Will Allen is on injured reserve. And he's not very happy about it.
Allen, out on injured reserve for the second consecutive season, has told multiple sources how unhappy and displeased he is with the fact the Dolphins decided to effectively shut him down for the 2010 season and not hold a roster spot open for him until he could return to full health.
That timetable for Allen returning to full health was initially reported as the first game of the season but the truth is Allen isn't ready now. Multiple sources are saying he would more likely be ready to contribute in the Miami secondary by the start of October or the Oct. 4 game against New England.
The Dolphins decided against holding a roster spot open for Allen, privately telling The Herald's Jeff Darlington there were too many uncertainties with that timetable. Publicly, the club has shown no desire to explain its thinking on placing Allen on injured reserve.
"I'm not going to get into the specific reasons why we did any of these things," Coach Tony Sparano said this week when asked the reason for Allen being shelved. "But it's something that had to be done right now."
Allen disagrees, according to those close to him. In the days following his Aug. 11 arthroscopic surgery, Allen felt like he had turned the corner on the injury that forced him to miss all of the 2009 season. Yes, he had passed his physical and was practicing at the start of training camp, but he didn't feel quite right.
He felt right following the latest surgery and all he wanted, I am told, was a couple of weeks to prove that on the field.
He will not get that chance.
So why is this even a topic?
Well, the Dolphins have had issues in the secondary, and particularly at cornerback, this preseason. Sean Smith struggled. Jason Allen, often dismissed as only a special teams player after being selected in the 2006 first round, showed more promise than in the past.
And although Jason Allen wasn't stellar, himself giving up scoring plays in the preseason, he displaced Smith as the starter for the regular-season opener at Buffalo on Sunday. Sparano confirmed that Monday.
"The decision hasn't been made all the way," Allen said Monday. "But I'm preparing like I'm the starter. That's how I always prepare and this week is no different."
There is nothing here that suggests benching Smith for Allen is the wrong decision. That is a coaching decision and Sparano and his staff know better than anyone, certainly better than me, which players they have confidence in starting.
But the question that lingers is why the rush to discard Will Allen? Sure, there is uncertainty about his return to health. But tell me what is guaranteed in today's NFL, anyway?
Why not hold the roster spot open for a week or two just in case the Allen prognosis turns from a question mark to an exclamation point? And if that question mark lingers, then the Dolphins could put Allen in IR and move on.
The Dolphins, silent on the matter, might argue that roster spots are precious and they cannot hold any spot open for Allen. Really?
So the waiver wire additions of Joe Reitz, Robert Rose, Jermey Parnell and Clifton Geathers were all that important? Do these unproven, untested guys come with no uncertainty?
Are they all more likely to contribute to the Dolphins this season than Will Allen would once he got fully healthy?
And, yes, I know it is uncertain Allen would reach 100 percent health regardless of what sources are saying. But one must admit it is uncertain the young untested guys taking up the roster spots will ever help the Dolphins in any way, either.
We'll see how it works out.
[Broadcast note: Tune in to Armando and the Amigo Tuesday morning 6-10 a.m., as our guests will include former Bills WR Steve Tasker, who is broadcasting Sunday's game, Mike Florio of profootballtalk.com, Dolphins Pro Bowl safety Yeremiah Bell, former Mets GM Steve Phillips, and Jacksonville State head coach Jack Crowe, fresh off his team's upset of Ole' Miss. If you're not in South Florida, listen live here.]