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Free agency only one month away

Today is February 13th. One month from now, on March 13th, the NFL's second season begins when free agency kicks off in earnest.

Offseason? What freakin' offseason!?

This is the NFL and it's a wonderful ever-expanding snowball rolling downhill in soon-to-be avalanche proportions. There is no stopping it!

And so with one month separating the Dolphins from the first day of free agency, I want to discuss ... what else ... free agency.

First let's begin with Miami's free agents:

The unofficial list of Miami unrestricted free agents: Vernon Carey, Marc Colombo, Ike Alama-Francis, Chad Henne, Kendall Langford, JP Losman, Phillip Merling, Marvin Mitchell, Steve Slaton, Paul Soliai, Will Allen.

[CORRECTION: The Dolphins tell me Merling is actually a restricted free agent based on the fact he did not play enough games in 2010 when he was on the non-football injury list for it to count as a credited season. So he has three years of experience, thus he is restricted.]

The unofficial list of Miami restricted free agents: Lex Hilliard, Lydon Murtha, Ryan Baker.

Am I concerned about either list? I suppose the short answer is no.

There is only one Pro Bowl player on the list and that's Paul Soliai, who earned a trip to the game this past season as a substitute for another player. I have serious doubts Soliai will be coming back to the Dolphins based on the fact his agent David Canter is very aggressive and Soliai doesn't intend to give the Dolphins any sort of hometown discount.

Kendall Langford is a also a nice player although I believe the Dolphins should not overpay for a player who basically has more of a reputation for not making mistakes rather than, you know, making plays.

Phillip Merling? So much potential. So gifted. But it simply doesn't seem to come together for him for whatever reason -- be it immaturity or lack of professionalism.

Everyone else on the unrestricted list is likely done with the Dolphins. Vernon Carey, 32 in July, might be able to stay in Miami as a minimum salary guy but that is frankly the high end of his value. His days of getting a big contract ended after he got his big deal after the 2008 season and then he delivered two inconsistent years in 2009 and '10 in which his play rose and dipped like a nervous stock market. Any team that is willing to go that route again will likely suffer the same result.

Bottom line on Carey is he's a good player when he's hungry and the only way to keep him hungry is to keep him on a one-year contract.

I assume with Tony Sparano gone, the Dallas Cowboys offensive line connection to Marc Colombo will also disappear. Sparano believed in Colombo to the point when the media openly questioned the acquisition of the past-his-prime stop-gap Colombo last summer, Sparano came to his defense and offered, "I watched the tape," on Colombo as proof certain Colombo would be good.

And Colombo was good if one eliminates pass-blocking from his list of responsibilities. He yielded nine sacks in 2011 by my unofficial count. He gave up about twice as many pressures. The man was simply overmatched at times out there because he simply hasn't the quickness to get in front of people. Run blocking was his forte and he did it with enthusiasm and proficiency most of the time. Unfortunately, the NFL is a passing league now. And so pass-blocking is at a premium.

And so, if the Dolphins even attempt to re-sign this guy, it'll be a joke and a statement that upgrade is not what this offseason is about. But I believe that is exactly what this offseason is about so I'm not worried about Colombo being part of the mix again.

I am going to miss Colombo serenading the media in the locker room as he did once this season. Yup, a group of media people were apparently standing too close to his locker for his comfort once during the season while they were waiting for another player to interview.

Colombo, who dislikes the media, went to his locker and began singing, "(bleep) you mother(bleepers), (bleep) you all .... mother(bleepers) ... (bleep) you ..."

He used a word more colorful than "bleep."

It was a shining moment of NFL professionalism.

Chad Henne remains on the lips of many Dolphins fans and general manager Jeff Ireland continues to include Henne every time he discusses Miami's quarterback situation. But who are we kidding?

Henne is better off elsewhere. And Henne will be elsewhere if the Dolphins do what they have to do and address the QB situation this offseason.

Simply, there is no room for a former starter in his mid-20s on the team. The club is looking for a starter and if that man is found, Matt Moore will be the experienced backup -- not Henne. A fourth QB, you say?

That fourth player should be a developmental quarterback that might ascend to something rather than have to recover from a poor (31 TDs, 37 INTs) record as a starter, which is what Henne has to do.

