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A look at Sean Smith's cut at free agency

I lke Sean Smith. He's intelligent. He's well-spoken when he wants to be. He seems to get it when he wants to and that was apparent when he lost weight and worked his backside off in training camp prior to the 2012 season -- understanding his contract year loomed. And he's problematic for the NFL's big-bodied wide receivers that like to win by simply being bigger than the cornerbacks they face.

So I like Sean Smith on the Dolphins.

But he is not elite.

He is not franchise player material as one local publication reported in January.

He's, well, something between terrible and good. And that makes him inconsistent.

Smith started this season a house on fire. He locked down Larry Fitzgerald. He did great work against A.J. Green. And then something changed.

Suddenly he was giving up first downs like it was part of his job description. And yes, that was him in the picture and beaten on a handful of TDs caught by opposing wide receivers. According to ProFootballFocus.com, Smith yielded more combined first downs and touchdowns than any other NFL cornerback. That number is a whopping 46.

Something didn't seem to fit. Seems he's not comfortable against smaller, quicker receivers so he plays off. And at 6-3 and 218 pounds, he doesn't have the quickness and explosion to close on receivers on out patterns and comebacks for first downs.

That's not all.

The elephant in the room is the guy should be an interception machine. But isn't.

He plays well enough often enough that balls come to him. Unfortunately, he drops most of them. He dropped one against Indianapolis last year that could've been the difference between a win and loss. Yes, he had two picks on the season, but his drops have far outnumbered his catches over his Dolphins career.

And he was a wide receiver in college at one point!

I didn't know what to make of Smith after the season so I asked two former Dolphins receivers about him. I asked them to compare Smith to former Miami cornerback Vontae Davis. Both players said the same thing.

"I'd much rather go against Sean than Vontae," one said. "Vontae is a pain in the [butt]. He gets his hands on you, he holds, he grabs, he gets away with stuff that nobody sees. Sean is just easier. He's fast as hell. But he guesses a lot and a lot of time he guesses wrong."

And so this is the resume Sean Smith will take to free agency in March.

I believe he's going to free agency because his agent David Canter is confident Smith will be a hot commodity in free agency. I don't doubt that's true. First, Canter has made his reputation by knowing the market. Second, Smith looks like a beast if you put on the Arizona tape.

But I was there for all 16 games this year. And all the games in 2011. And the ones in 2010 once Smith recovered from being benched in favor of, wait for, Jason Allen.

And I don't think it would be wise for the Dolphins to spend a lot of money on Smith. I say that that knowing that Canter will be asking for a lot of money for Smith.

As I have reported, that camp believes the market for Smith is similar to the Brandon Carr contract with Dallas or the Jason McCourty contract with Tennessee. Carr got $50 million over five years and McCourty got $43 million over five years from Tennessee.

So Smith is looking for anywhere between $8-$10 million.

The Dolphins don't see that. And much as I like Smith and respect Canter, I don't see it either. The performance simply does not rise to that level. And frankly, I'm not sure it rises to half that level, either.

Then there's the other question that must linger in the mind of the Dolphins brass: What is going to happen once Sean Smith gets paid? He worked hard to get ready for the contract year. And then he faded anyway.

Is he going to work harder once he gets guaranteed money?

I don't know that he isn't. I also am not sure he will.

The cornerback market has potential bargains. Yes, Dominque Rodgers-Cromartie will want a big payday that I don't think he's worth. But guys such as Cary Williams and Brent Grimes and Michael Adams will be out there. They all come with questions marks. That makes them no better than Smith.

But they'll probably be cheaper than Smith, at least initially.

Then there's always the draft. A couple of years ago the Dolphins fished a little-known Utah cornerback out of the draft's second round and he started immediately. He wasn't great but he wasn't bad. And he was cheap. That made him a good value.

His name is Sean Smith.

But for $8-$10 million? No thanks.

 

Comments

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If we don't resign Bush we better draft a rb or sign one in free agency likr oscar suggests.

Oscar,

I draft Hopkins and Bailey on my gm mock board. Sign Greg Jennings in fa too.

The mock draft on the nfl site has Damonster Moore from A&M going 13th to the Bucs. He's one of the few guys I covet in the first round. First off I don't see that happening but if it did I would jump at that guy over Vaccaro.

Dolfan Rick,

On my mock gm draftboard I draft rb Stephon Jefferson 4th rd. As I said before, some scouts say he could be this year's version of Alfred Morris.

I am here now.

Posted by: dadsmithwest | February 10, 2013 at 06:46 PM

Damonster? LOL.....

Damontre Moore..... LOL...

Don't google them, watch them perform on you tube. Make up your own mind. Besides, it's Fun.

...YG I will check him out. Gillisee has shot up the board..He has been my favorite back. If it is the second round. I would back off a bit. I think that round will be reciever-tight end, or perhaps a double up at wr. But who knows with Ireland. Franklin is a stud. UCLA..He does everything well. I'm a bit suprised he isn't rated higher. I wonder if it is just the position isn't seen as the priority on offense anymore...Teams know they can get good backs later in the draft.

No se, I haven't had any post deleted from here in a long time, y yo jod- con cojo-es here.

YG4E,

You need to email your list to Jeffy. Chances are he hasn't heard of half of them. lol

That's funny YG4...I know the guys name. That's what they've called him not me. That guy is a monster. I'd love to see him opposite of Cam.

YG is it your rule to insult every blogger you don't agree with? Just wondering

Does anyone know if Jimmie Gilhooly from Oberlin is draft eligible?

He'd be quite a steal in the mid-to-late rounds.

Supposedly some REAL physical DEs in this Draft. I only have seen Dion play, but even he is strong as hell.

