the guys a leader not a cancer like thomas would be, would contribute and be a hell of a mentor for guys like Jones and carrol. And he did have 9 picks last year.

I am tired of all this krap too. Let's just stop talking about so carlito can chill down. Name calling on Armando, Judas Priest.

This team was ONE AND FIFTEEN when Parcells and Co. took over. They were like the computer in MADDEN. You could run on em throw on em make stupid lop sided trades with them. They were the laughing stock of the NFL. Teams used to circle us as a win when they saw us on the shcedule. Jason Taylor nor Zack Thomas had anything to do with the turn around. This is FOOTBALL not dancing with the stars. No room for hyper sensitive wussies. These guys are hard core, blue collar, take no prisoners bunch, and they lead by example. Players have become like that and now its the fans turn to toughen up and stop living in the past.

bob g 'what are you a albino.... wimp!DOLPHINS FOR LIFE!

I like most of what the trifecta has done but I'm bewildered by some of their moves. They should have added more NTs from day 1. I've been complaint about their d-line since Bowens retired. I know I talk about Bowens a lot but he was an unsung hero for that defense. He was disruptive from his rookie year and on. We need a disruptive force at yhe MOST important position on defense


No Unfortunately, But where I work I leave him by himself for hours, They say absence makes the love grow stronger.Though I have no proof of that personally.HOT ASHLEY., Just Kidding.

SuperFIN I feel your peace. And have fun in here, but a parting note: "Zach Thomas has more tackles than any linebacker in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, currently ranking fourth all-time behind Randy Gradishar, Jessie Tuggle and Junior Seau."

But hey, what's that really mean....

I liked Bowens as well Rodge...much better than John Bosa..lol..remember him. Also, I'm glad you mentioned it first but I kinda like Jason Allen's play of late as well. At least he'll tackle somebody and he's a good special teamer too.


Like i said Zac was good in his prime, one of miamis great players to ever play here, but when i think of how good thomas was, i dont need a # to represent what that person accomplished in the past. His play on the field spoke enuff about that. PEACE!!!

Hot Ashley,

LOVE?!?! Don't know nuttin bout it.

I won't win your heart or sweep you off your feet. But.........

If you're looking for a retardedly raunchy weekend, I'm that guy!

cool breeze superPHIN!

Miami is looking sick this year, Henne & Co. to the Moon !!!

Later ~

Done,Odinseye my love .

I hate your journalism style. You love to create controversy no matter what to take advantage of it. Why don’t you go to spread your poison away from here? These guys are setting up a super bowl team. Let them alone.
Xavier, Montreal

Odinseye, Thanks but I already got a semi-retard of my own.XXXXX and OOOOOs to you. HOT ASHLEY

Brandon Marshall didn't care what number he gets and I doubt Edds cares either. I want to see him play well; his number certainly doesn't matter to me. Best wishes to Thomas, but this is football. There is just too much nitt picking going on. Let's play some good football.

Thanks,cuban my love .


I like the Revenge of the Nerds when they go to Fort Lauderdale for spring break?

Please tell me which one is your favorite from Nerds: Booger, Ogre, or Lamar?

This will tell us all alot about you.

The only thing that matters about a number is what's "Rolled" in it in my opinion.HOT ASHLY



Oh yeah, don't even try playing hard to get with me.
I can read between those..........lines. BooYaah!!!!


Did i turn you on odinseye ?

OK guy's A certain Law enforcement officer just got back with some Chinese food so I'll Talk at you guy's later.Peace out.Maybe he'll break out the hand-cuffs later, but more then likely he'll bust out the Taser, Which kinda hurts my nipples. HOT ASHLEY

ALoco, the soldier (Kurt Russell) was bred from childhood to be a warrior. In a contest with one of the newer genetically altered replacements, he gets killed or so they think. He gets dumped on a junkyard planet where there's a small colony of people barely surviving. Big showdown at the end.



I am feeling much better thank you... As long as I don't read Mando's writing for the past week I will be fine... It make me sad to say that, I am a Mando fan, but I can not sit by quietly

Did i turn you on odinseye ?

Posted by: HOT ASHLEY | April 29, 2010 at 07:34 PM

I LIKE the way you type my NAME!

Carlito, Then sit Quietly, And guy's Ashley has just finished a bottle of wine. almost time for bed I think..... Now where did i put that darn Taser?????lol

Odin, That was the fake Ashley bro.....


Anybody know or have an opinion on which side of the line John Jerry will play on?

I'm hoping Jerry and Cognito put the other guys on the depth bench.

Odinseye,what about me,don't you like me ?

Odin, That was the fake Ashley bro.....

Posted by: Cuban Menace | April 29, 2010 at 07:47 PM

I'm not picky, fake ashes need lovin too!

I need all that you can give and more my Odinseye .

give him #99 and change his name to hooker

Mando your hate of the Trifecta is really beginning to bore me as a reader. Its pretty clear that in your world if it is raining, its the Trifecta's fault.

As two of the marquee players for the Dolphins during that time, Zach Thomas and Jason Taylor were not worthy of their jerseys being retired the moment they stopped playing for the team. While I liked and respected both as Dolphins, each has only won three playoff games in their Dolphin career, and none of those wins were in the same playoff season. They never took the team past the Divisional round. As a fan what I remember was the disappointment associated with their tenures.

Press conferences, jersey retirements, and reunions are meant for players like Dan Marino, or the members of the 72 team. When push came to shove, Marino could have left to try to win a title, but he stayed. Lets not forget that.

Odin, If you ever make a Blundering/looting/rape escapade to New york make sure it's in Brooklyn, and if you get injured make sure you get transferred to Coney Island Hospital Emergency room, Look for a Hawaiian looking girl, 5 ft 9in, 125 lbs, (about 20 lbs of which are boobs) taking X'Rays, Thats my HOT ASHLEY.

Rodge, the Eye in the sky don't lie.... I like the way this guy thinks....

Odinseye,what about me,don't you like me ?

Posted by: HOT ASHLEY | April 29, 2010 at 07:49 PM

Don't tempt me, you can't handle the "Rodeo Burger"!

Odin, Oh yeah, Make sure you have Insurance,because They dont take american express....lol

Hawaiian looking girl, 5 ft 9in, 125 lbs, (about 20 lbs of which are boobs) taking X'Rays, Thats my HOT ASHLEY.

Posted by: Cuban Menace | April 29, 2010 at 07:55 PM

A STACKED Hawaiian AND radiation. I never tried that before.
Why not, I'll try anything once or twice or three times or ten.

you name your boy ( rodeo burger ) ?

Met her the nite I was shot,As the saying goes "It was the worse of times, and the best of times"......

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