I wouldn't be surprised seeing Henne in Washington or Detroit or Indianapolis.

Tomorrow: Free agents Dolphins should be interested in.

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Odin
Got snow ?

Posted by: most chipper | February 13, 2012 at 01:38 PM

Not enough, but the windchill keeps putting us below zero.

I'd trade degrees of warmth for inches of SNOW!

Wonder what Vince Wilfork had for lunch today?

Home was out in the south Florida sun an hour ago
catching some rays

U slaves dont know yet, ...
When the ground freezes, head south :)

PG,
Not my point at all. There's no nitpicking involved. We got bashed by this stuff by more than a few people on here that 'the Pats just keep on getting better' and these were the two guys people used as examples.
What it shows is that Bellichick and New England make mistakes too.
Posted by: Craig M | February 13, 2012 at 11:56 AM

mr. i told ya so is baaaaack! pats went to the superbowl a year after not making it. That sure sounds like they got better, dontcya think? what a blow hard!

SHORT GMCR

Odin,

What do u think Vince Wilfork would look like in a pink thong bathing suit?

Craig/Kris, not sure what you don't think is fair about my criticism. OBVIOUSLY, if our team has degraded over the 4 year span, there's SOMETHING Ireland (or whomever was playing GM) was not doing to create that void of talent (which every analyst says we have here in Miami).

I'm pointing to these types of things, and I call them gimmicks. Like looking to the CFL for players (do all teams do that? I'm asking because I don't know. Since I'm here I read/hear a lot about the Redskins, they don't do that). Or going to Montana, because Ireland loves the HC or something, so keeps going back there for players. Or going to the ex-Cowboys.

Can you guys NOT see the patterns in Ireland's moves? I can. Ask yourselves why that is (that there are those patterns)? You're right, might be nothing, just coincidence. But if so, we wouldn't be a mediocre team.

I have no problem Ireland turning over every rock to try and find talent. I just know there's about 1/2 the league which has found better talent than we have (and I don't hear about them scouring in the places Ireland has). Maybe the way Ireland assesses talent needs to be re-thought. I don't know. I just know the outcome of his 4 years as GM. And it certainly hasn't been glowing.

Accept mediocrity if you guys want, it's your opinion. I'm NOT accepting mediocrity.

Kris, I'm especially surprised at your statement. So, I'm deducing from your logic here that Ireland (or Parcells or whomever) provided Sparano a team CHOCK FULL OF talent, but Sparano just couldn't coach them, is that it? Because, you hate on Sparano for the last 4 years (even got on me for feeling sorry for the guy), but now seem to give Ireland a pass for the last 4 years. Is that an accurate assessment of your feelings towards Ireland?

If so, I'd ask you to review any NFL analysts' views about the Miami Dolphins. I haven't read/heard ONE where they say this team is stocked with talent.

Sparano is a self proclaimed NY Giant fan

Interesting how he is gonna fit in w the NY Jets?

A little snow and ice won't kill you! (Ok, it will if you're not careful).

Anyway We just had our Daytona 500 of snowmobile races a week ago.

Went up to Whitefish Bay for some Ice Fishing and ATV-ing on the Ice!

Heck, we even make our own home made Ice Cream up here. Except I think them Chem Trails really screwed my recipe this year!

YeeHaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaw!!!!

Offseason is the offseason armando, no big splashes coming to miami in free agency...forget manning, this team will probly give columbo an extension which will be the extent of miamis moves....oh yea and signing some other cfl prospect..*lmao*


Is it april yet???!!!

Someone thinks Moore is worth a number 1? This blog just went from full of dumb posts to the source of the dumbest post ever. Of all the stupid ideas that have been written here, that thought makes stupid an understatement. A #1 for Moore? ROTFLMAO. Modern medicine does indeed keep the brain dead alive... and posting.

The closest anyone got to thinking was Mando when he said the lists of unrestricted and restricted free agents didn't concern him; they shouldn't, we should jettison every one of those players except Henne.

