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Tampering begins: Top 3 in areas of need for Dolphins

Let the tampering begin! At noon, NFL teams were actually within their rights to start negotiating with players on other teams. Yes, that's actually been going on for weeks, but you know the game (wink, wink).

The Dolphins need offensive line help. They need defensive tackle help. They may want middle linebacker help so they can kick Dannell Ellerbe outside. Safety? Sure. Running back? Maybe.

Below are fake GM Salguero's top three players in those areas of need as free agency negotiations begin this afternoon (legally):

Left tackle

1. Eugene Monroe, Baltimore: Young. Elite pass-blocker. Average run blocker. Think Richmond Webb without the big behind. He's quiet and a not a locker room issue, which should be a positive for the Dolphins. Will be expensive.

1A. Branden Albert, Kansas City: Also young (29) but not as young as Monroe. Has elite skill set but doesn't always get elite results. Also excellent in pass pro; not as good in running game but slightly better than Monroe. Will be equally expensive as Monroe. Loves and lives in South Florida. Albert has a history of back issues.

1B. Jared Veldheer, Oakland: Missed the first 12 games of 2013 due to a biceps injury, which raises the injury red flag. Better athlete than the other two, better run blocker than the other two. But feeling around the league is increasingly that Oakland is allowing him to shop simply to match the offer. Most teams don't like to work for the sake of having a player return to his current team.

Overall position analysis: The Dolphins had better sign one of the top guys or something is wrong. As to playing coy with the money, that won't work. The Dolphins have a huge need and everyone knows it. This is going to be an expensive proposition.

Right tackle

1. Zach Strief, New Orleans: The Saints are unloading talent to make cap room but want badly to re-sign Strief. That should tell you something that he's more valuable to them than, say, Lance Moore or Darren Sproles.

2. Austin Howard, New York Jets: Let's make the Jets weaker! Well, that's not a good enough reason to entertain signing a player but it can't hurt. Howard is not elite and won't require elite money to sign. But he's better than say, Jonathan Martin. He played better last year than Tyson Clabo. He's solid. Not great. Solid. You cannot have a Pro Bowl player at every spot.

3. No one. It's a baaaad free agent class at right tackle, folks.

Overall position analysis: This screams draft. But maybe GM Dennis Hickey has a trick up his sleeve. Or he's desperate. If all else fails there's always the stand-by Eric Winston, Tyson Clabo, Jeremy Trueblood gang at the last minute.

Guard

1. Zane Beadles, Denver: Excellent footwork and excels in pass pro. Great balance which is reason he's not often on the ground. His production is hard to argue with although he played much better in 2012 than in his 2013 contract year.

1A. Chad Rinehart: Very good run blocker. Hard worker. Versatile in that he can play either guard spot. Smart player. Plays with leverage and doesn't make a lot of mistakes. Not the most gifted athlete but he's a football player.

2. Geoff Schwartz: Want to improve the run game? This is the guy. Was a revelation down the stretch in 2013 and played better than previous starter to the point he beat him out. But ... was it the view of things to come or simply a stretch he was playing over his head?

2B: Jon Asamoah: The player who got beat out (see above). He's been solid for three seasons but dipped a bit in 2013. Interesting issue: Do you go with guy who played better at end of '13? Or do you go with guy who has more consistency over longer period of time? Asamoah is the latter.

Darkhorse: Davin Joseph: The Bucs released him this afternoon. He has always had a high ceiling but never really got there. Problem is he sometimes didn't even try to get there. He is also coming off knee surgery and he's 30. But his Bucs connections to Dennis Hickey cannot be overlooked.

Surprise candidate: The Dolphins like St. Louis Rams T Rodger Saffold as a possibility at either guard or tackle, acccording to The Herald's Adam Beasley. Saffold is solid but not very durable. He has not played 16 games since 2010. He has struggled with knee and shoulder issues.

Overall position analysis: The Dolphins can really use a veteran with good interior presence because playing with two rookie guards is a recipe for disaster. If all else fails, there's always Richie Incognito and John Jerry. Not.

Defensive tackle

1. Jason Hatcher, Dallas: Want to upgrade, Mr. Hickey? Here you go. A true 4-3 defensive tackle. A pocket-pusher. He'll get up field and disrupt. He'll also disrupt the salary cap because he will be very expensive.

