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Dolphins own free agent priority? Paul Soliai

Much of the unrestricted free agent focus surrounding the Dolphins' own players has centered around the offensive backfield in general and running backs Ronnie Brown and Ricky Williams in particular.

I would tell you that is probably not the place the Dolphins should be placing their priority.

I would tell you the priority should be on defense. Right in the middle of all the action. At nose tackle.

Paul Soliai.

Soliai, drafted in 2007, is expected to hit free agency once the players' union and the NFL get their act together and agree on a collective bargaining agreement. He will not re-sign with Miami before a new collective bargaining agreement is reached, according to a league source, because he wants to maximize his earning potential and the 30 percent rule makes it hard to do that until after his current contract expires and he becomes a free agent.

So the Dolphins have "zero," chance of re-signing Soliai before he hits free agency, the source close to the player said Tuesday.

What does that mean?

It means the biggest body on the Miami defensive line, the player who started 14 games at nose tackle for Miami last year, will hit free agency assuming the league does not establish a lull period during which current teams have exclusive rights to negotiate with their own players.

I am told if Soliai hits the open market, it will be a free-for-all. He wants to remain with the Dolphins. But he wants to get paid. And there will be interest because there always is for a 355 pound defensive lineman that has proven he can play.

In talks between the Dolphins and agent David Canter, I am told by my source, the Dolphins are being cautious. Canter could not be reached for comment, but I'll keep trying. He is, after all, a weekly contributor on my radio show Armando and the Amigo.

I can understand why no deal has been reached yet. Soliai played better than he has at any time in his career in 2010 so he wants to be rewarded. The Dolphins are almost certainly guarding themselves against Soliai being a one-year wonder because he's been a reserve his previous three seasons.

Thus we have a gap that needs to be bridged.

Soliai was very good last year, tying Kendall Langford for the lead in solo tackles among defensive linemen with 33. He also led all defensive linemen with eight tackles for losses with eight. Bottom line, when the Dolphins lost defensive end Jared Odrick after the regular-season opener and needed to move Randy Starks from nose tackle back to defensive end, Soliai's play made that possible.

I imagine the Dolphins could retry the Starks at nose tackle experiment, but the bottom line is Soliai was more productive than any starting nose tackle the Dolphins have had under their current administration. So they should do everything possible to keep from losing that kind of talent.

There is also an inherent risk for the Dolphins in being overly cautious with Soliai. Unless they get that lull period, they could risk losing him to another team. And the New York Jets could be in the market for a starting nose tackle.

Just saying.


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Hey Kris I know, no one ever makes a mistake here, and they are all experts. I remember last year most people on this blog calling him a bum, and that he should never be on the Dolphin roster, and what a mistake it was to even draft him. I bet these same experts are begging to sign him now.

I'm expecting Ireland and TS to run Solai off to the jets...

Mike33076....lol...the ego's are crazy......and thats all I rember last year was Soliai was garbage.....now if you go back and re-read...we ger "flickers"....there is nothing wrong....with being ....wrong......thats the beauty of being a fan....no consequences....unless your ego gets in the way....

El Coach....lets hope not.....they should franchise hime and negotiate next year

Thx, They don't make it easy do they. But it would make it easier for the fans to understand why they make some of the decisions they make. Why keep it a secret NFL ??????????

Who cares?

The Dolphins Suck

Sign 6.6 255 lb QB Cam Newton or
Nothing At All

Right Now
The Dolphins Suck

Cam Newton is bigger than Big Ben and

Chad Henne is a proven back up at best

For the Haters -

I don't think Soliai is a one hit wonder. He didn't have all that bad of a season in '09 either in a back up role.

Seems to me he is in a natural progression....you know....you get drafted and then you get better as time goes on. Think about when you came out of college and your first job....were you better at that job after 4 years of experience? Of course you were.