Armando,

Every year sports writers in this town want the Dolphins to emulate the succesful franchises. Green Bay, New England, The Giants, Steelers etc. One thing all of these guys do is they DO NOT over spend in free agency. These teams ALL build thru the draft. Yet when free agency starts you and all the other writers and radio host in Miami lambast the Dolphins if they are not "agressive" in free agency. But to be "agressive" in free agency you have to over spend because you have to beat out the bottom dwellers of the league that believe "one guy" can get us over the hump. My advice? Resign as many of your own guy's as possible and maybe target a proven (NOT STAR) RT and OLB. Do the rest in the Draft.

The Miami Dolphins are stocked w talent.

Steelers r WAY OVER THE CAP!

we should jettison every one of those players except Henne.

Posted by: New Coach Wanted | February 13, 2012 at 01:55 PM

Marvin Mitchell too. He'll be real resonably priced, VERY young and produced when given the chance.

We're going to need help at LB and Mitchell can at least provide some badly needed depth.

Good afternoon guys...If any of you have a chance, go read Peter king's "Monday Morning QB" edition on CNNSI.COM...It's about when the Giants were scouting Eli Manning, particularly when GM Ernie Accorsi went down to watch Eli and Ole Miss play Jason Campbell and powerhouse Auburn...Great,great stuff...

DC,

You're an idiot who makes no sense. Thank goodness you are NOT in charge of acquiring talent for the Dolphins.

Have you ever noticed people getting defensive when others talk about their family or friends? Even if it's true. As if any criticism directed towards family/friends is an attack on them.

That's what I notice happens on this blog. Say the Parcells "way" is wrong in 2008, and you get battered (how dare you say that). Say it in 2012, everyone agrees.

Say Sparano's in over his head in '08, and you get a "give the guy a chance." Do it in 2012, and everyone's all in.

Say Henne is not going to ever be a franchise QB in '08, and you get a "give him some time. It took Manning 5 years to become legit." Do it in 2012 and people say, "DUH!"

Say Moore is a terrific backup and otherwise simply a placeholder mid-Season, and everyone wants to crucify you. Now, well, maybe not so much.

Why is that? Why do people think everything done here is going to work?

I don't do that. I listen to the criticism. I agree with a lot of it. I disagree with some. I talk to fans of other teams all the time. Ask their opinion of the Dolphins just to see what they see from the outside. Get a lot of great feedback.

It's not that hard to figure out. We haven't had an efficient offense since Marino days. And our defense has never been good enough to compensate. We have no continuity, therefore no identity, and generally lack playmakers on either side of the ball. That's the general consensus of this team from NFL watchers and analysts alike.

Defending Miami from this criticism will do NOTHING to make Miami better. Asking those who are in charge (ahem, IRELAND) to address these criticisms, which have been constant pretty much his whole tenure here, shouldn't be dismissed by longtime Dolphins fans. Those fans SHOULD want those criticisms addressed, because maybe then their team wouldn't be stuck in mediocrity year after year.

I agree Odin. I forgot about the guy but his history shows continuous and substantial improvement marked by great gains in productivity... until this past season with the Dolphins. Use the guy right and he may be a very good player. As it is, he was more productive than many of the players on that list - productive meaning he actually tackled someone and made some plays.

Just so you know, Messam was third in the CFL last year. He was the first Canadian in 11 years to get 1000 yards, but even that is misleading. Here in the Cowtown, Jon Cornish,another Canadian, who finished fifth in league rushing had a much better "tailback " season, he just took the starting role late in the year and had a much better YPC average.
Messam is more a fullback style runner.

Here`s the top 5

1. Brandon Whitaker, Montreal Alouettes 1,378 226 carries
2. Cory Boyd, Toronto Argonauts 1,141 187 carries
3. Jerome Messam, Edmonton Eskimos 1,057 195 carries
4. Avon Cobourne, Hamilton Tigercats 961 202 carries
5. Jon Cornish, Calgary Stampeders 863 119 carries

Does this mean Good Bye to Lex.He could`t punch it in anyways.

Does this mean that Clay will become a permanent Tight End next year? His size and speed numbers are very similar to Orson Charles, who`s generally accepted as the third best Tight End in this years draft.