..YG. Have you heard anything about Flanders? Do you know if he is staying in school? Talking Rb's

Some of these "analysts" and mocks I must say are crazy and dumb. Another is Lacy. He looked like a man playing against boys in the BCS championship. He made Teo look awful. I can't believe he is ranked on ESPN as the 69th player best player in the draft.

I would have no problem taking lacy in the 2nd round

JJ was a real gifted Personnel Man. He could pick HOFers, since HS.

Sign Wallace and hartline draft steadman baily in third round then sign Dustin Keller and where off to the races

Well, dad, you have to consider that that ALA OL was blowing the ND D line away.

Wow there are so many ways to go this offseason it's just crazy

DD,

I believe he's entering the draft. I mean really, if youre playing at Sam Houston St the best you probably improve your draft stock is 6th-7th rd.

Timmy Flanders could have potential to be an Alfred Morris type. But as a walk on.

Oscar what do you think our play will be this offseason

I would draft honey badger at some point maybe 6th round

It is crazy..the Phins have many options in FA and the draft. And without clear cut choices at the top of the draft who knows how it's going to turn out.

Teo was avoiding contact with the guy. And was the poster boy for why arm tackling is bad technique.

I hope jeffy gets lots of rest before draft day.......he's gonna need it

I would, sign our essential FAs,sign other FAs to replace those gone, and draft well, very well.

So hartline Starks Clemons stay and see ya to the rest oh Fasano is a keeper too

I hope jeffy gets fired before draft day.......we're gonna need it

We are lucky that this Draft is deep in our positions of need. There might be a run on DEs, and that would leave some playmaking talent available at WR and S. Also, that other G from ALA and the other T from TA&M might be there.

I know this is going to throw salt into the wounds of some BUT I'm not scared. You have to give credit to Ireland for giving the team this kind of opportunity to retool this team in FA and the draft. Simply put there are enough solid players on the team to let a portion of the FA's walk and still upgrade both sides of the ball.

In comparison the Jets are 23 mil over the cap and have to cut players and figure out what to do with Sancheese.

Kyle long is a name to watch maybe 2 nd or 3rd round he is the son of howie

Ireland will still blow it!

Dad I support Ireland as well he did a super job with our cap and draft picks now is the time to execute!!!!!!!!!!

I read somebody say the other Day that position of need is not as imprtant as BPA. That might be the case for SF, Ravens, etc. But We, have needs, still.

Jeff is a real smart guy

dadsmith,

Ireland is all we've got at this point. Gotta pull for him. I'm not all about starting over again.

Tannehill in his 2nd year and some decent wideouts could make a huge difference.

LOVE IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN FOOTBALL//////////


NOW WE CAN DRIVE IN MA,AFTER THE NOW STORM....

It should be an easy Draft for Ireland to deliver the Goods.

ALoco is as much in Mass. as I am in NJ.

This team was in big trouble before tuna came in with Ireland remember 1-15 , it's now time to reload and retool with our new coaches

oscar,

I've always proposed taking the BPA in a position of need. It should be pretty easy this year. Beyond taking a QB, RB, or center in the first rd we have a lot of needs.

WE GOT 31 INCHES OF SNOW,THANK GOD I HAVE DUEL STAGE SNOW BLOWER ....

Sparano was the dog not Ireland

We only got 7 inches we got lucky

ALoco, how are ya? How is your igloo?

Ireland was the dog not Sparano.

LOL,,

THE SNOW WAS FLUFFY AND DIDN'T SIT ON ROOFS FOR THAT REASON AND THE WIND HAD HELPED ,PLUS THE WEATHER DID WARM UP TODAY AND MELETED FEW INCHES AND MORE TO MELT NEXT WEEK....

THE STREET ARE ALL CLEARED DUE TO THE BAN ON DRIVING FOR 2 DAYS WITH 500 DOLLARS FINE AND ONE YEAR IN PRISON ,,,

Not even at that, Rick. Last year I learned in this Blog that an Athlete fitting into the Team's Philosophy is more important than any BPA. I believe it now.

This whole thing with the picks and cap space didn't happen by accident. Do I agree with all his moves? Nope but he's been around this game a long time and he has inside information many of us are not privy to. He's made a lot of mistakes but he took a huge step forward last year.

Ireland got a lot of the blame that should have been directed only at Sparano who was THE biggest problem. Nice guy bad HC. He wasn't even close to ready for that jump Tuna.

Ah! Moralism stuff.Puff!

He never will be either, dad.

OSCAR,

DO YOU KIDS AND A WIFE ??

The one thing we cam all count on is Irescum to make the wrong decisions!

go finssssssss

and i still say go get harvin. guy is a huge play maker. offer a 3rd and 4th and see if they bite. id go our 2nd and 3rd if needed. and with vikings finally going public today with trying to trade him ireland better be on the phone. guy is a stud

I would take BPA over need if the folowing is the case:

A. That player is hugely superior to the player of need available.

B. The BPA player hugely addresses another position, regardless of need.

Those are the two most important reasons to take pure BPA over need.

That's how we ended up with Dan Marino the offseason after David Woodley quarterbacked us to the super bowl. Marino was just so much better than any need we had at the time and hugely upgraded our qb position(David Woodley).

interesting also seeing pats say good bye to welker,lloyd, and woodhead. i for one am glad

dustybottom,

Why not just bring Ted Ginn back. Percy Harvin is a kick returner who happens to play wr too.

A 3rd and 4th rd pick is too much to pay for an often injured kick returner who happens to play wr. Harvin was often injure at UF. So what we see now isnt very unusual.

i don't believe fOR A SECOND,THE PATS WILL PART WITH WELKER ,,....

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