Why do so many on this blog think that everyone who is drafted...regardless of where they were drafted....regarless of position, etc....why do so many think that everyone is supposed to come out All-Pro right out of the gate? The guy was a 4th round (108th overall) pick!!!!

Add to that, everything I've ever heard about the NT position is that it is not a natural position...that it's virtually impossible to just go out and get a NT. Everything I've ever heard about that position is that it is learned over time primarily by large, veteran 4-3 tackles. This is what makes a 3-4 so difficult..you have to have that piece and that piece has to be good.

I'm sure he has also benefited from Nolan's tutilidge.

slow day at work today... so i am watching super bowl 17... damn, miami could have easily won that game

Not to mention Soliai was a DE in college....because of his size he seemed better suited as a tackle in the NFL...and he had to learn that position.

dan henning... on the washington staff then.



yes...i remember, Gibbs brought him in.

i grew up watching these dolphin teams.. nice to go back in time.

aloco. has ireland found a qb yet.?.lol

aloco,p soup is made from vegetable peas btw, not urine.lol

grrrrr McNeal slips as he follows a player that goes in motion and cant recover quick enough to make a full tackle effort at Riggins...gggrrrrr TD Wash 1st lead of the game(4th qrt)

even though it kills me to watch, takes me back to when miami was relevant in the league

Now we have come full circle....if this Henning news is true.....

Many members of this blog conviently threw out 2008 and 2009 when judging Dan Henning on his offence....

Now if we have a football this year....we will have the chance for some interesting debate....and possible revionist history as we can compare Miami, Cleveland, and Redskin's Offence this year....should be fun.....

mcneal slipped on purpose. he wanted no part in riggens.lol

They should have given him an extension during
the season when they saw his play explode,now
they will pay or lose him.

lol... 2 watt! true that

mornin' kris - I think Kyle and ALoco are refering to the SB that Kyle is watching...where Dan Henning was the OC. To my knowledge Henning is still un-employed.

The Dolphins will let Soliai go to New England with Wes Welker. Then they'll sign some former Cowboy"s pratice squad J.O. As far as being cautious, NOW THEY'RE GOING TO BE CAUTIOUS!!!! Where in the hell was cautious with the whole Sporano - Ireland thing. What a bunch of FFFFFFing IDIOTS!!!

Excellent point Hank....and that probably would have been easier...and no doubt cheaper than negotiating with no contract or franchising him

ohhhh.....thanks Wolfman...i didn't know he worked for the Skins back then...most of my Football history is tied to the Dolphins....embarassing....

and Good Morning!

wolfman you are correct...speaking of SB17 and Henning on the Wash staff then... didnt mean to confuse anyone

kris, he(Henning) worked for the Dolphins back in the late 70s as well... lol

No need to apologize Kyle.....its my ignorance thats on display....

NY G -

there's a couple teams in your neck of the woods that has plenty of room on their band wagon. I say jump on and stay off Dolphin blogs. You just add to the misery that is Miami Dolphin football fans. Enjoy your Jets!

Riggins fumbles at the 2 min warning... no replay back then... just have to eat the bad call.

Shorter Armando Salguero:

Fins' "Brain" Trust About to make another mistake.

next play after the no fumble call, Thiesman hits Brown in the corner of the front end of the end zone, doesnt get his feet down, but since he was pushed and he would have landed, TD.. final nail on the coffen

Has anyone heard anything in RE to the CBA...and if it doesn't get done before the draft....will the rooky cap be retroactive or strictly go forward basis?

I was thinking about this last night in RE to taking a QB in the 1st round....not only the Fins, but the host of other teams in need of a QB. Being that taking a QB in the 1st is a boom/bust proposition....if the cap is only on a go forward basis....I'm wondering if teams will pass these guys up in the 1st with the idea that 1) hopefully they could land them in the 2nd; or 2) just wait until next year where they can shoot craps with say $15-30M & 6 yrs vs. the mega bucks and guarantees they would have to fork out this year.

Just a thought.