Buh bye to Henne, Colombo, Carey, Soliai, Langford, Alama-Francis, Slaton, Langford, Losman and Allen. Bring back Mitchell and Merling. That's it. Time for new blood. Yes Soliai is very good but way too costly. We already have plenty of guys who can play DT, especially in 4-3.

Moore is not better than henne. What an idiot. Figures its poizen. Hey whereevesr henne ends up you can follow him there!

Tony, you're right, thank GOODNESS I haven't been the one to acquire talent last few years. I'd be embarrassed and ashamed that I could only muster 1 +.500 season in 4, otherwise fielding teams only known for their mediocrity.

You say I'm an idiot, but dare not speak about what you would do different from me. Why? Because chickenshyt posters like you find it easier to criticize than actually put out what THEY think.

How about this? You feel my ideas are idiotic, I can accept that. Tell us all your brilliant ideas. Who knows, maybe they are genius and we can all bow down to your awesomeness.

What I assume, however, is that you're ideas are less than genius, and that you'll get the same response as you've given to me.

We'll see if you choose to man up and offer your own thinking, or are just a happy, unimportant member of the peanut gallery.

Why all the hate for Ireland?

He went up to Edmonton and landed Messam.

He's on his way to American Somoa as we speak! Solia ain't putting Jeffy over the barrel.

Of course all the other Personel guys are following the pre-Combine Combines going on all over the place.

But ah........YEAH..........Jeffy's keeping busy!

DC....

I haven't hated on Sporano 4 the last 4 years...only about the last 2....when it became painfully apparent that he was little more than a care taker....and less of a coach....

He was a pawn in Parvells EGOTISTICAL game....Parcells knew that if NO NAME Sporano suceeded...the press would STILL give all the credit to Parcells....

However if a coach who can stand on his own...like a REX RYAN suceeded....Parcells would be shoved to the background like a movie extra....and Parcellls EGO coudn't handle that....

Take it back to the BEST DAY of BELICHEAT's life....not ANY of the 3 SB WINS....no....it was the day Belicheat turned down the jets (that was willed to him by Parcells)...and became HIS OWN MAN) with the Pats....therby...cutting the umbilical cord...and becomming one of the greatest coaches in NFL history....and not just another branch on the parcells tree...

I'm off topic....

more to follow in new post....

ESPN.com: "Eagles likely to franchise D.Jackson if they can't reach a long term deal...Darn! Didn't think the Eagles would do that...Oh well...

...DC. I challenge you to a duel..How dare you suggest selecting Montana players is a gimmick. Those are fighting words...I'll meet you at the Bowling alley 9 pm tonight..It's on!

Seriously..There are a LOT of scouts at these FCS games.In fact the University of had to add a section in the press box to accomadate the overflow of scouts this last year..

I'm not saying the Grizzly players are hall of fame quality. IMO the reason the Phins, and so many other teams scout the Grizzly players...Special teams. Many are going to laugh..This is why we are falling behind the rest of the league..The Phins waste their time scouting players that will have long odds to be playmakers, or elite players...Rosters are made up of a lot of different players who play certain roles..Montana under Bobby Hauck always stressed special teams play...the players drafted into the NFL that were recruited by Hauck..All made teams because they could play??? Special teams.. These guys are usually late round picks..So any contribution is satifactory. The fact everyone drafted in the last 4-5 years remain on rosters is a testament to the program..1 player Mariani was a pro bowler last year,another Colt Andersen was the Eagles special teams captain, and MVP this season..

I will go to bat all day for these players..They have all made a difference on their respective teams fighting long odds..No gimmick here.

Moore is not better than Henne.

Posted by: Poizen | February 13, 2012 at 12:49 PM

Get glasses! Not only is Moore better, he'll be here next year, quite possibly starting. Henne won't.

Nuff said. The Henne nonsense isn't even funny anymore.

Chad Henne...Good riddance...Enough with that...He's gone...Thank God!

DC....

In short....

Ireland gets a pass...because Parcells screwd him....

We don't know who was pulling the trigger in those war rooms....

apperantly...Ross believes it was Parcells...cause he let him walk with NO RESISTANCE...and sent his ball boy packing @ first chance that game along....heck...he tried to make him quit last season....but Tony only cared about the money...and not the integrity of the postion he was holding....or the direction of the team....