2. Linval Joseph: Want a cheaper Paul Soliai? Here you go. A run-stopping player with limited pass-rush ability (less than Soliai). He's also not going to catch too many guys from behind. He was good in his contract year.

3. Earl Mitchell, Texans: He's a one-gap guy but he has excellent quickness and athletic ability that translate to other uses. He can also push the pocket so he's not just a run-down player.

Overall position analysis: The days of Paul Soliai and Randy Starks seem over. Soliai is perhaps the best run-down player on the market. But he's a run-down player in a passing league. Starks is the best pure DT on the market in my opinion but he's 30 years old. And that one-finger salute that he extended to Joe Philbin and his coaches? That has not been forgotten.

Safety

1. Jairus Byrd, Buffalo: Want to break the bank? Here you go. But he also offers the best defensive playmaker on the market at any position. Man averages nearly one turnover every two games. 

2. Donte Whitner, S.F.: If the Dolphins were of the mind to get him, they could let Reshad Jones become the roaming free safety he probably should be. Whitner is a strong safety enforcer. He hits hard, he causes offensive players to think twice about going across the middle, he's a tackling machine. He is older and he probably wants to stay with a winning team.

3. Taylor Mays, Cincinnati: Only reason he's on here is his ties to Kevin Coyle. He's a north-south, stiff dude. But he's fast and he hits like thunder.

Overall position analysis: The Dolphins would do well to draft here. They need to unleash Jones. And paying too much at this position would tilt too much money, added to the 2013 Jones extension, to the back end of the defense. 

Middle linebacker

1. Jon Beason, New York Giants: Nothing will happen with him until Tuesday because he represents himself and teams cannot talk to players before Tuesday. But he's a savvy veteran. He has a great motor. And he loves Miami.

2. Karlos Dansby, Arizona: I think we know this isn't going to happen. He doesn't, um, love Joe Philbin. But ... playmaker? Check. Solid inside presence? Check. Hard worker? Check. Plays hurt? Check. Of course, all his abilities didn't translate to the Dolphins. Coaching the reason? Check.

3. Daryl Smith, Baltimore: Want a true team leader? Want a tackle machine who won't be collecting his tackles eight yards downfield? Want an accomplished A-gap blitzer? Want a solid player who isn't going to break the bank because he's getting up there in age? This is your guy. 

3b: Brandon Spikes, New England: This won't happen because Spikes has a mind of his own and Philbin doesn't like that. He's also really only a run-down player and very, very limited in passing situations. But want to help solve Miami's declining run defense? This would help.

Overall position analysis: It is just sad to me that a year after spending so much on Dannell Ellerbe in free agency, the case could be made that he really isn't suited to be a middle linebacker ... or that the Dolphins didn't coach him well enough to man the position at a high level.

Comments

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RUSSELL WILSON SPLITTING THE WHITE OAK

http://www.therichest.com/expensive-lifestyle/the-hottest-nfl-wives-of-the-year/10/

Taylor mays is the key here. Must play him like seattles kam chancellor and were in the playoffs

Mando Man, Fake GM, is probably better than IRELAND all day, Hickey ? We will see this week.

We need the LT, but Ozzie is not going to let Monroe get away after spending picks on him last year. Albert is good enough...dummy Ireland blew that one last year.

Albert,Zack Martin in draft, Pouncey at C, Beadles and Jets Howard as RT would be good enough, unless we can get McKinney to play RT ? L. Delmas good enough for me at S, lot cheaper than Byrd, fo-sho. RB ? draft C. Hyde or Wilder Jr. Keep Soliai and draft another DT for depth. Dion Jordan is a roaming OLB...let him loose !!

Offense ? Sign Sproles, WR Gibson coming back, maybe sign Keller on the cheap to go with Clay, we be okay.

JAGS HELD IN HIGHER REGARD THAN PHINS

Red Bryant signing announced today, how many super bowl winners want to come here?

CHANGO!,

You make the waffles and I'll hold your ears while you do.

Dolphins pursueing Saffold, called Valdheer, want BrandenAlbert. Barry Jackson has a blog up.

MANDO IS ALREADY INSULTING THE FA OL (SEE LEFT SIDEBAR)

No wonder all the top free agents want to come here and not to winning teams with OL needs like:
Den
Bal
KC
Car

I don't see RB on the list....