Interesting draft prospect breakdown via a Dolphin lens....


If they could land Mike Pouncey of Florida or Penn State’s Stefan Wisniewski to plug in at G then tat could be a pretty solid 1st pick. The RT Gabe Carimi of Wisconsin would be good too. All three appear to be instant starters.

I still like Julio Jones to add a dynamic pop to the offense, though I understand the Dolphins staff has no interest in that.

The break down on Newton actually leaves me believing he would be a good pick at #15. If he were still on the board. The story says the Dolphins are looking at Vince Young which is very interesting to me.

Still think Ingram is a poor value pick, any RB in the 1st round actually.

NBC crew gives a lot of credit to.... Dan Hennings for a very creative off game plan...lol

Here are some facts that some might find interesting regarding lock out rules.

When does the lockout begin?

The current CBA expires when the clock strikes midnight on March 3. At this point, almost all league activity will stop — players will not be allowed to enter their team facilities to workout or rehab, coaches will not be allowed to hold any offseason practices, and teams will not be allowed to sign free agents, trade players or extend any contracts. And players currently under contract will not see another dime until a new CBA is signed.

What are the two sides fighting about?

Simply put, the owners want more money. The players are generally happy with the league the way it is currently constructed. But the owners want to scale back the percentage of gross revenue the players receive (currently 59 percent of approximately $8 billion, compared to 57 percent for NHL players, 55 percent for NBA and 43 percent for MLB). And the owners want to add two more regular season games, which would add two more games of TV money, ticket revenues, food sales, etc. But the owners don’t want to compensate the players for the extra games. Their argument is that 18 regular season and 2 preseason games is the same as 16 regular season and 4 preseason games.

The owners felt like they gave away too much in the last CBA negotiations in 2006. So now they’re trying to take some back. The players haven’t relented yet.

What do the players want?

The players definitely don’t want an 18-game schedule. It adds two extra games of wear-and-tear on the body and will increase injuries and shorten careers. And if they are forced to play two more games, they DEFINITELY want to get compensated for the two extra games by having their contracts pro-rated upwards by two more games.

If the players are forced to concede to the owners — and it looks like the 18-game schedule is an inevitability, either in 2011 or 2012, based on when the CBA will be signed — then they want some concessions from the owners, too. Among them: A second bye week, to help them maintain their bodies throughout the grueling season; a shorter offseason program and less demanding training camp; increased roster sizes; a shorter route to unrestricted free agency (it currently takes four years to be a restricted free agent, five years for unrestricted); and more flexible injury rules (currently, an injured player only has two options — remain on the active 53-man roster as he heals his injury, or be placed on Injured Reserve and have his season ended).

The players also likely want a rookie salary cap — determining a rookie’s salary based on his draft position — but NFLPA leadership isn’t thrilled about the idea. For them to agree to a rookie salary cap, they want assurances that the money will flow back to the veteran players, instead of back into the owners’ pockets. The players also disagree with the owners’ contention that they make 59 percent of gross revenues. The owners take about $1 billion of revenues off the top for league expenses, so the players argue that they really only make about 50 percent of gross revenues.

How close are the two sides?

Not close. Commissioner Roger Goodell said Friday at the Super Bowl that “the commitment on behalf of the ownership is to get an agreement, and we will get an agreement,” but purposely avoided any specifics about when that will happen. The two sides haven’t yet held any meaningful negotiations.

What about the NFL Draft?

The draft is the only league activity that will be held as planned. It will be April 28-30 in New York City, and will have the same format as last year — First round on Thursday night, Rounds 2-3 on Friday and Rounds 4-7 on Saturday. But if a new CBA is not agreed to by then, teams will not be allowed to trade players on draft day, only picks. The Dolphins’ draft-day trade last year — giving the 12th pick to San Diego for the 28th and 40th picks and linebacker Tim Dobbins — will not be allowed this time, making it more difficult for teams to move up and down the draft board.