If you believe Armando's reports....Ross holds Ireland in higher regard than he does Jeff Fisher (i don't believe them by the way)....The condintions were...the COACH works for Ireland...take it or leave it....and that went for ALL applicants....no exceptions...

This team went 0-7....and then 6-3....

No consistency...is that the coach...or the GM....

answer that....objectively....

The team started slow 3-4 years....coach or GM....

in 09....after being 7-7 (like this years GIANTS)...I believe we controled our OWN destiny and just had to win to get in....we lost the REST of our games....with losses to the BILL....BROWNS...and LIONS....

is that on the COACH...or the GM....

After you answer those questions OBJECTIVELY....I think you will find that Ross made the right decision...

Fellas,

Do you think Chad Henne wants to come back here? If you were him would you? He wants out more than you guy's want him out. As for the rest of the FA that we have. Carey,Soliai,Langford Mitchell,Slaton and Allen
are all worth looking at for the right price.

Henne's offseasons likely hood's:

Backup w/potential to replace Kolb
Backup w/potential to replace Sanchez
Backup w/potential to replace Gabbert
Back up Luck
Back up Rodgers when Flynn leaves.

We know Ross WILL spend in FA....

Lets get a RT who is worth the price...and can still play @ a high level for @ leat 4 more years....

Bring in another WR to replace Hartline...and move Hartline to the slot....

I don't like the idea of signing a FS unless his name is Ed Reed....in my opinion...it just seems that they guys once PAID...they never play the same....maybe its the Diva in them...maybe its fear of injury...maybe i am way off base...but I would rather we grow one..then buy one...

henne to jets to push sanchez...i want peyton manning he is what the offseason is about for dolphins fans!

DC..i'm out...I will check back later...

Got to go to the gym....didn't make the morning workout...

slept on the floor with my 5 year old(camping out in his mind)....

woke up (or whatever youcall it when you never really fall asleep)...sore as heck....

bryan in Ohio,

Sporano benched Henne in Miami then spent a whole off season trying to find someone to replace him. I don't see Henne with the Jets.

And Brian Hartline can't play the slot. He is too tall with long strides. The good slot players are usually short in stature with quick moves not long striders.

Kris...The answer at FS might be Jimmy Wilson...I look at him play and he's more of a safety than a corner...But Tony loved to play guys at wrong positions...They should really give him a chance and see what he can do...Just like Rashad Jones should be a SS, not a FS....

We already have a WR that plays the slot...It's Devone Bess...Why are we talking about Hartline?

#1 Dolphin Fan in Montreal,

I have no idea. Ask Kris.

DC,

From your comments earlier, Kris has done a good job rebbuting your comments, so I won't rehash.

I will say there are a lot of inconistencies in your comments. For one, Ireland hasn't been running the team for 4 years. I hear this from people a lot. It's just not true. At most he's been running it for 2 years but likely for just the last year. So if you want to make comments like 'the talent Ireland has been supplying for 4 years', realize that's not an accurate statement.

Also, I'll say I was a fan of Sparano for most of the time he was here. However, as a HC you are judged by your record and his record over 4 years wasn't good enough. Over the last two years alone I could at least 4-5 games each year when the team could have and should have won. To me that says the talent is good enough to compete, the coach just isn't getting the most out of it and in some cases was making decision to cost the team games, such as being too conservative.

Lastly, as I said this morning, I know very little about this kid this morning but I wouldn't call it 'gimmicky' to go to the CFL. He's trying to get a competitive advantage over other teams and if it doesn't cost us a draft choice, I'm all for it. You made mention, 'do other teams go to the CFL to get players?'. Personally, I couldn't care less if they do or not, I just want the players to pan out. Couldn't care less what teams do or where the players come from.

As an example, the Blue Jays in baseball were one of the first teams to get players from the Dominican. Nobody else in baseball was doing it at the time and let them to find players like Damaso Garcia, Tony Fernandez and via rule 5 draft George Bell. You're probably saying 'who cares'.....all I'm saying is, I WANT Ireland to do things other teams don't do, if it helps us get to where we need to be, I'm all for it.