It is rare for a player like Byrd to hit free agency at his young age. I would like for us to go after him as he is a better fit for what Kevin Coyle wants as a safety who can cover. You pair him w jones this year, draft a safety and cut jones next year, won't be much of a hit on the cap at that point, who was a huge dissapointment this year and doesn't fit the scheme. Byrd is a playmaker.

as long as we have joe philbin as our head coach we will be mediocre at best. this guy has not much going for him other than the fact that he conned mr.ross very well. which does not seen to be a very difficult task - jeff irland - tony sopranno,our offensive line coach,johnathan martin ,ect.ect.ect.Big Bald joe shows no passion or energy on the sidelines like the harbough bros. pete caroll ect.ect. and will be a money extracting loser always.GREAT JOB MR.ROSS

JAGS HELD IN HIGHER REGARD THAN PHINS


Posted by: ExposingTheFraud | March 08, 2014 at 03:59 PM

Everyone is held in higher regard than the hapless Dolphins.

as long as we have joe philbin as our head coach we will be mediocre at best.

Posted by: james rice | March 08, 2014 at 04:23 PM


Mediocre would be great compared to the last 7 years.

How bout getting Michael Vick? Wallace would be much more effective.

Good players who sign with the Dolphins don't seem to fit, or don't play with speed. My moneys on coaching. Dolphins had a good defense until this yr. Run defense sucked? Try getting a new DC. Try getting a new NC, one who understands the NFL and will let players,,,you know,,play? Philbin doesnt like any player who doesnt kiss his ring.

Defense has been going "DOWNHILL" since MIKE NOLAN left. Also since we took the "CLAM" out of the "CHOWDER" (CROWDER)of our run defense.

The same Channing Crowder many "dumb dolfans" loved to hate.

Strange thing in Miami, when finally getting rid of players "dolfans love to hate", 3-4yrs later they still haven't been "ADEQUATELY" replaced.

Dolfans, be careful in the future about our players you hate. They are usually better than the players they've been replaced.

Karlos Dansby was second team all Pro last year and had monster numbers for the cardinals. Funny how great players are average for the fins and then leave and become superstars.

The same can be said for Brandon Marshall. Marshall was an absolute stud for the Broncos. Then comes to the fins and is average. Now goes to Chicago and is one of the best WRs in the league again. That is on the coaching. Ellerby was the best player on the Ravens defense that won the superbowl and now is mediocre. Ireland brought in good players, it is the Philbin that failed.

Look for Clemmons, Carroll, and Jerry to become All Pro players when they leave the Dolphins.

Orlando

We bring those players here and either play them "out of position" or "not play them to their strengths".

It's more a matter of "SCHEME" or how we use them, than COACHING. They're already great players, so, they do not need to be "coached up". Just piss poor scheming.

SIGN DARREN SPROLES

GAME CHANGING PASS CATCHER!!!!!!!!!!!!

They have to get Mike Wallace a QB. Its useless having a great WR without a QB.

Looks like Wilfork might be cut by the Pats. A very good D-tackle option might be available. Being a Cane the Dolphins will probably be one of his top destinations if he hits the market.

Clemn. Carroll, Jerry, all pro?

That's one helluva stretch of the imagination!

Clemmons just doesn't have great ball anticipation or ball skill. His tackling is slightly above average on his best day. Jerry's lazy, that can not be coached out. Its lack of desire to be great.

Carroll, maybe? He slowly seems to get better. Of the bunch you named, only Carroll, seems to show potential that maybe, just maybe.....

Letting Carroll go will be a mistake... Also unless they have a plan to replace Clemons he should be resigned as well.

I like Sproles, but to play him on 3rd and 4 or more, the oline has to do a helluva better job pass protecting. Or D's will blitz on 3rd downs forcing Sproles to become a "pass protector". He's too small, don't want him matched up on a blitzing backer.

Defense wins every time.

Its 12 years too late for Wilfork. Should've drafted him out of college. Now he's washed up.

beerphin

I agree. Carroll is the "best backup cb" on the market. If nothing else, he could play slot, and start in a pinch when a cb goes down.

Backup corners with starting experience are "priceless". Starting last year may have done him very well coming into this season. The peanut vendors here want to replace him with their shrewn hulls.