Also, teams will not be allowed to sign undrafted players after the draft until a new CBA is signed. If you think that’s insignificant, think again — current undrafted free agents on the Dolphins include Davone Bess, Marlon Moore and Patrick Cobbs. And the draft picks will also not be allowed to sign until a new CBA is put in place.

Will the owners make money during the lockout?

Yes. They will still receive about $4 billion from their TV contracts. This is the owners’ trump card. With money still pouring in, they can try to out-last the players, who can do nothing but try to save their money.

What about the coaches?

Yes, they will still get paid, though the assistant coaches may have clauses in their contracts that pay them less than 100 percent of their salary in case of a lockout.

What will the players do in the meantime?

Starting March 4, players will have to workout on their own, find new places to rehab their injuries and buy their own health insurance. The NFLPA made several visits to each team during the season to educate the players about different insurance plans and stress the importance of saving money. The NFLPA also is setting up deals gyms in various cities around the country for the players to workout with each other (if you live in Atlanta go here, if you live in Phoenix go here, etc.).

Will they really cancel games in 2011?

Don’t bet on it. The players and owners are too smart to miss any games. It would be a complete PR disaster for both sides and could squander a lot of the positive momentum the NFL has built in becoming the country’s dominant sport over the past 10 years. But an agreement might not happen until August, which means no mini-camps and OTAs and possibly an abbreviated training camp.

i think it goes to show how inept T Sporano is at managing to get the best players on the field regardless of hierarchy or ol friendships from dallas...

why did we have to wait a year to play Wake when everyone saw his first play he was a beast?

Regarding the threatened owners lock out, I read a very interesting interview with Ricky.

Say what you like about Ricky, he is smart and remarkable candid.

He became the players rep and described how the owners claim they are not making enough money, yet are unwilling to show the books.

So until the players can see how the owners are not making money then there is a stalemate.

Especially since the owners are demanding so many other concessions.

Also interesting how Armando postures the situation as the league and players need to get the act together, never mentioning the owners.

This is a lock out folks, by the owners.

Beerphin...that is a question I would love a reporter to ask Tony....and when he starts saying stuff like..."weak against the run"....still green".....or whatever other coach speak....they need to follow up with real questions...till they get a real answer....

The sam questions should be asked about our rookie WRs....good enough to walk on...not good enough to play in any meaniful games.....

Dressing 25 O-Linemen regardless of team or situation....while Fat Rex has the common sense to dress 11 D-backs for the playoff game against the Colts....

Thats coaching to the team and the situation.....playing your defense against the opposing teams strenghth

The GM is well aware who the FA's are and what priorities they have. Seems silly for Armando to imply otherwise.

Oregon, a couple of weeks ago there was a very eye opening article by Forbes on the impending lock out. If you poke around, you can probably find it.

Man, I'm thinking that if a CBA doesn't get done until late summer that could make this entire rooky class practically irrelevant for 2011. No training camp/abbreviated training camp...no OTAs. Just look at what happens to the hold out guys...they're always way behind the curve. I just don't see the rookies being able to get up to speed in time for the season if that happens. They'll be using the season just to start learning the playbook.

it's obvious to all yet none in the FO Ross is flying blindly with only parcells to reassure him to stay the course w/ his inept son in law whom he made a head coach w/o any prior reasons to actually be qualified for the job... pretty shady if you ask me

For some reason I even see Ted Ginn jr.'s failure somehow a result of negative coaching... WR are supposedly divas and no Ginn didn't break out to a #1 but he wasn't even given a chance as a an actual #2 receiver. He could have been complimentary to Marshall and used better I don't care if it was just reverses and KR/PR he could have been used better... I'm not really ok with Armando questioning whether or not he was that into football or has no passion. U don't grow up in football family and wind up w no passion for the game. Anyways alot of mistakes seem to have been made by letting people go for no apparent reason another ie. Erik Walden very promising on special teams now he is showing out for the packers would have been a starter on a superbowl defense that looked very good sooo yea the jury is out on this one T. Sporano and the rest of the FO are totally inept



i give sparano credit for moving his bowels. thats all.