I see Henne with the Jets...Just sayin'. PS-What a story re: Columbo...He really STUNK up the joint with his pass protection...Could not believe he made any roster let alone a starter...Sprarano may be a classy guy but his talent evaluation sucked eggs.

Anbody think Mario Manningham might be a good player for this team? He might cost about $6-7 million but he's a pretty nice player. I think he's been under-utilized a bit in NYG, with Nicks and Cruz there.

Is this a guy we could add or too much of a luxury item for this team?

albert, I think Bess can put up some pretty good numbers in Philbin's West Coast Offense...He doesn't have blazing speed but he has the ability to make the first guy miss...He's not a home run guy, but he could be pretty productive in this offense imo...I think the Dolphins need another real playmaking WR to play with Marshall...I wanted D.Jackson but now it looks like the Eagles will tag him...Maybe Marques Colston...He always gets opened and that's not something you can coach...He's put up some pretty good numbers over the years...

Dolphin Fan in Montreal

Bess is a fine possesion receiver. He thrived with Chad Pennington and Henne. Not so much last year. I am not a fan of D. Jackson. You already have a weirdo in Marshall you dont need another. As for Colston he is a replica of Marshall. Big and slow. But I agree that Hartline is not a solid starter. We do need an upgrade. Hartline is a good #4.

A couple of names that might be interesting. Reggie Wayne (If Payton comes here, By the way I hope not. Arm appears to be gone) And Donald Driver. His contract is up in GB and with Philbin and possibly Flynn. Driver might be a short term solution.

albert, he doesn't have blazing speed but he's not slow...He averaged almost 15 YPC...And like I said, he does seem to always get open...You don't average 15 yards per catch in the NFL if you're slow...I just hope the Dolphins upgrade, we need more weapons...

Another thing about Colston...He's a heck of a blocker...Rated one of the best in the league...And to think he was a 7h round pick...What a steal...

I think Henne was the product of not much support from WRs, and no support from the OL. The man was injured as the result of very bad pass blocking. Henne might do rather well under a different offense.

Dolphin Fan in Montreal.

I told you that I agree an upgrade is needed. I don't believe Colston is the one I would target. And yes he had a 14.3 per catch avg but Marshall had a 15.0 per catch average and we know Marshall is NOT a deep threat. I would much rather have Steve Johnson from Buffalo. (If he would just grow up) For that mater I would take Reggie Wayne for two years.

Has anyone given much thought to upgrading the QB position?

Henne will end up in St Louis, Jeff Fisher said he likes Henne and he would be a good backup to Sam Bradford...he'll even get playing time as Bradford can't stay healthy

DD, lol. I knew you'd have something to say about Montana players.

But I'm not being critical of them here (not saying it's because they are MONTANA players there's something wrong with them).

I'm just trying to lay what Ireland's tendencies have been. I agree, Lex was a nice role player for us. Good in special teams. Good in protection. Good when given the chance. I've got nothing against him.

My only question is why does Ireland have these tendencies (go look at Montana, or the Cowboys, or the CFL)? Is this something all GMs do (look in these particular areas)? Or has Ireland targeted these specific areas for any reason (we all know he goes to the Cowboys because he came from them and probably knows their talent better than any other team).

My larger point is maybe these tendencies of Ireland's aren't going to put the best team together. Maybe they will, but so far, evidence shows they have not to date.

Clyde, yeah man...3 first round picks and Jake Long to the Rams for RG3...Under the assumption they would agree...Do you pull the trigger? Hell yeah you do!!!! Can you imagine the buzz in South Florida if RG3 would be here? Wow!!

Clyde,

No. No one here has ever talked about that. Why don't you give us your thoughts.

I'm already reading articles saying RG3 might go first overall...Wouldn't surprise me...Anyway, later everyone...

Dolphin fan in Montreal.

Up until now I thought you were smart. 3 first round picks and Jake Long? Why don't you throw in your wife and kids too.

Should of said "Would be there?" Not enough sleep these days...LOL! Later guys...

When I say 3 first round picks I include the one from this year, where we would trade picks with the Rams...This year's first, next year's, 2014's fisrt + Jake Long.

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