Are we still going to run philbins offense or will it be scrapped

Why are Saturdays breeding day for idiots on this blog?

A new year is about to start in the nfl I think we will be primed to go or go go a little snap count joke hahahahhahahhahah a no seriously tannehill has a break out year with his new line 35 td 10 int 4500 yards and a pro bowl oh yea deep into the playoffs

It is always a bad idea to sign Players from Teams with great GMs/HCs. Most of the time those Players don't turn out well.

YG Marco Sam69 is on the crack hard today. Best day for it to ramble I suppose. The floor is yours, JA.

We all deserve a winning team so I proclaim the time is now

O

YG Marco Sam69 is on the crack hard today. Best day for it to ramble I suppose. The floor is yours, JA.

Posted by: deity | March 08, 2014 at 05:45 PM

What a tiny mind you have. Go find a life and get to work on that ASAP. You send so much of your sad life on this team you really have only one choice and that is your end.

We all deserve a winning team so I proclaim the time is now

Posted by: Marc from nj | March 08, 2014 at 05:46 PM

Ross/Hickey/Philbin couldnt win if ya handed em a win on a silver platter. Three incompetent stooges in NFL terms.

YG Marco Sam69 is on the crack hard today. Best day for it to ramble I suppose. The floor is yours, JA.

Posted by: deity | March 08, 2014 at 05:45 PM

You love men so much you watch them in pads hurting each other g.a.y boy. Go suckle your Tannehill and enjoy the seed hitting your empty soul.

Posted by: Dolphins Stink | March 08, 2014 at 05:49 PM

there we go America, keep learning, you may grow a culture.

Ross and Philbin dont deserve chit. They are a circus act. "I know nothing"....Joe Philbin.

If you sad people dont already know, the world hates you and your purile dumb sports. However you have the best comedians, women and film makers.

Go!!

Go....Go!!

Rams have Jake Matthews in their sights. Roger Saffold might be available.

Philbin has definitely got some changing to do if he is going to survive another year.

The strict discipline banter for one doesn't work in the NFL unless you have some pedigree. Just ask Greg Schiano.

Gotta get these guys to buy in. Maybe Lazor can generate some excitement on offense.

Grimes coming back as a leader on defense is a good sign but we need a few more of him.

See it will be:
#1- Johnny Manziel
#2- Jake Matthews
#3- Jadeveon Clowney
#4- Sammy Watkins
Once you know the top 4 order, it becomes elementary to know what comes next.

If you hate American go screw yourself and ya know what get the fark out you piece of crap

Oscar to bad we pick 19th but it's ok we already have playmakers we need some big uglys

What would hitler do if he ran the dolphins

Strict disciplinarians without some flexibility don't work anymore in the NFL, probably never have either.

I think Johnny football slide down to 10 or maybe lower he has character issues

Teddy bridgewater is a pure passer and a polished playmaker he will be the number 1 pick

I just have to think that having Jairus Byrd along with Grimes in the backfield would just be a turnover machine. Worth making happen if we can.

Alfred,

If I were Philbin I would go for broke with my job on the line.

Whatever elite players I could get to sign and squeeze under the cap. Byrd is a no brainer aside from his price tag.

I'm not sure which one of the available DT's would be the best bet in lieu of Soliai or Starks. Hatcher or Joseph??

If I recall correctly, Marino had "character" issues, a party boy, had a decreased sense of smell but was a very happy guy. Only Shula took a chance on him(a flexible Coach). The lesson here, Shula was a great Coach.

add oscar to the dumb bloggers list, maybe 5th place.

So much for Byrd. According to Adam Beasley the Fins are still working on a deal with Louis Delmas.

Danny snorted mountains of blow he really enjoyed himself maybe that's why he has no Super Bowls

Oscar is one of the smartest guys around very intelligent

Polian ranks Clemons higher than Byrd for available safties.

Oscar is a (Fraud).

Our front office knows exactly what they have to do . The plan is set , now to execute it is the challenge ,bring these big bodies home

Dolphin wish list in FA:

LT (Monroe), RT/G (Saffold), Safety (Byrd), ILB (Beason), BIG RB (Blount), DT (Mitchell)

...make cap room by saying goodbye to Starks, Solai, Clemmons, Patterson, Matt Moore, Jerry, Clabo,

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