Don Shula says..."i'll just have to live with that".....I respect a man that takes responsibility....rather than make excuses.....

So after reading the rules to the lockout. Do you "Draft a First Round Quarterback Guys) understand why this is bad year to go this route? NO Practice...No playbook...Nothing.
Imagine we draft a guy(insert your favorite) Player X gets has no opportunity to learn anything about our offense. How do our reciever progressions work(or don't) How do we call our protections? Player X comes into a shortened training camp. Now because the team is on a shortened time line. The majority of the reps go to the first team guys. Gotta get ready for the season. So basically, this player is going a full preseason with little exposure to the offense. So much for development this year. It just makes a difficult job even harder.

Now the argument is...."Well player x was going to sit and learn anyway" Maybe. But do not think for a second the loss of those early practices is not a HUGE deal. You never get those reps back. None of the quartrbacks that may be available @ 15 are ready to play week 1. Throw in all of these factors, and we have a guy who may not be ready to play until the NEXT season.

I understand why some are frustrated, and think this is the time to pull the trigger. Under this CBA mess. I have said it for weeks, and will say it again. This is the worse year to draft a first round quarterback. Now if the CBA is resolved before the draft, and the rules change where there are practices, and they even have playbooks. I reserve the right to change my mind...

Darryl - I'm pretty much in agreement. I think the whole rooky class is going to be an afterthough this season if the CBA doesn't get hammered out until late summer.

Just think...these guys are going to be rolling into an abreviated training camp...possibly no training camp...just showing up. Out of shape...overweight....lazy....still reliving their college highlight reel. Never mind having to learn an entire play book, getting comfortable with your teammates, etc. These rookies won't be ready for anything until the season is pretty much over.

Daryl...I understand every thing you said....but doesn't history pretty much tell us that if you draft a QB 1st RD he's gonna sit out and miss most of training camp anyway.....

In my mind thats how I see it....if we got one in to camp during pre-season I think it would be the exception rather than the rule....

In any case I would be shocked if he started day one....I think you dragt the QB YOU WANT for the future...not necessarilly for just the upcomming season...

So in my opinion there is nothing lost....

This was his contract year, so he had to step it up or not get paid. I would be cautious with his resigning. He's been over weight, not focused at times, and has been on and off the active roster for the last 3 years and now he finally makes progress?? I hope they consider all of that when they get with his agent, and if they want more than what we offer, then just let him test the free agent waters. Solai should consider when bargaining that Sparano gave him a chance to shine in those 3 years when we could easily cut him. I say offer him a 2 yr contract with an option on the 3rd based on his performance. If he busts out next year, we can just cut him.

a 5th grader could tell you it was a good idea to move Soliai to NT hes 6'3 355 what do you think?

When I say sit-out..I mean hold-out....contract negotioations...happens every year

@ 12:19 My point about having a first round guy that may not be ready to play at all next year. Is that if our quarterback play is so bad again in 2011(eliminate the rookies) There are a plethora(Do you even know what a plethora is?) of guys that look much more inviting then this 2011 class. I know the pro- draft a guy this year guy is going to hate this comment. But if we have a guy that has little or no chance to play this year. Why not wait?

Also...in RE to taking a 1st round QB. I think I'd rather see them wait until next season. If my predictions come true.....2011 will be TS's final season as head coach of the Fins....probably Ireland will be gone as well. There you go...5 year re-build didn't happen...start over.

What I'm trying to say is that if we go 1st round QB (which we are long overdue) I'd rather be starting over period...new coach...new FO....new staff.....new re-build.

Whoever comes in should have a solid base to work with on Defense and should be able to focus on the offense. Hopefully they would keep Nolan on board as well.

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