Bored without football? The Miami Dolphins offseason is about to get interesting. We’ve all speculated and given our thoughts on which QB the Dolphins should acquire this offseason. Well, the first QB available to the Dolphins will become a free agent tomorrow. According to ESPN, Peyton Manning will be released by the Colts tomorrow at a press conference. Manning will be joined by Colts owner, Jim Irsay. Manning being released should come as a surprise to no one…we were all just waiting for when it would actually happen.
Immediately after the news of Manning’s pending release became known, Twitter blew up with every ‘expert’ offering a suggestion as to where Manning would end up. Some say the Cardinals….some say the Redskins…..I even heard the Seahawks and 49ers as possible destinations. Jason LaCanfora of the NFL Network thinks Peyton will end up on the Dolphins….as do Adam Schefter and Chris Mortensen. In reality, no one knows. For the first time in Peyton’s career, he will be a free agent and will be able to choose the team he plays for next. His suitors will not only have to offer him a sizeable contract, but will also have to prove to him that they are his best option to get his 2nd Super Bowl ring.
Remember last year Dolphins fans? Remember those of us that wanted an upgrade at QB so bad that we were hoping the Dolphins would work out a deal for Kyle Orton? ’We Want Orton’ chants and all? Kyle Orton was the best QB upgrade available (or so we thought) to the Dolphins during the 2011 offseason. After all, he had thrown 41 TDs and 21 INTs over the previous 2 years. We thought he could come in and help the Dolphins reach the playoffs. Little did we know that Orton would lose his job to Tebowmania and that Matt Moore would do an good enough job to help the Dolphins win 6 of their last 9. Not bringing in Orton was a good call by Jeff Ireland (yes, I said it). AND, signing Matt Moore was a solid move.
What a difference an offseason makes, huh? We’re now talking about the Dolphins chasing Peyton Manning, Matt Flynn, RG3, or Ryan Tannehill. At least this offseason, the Dolphins have more options. It’s assumed that Peyton Manning will be cut before Friday by the Colts, making him a free agent, free to sign with any team he wants. By the way, as of this writing, 57% of Dolphins fans think that Peyton Manning is a good idea for the Dolphins, while 43% disagree and want no part of another stop gap QB. If you haven’t voted in our poll yet, you can do so here.
I realize that the Miami Dolphins supposed interest in Peyton Manning has caused a split in the Dolphins fan base. There is a segment of fans that think getting Peyton Manning is the right move the for the Dolphins. While another segment believes the Dolphins should look for a young QB to develop for the future. The comment sections of previous posts about Manning tell me that the there are a lot of you out there that would love for Peyton to come to Miami, while others would hate the idea. Believe me, I realize that this topic is very polarizing!
On Friday, video was ‘leaked’ that showed Peyton Manning throwing at Duke University. Most would agree that the ball boy at Duke did not edit the video and that it was leaked from the Manning camp on purpose. Keep in mind that this is a PR battle between Manning and Colts owner, Jim Irsay. Both sides are trying to get the upper hand. The truth is, as good as Peyton looks, he’s still not the Peyton Manning of old…..yet. For those of you who haven’t seen the brief video, here it is:
Have patience Dolphins fans, the time for talk and speculation is about to come to an end. For almost 2 months we’ve heard ‘expert’ after ‘expert’ give their opinion on which quarterback the Dolphins will chase this offseason. First, when Joe Philbin was named Dolphins head coach, the immediate reaction was that the Dolphins would target Matt Flynn, the Green Bay backup. Then, the Manning to Miami movement started and fans started to warm up to the thought of Peyton Manning wearing aqua and orange. Most recently, Dolphins fans have fallen in love with Robert Griffin III. These are certainly not the only 3 QB options for the Dolphins, but they are the 3 that are most likely.
Each of the 3 quarterbacks mentioned above come at a cost and with a risk. Matt Flynn could cost his next team a sizeable contract and possibly draft pick compensation (2nd rounder?) if the Packers apply the Franchise Tag to him. Flynn has started only 2 NFL games and has looked good, but the sample size is small and he is inexperienced. Peyton Manning will only cost money, but he’s not 100% healthy and may never be again. Reports indicate that he’s further along in his recovery than some have let on, but if the Dolphins want to sign him, they’ll have to do it before they know for sure that he’ll be the Peyton of old. RG3 would cost the Dolphins as much as 2 first round picks, a second round pick, and possibly more. RG3 has amazing talents, but is unproven and inexperienced at the NFL level.
Earlier this morning, the Miami Dolphins anxiously awaited the result of their coin flip with the Panthers to determine the #8 overall pick in the 2012 NFL Draft. The flip was originally scheduled to take place at 7am…then the flip time was rescheduled to 730am EST…Fans became nervous, the anticipation built. Would the Dolphins luck begin to change with one flip of a coin? Or would they lose the coin toss and the 2012 would be lost before it began…..
Yes, I’m mocking the idea that the #8 or #9 pick is THAT big of a deal. In truth though, it could mean the difference between the Dolphins getting the player they want or the Panthers stealing him 1 spot before. It could also mean the difference in compensation for the Dolphins. The Dolphins now sit at #8 and according to the Draft Value Chart, that pick is worth 1400 ‘points’. The #9 pick is worth 1350 points. That 50 point difference is the equivalent of a 4th round draft pick. That value only comes into play if the Dolphins are looking to trade up or trade back from the #8 position.
The Miami Dolphins have been linked to Matt Flynn since Joe Philbin was named the new Dolphins head coach. Flynn was linked to the Dolphins because Philbin is familiar with him, having spent the last 4 seasons with Flynn in Green Bay. Flynn is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent on March 13th, meaning he is free to sign with any team that he chooses. Well, that was the plan…..until Wednesday…..
Wednesday evening, the Green Bay Packers re-signed their Pro Bowl tight end, Jermichael Finley to a 2 year contract worth $15 mil. Great, but how does that effect the Dolphins pursuit of Matt Flynn? Well, Finley and the Packers were thought to be too far apart on terms of a deal. If they were unable to agree on a deal, many experts believed that Finley would be given the Franchise Tag by the Packers. But, since Finley is now signed, the Packers could use their Franchise Tag on Matt Flynn.
Give Miami Dolphins fans credit….we’re passionate fans! Remember the banner that flew above Sun Life Stadium before the season finale against the Jets? The one that called for Stephen Ross to fire Jeff Ireland? You remember! The latest public display comes in the form of a billboard on 595. The website ManningToMiami sponsored the below billboard to show how much they want Peyton Manning to come to Dolphins:
From what we can gather, more Dolphins fans would prefer that the Dolphins sign Matt Flynn and forego the injury risk that Peyton Manning would bring. Especially considering Peyton hasn’t been throwing the ball more than 25 yards, it’s hard to argue. But still, there is a portion of the fan base that is holding out hope that the Dolphins will sign Peyton Manning and he will regain his Hall of Fame form. I think every Dolphins fan out there would sign for Peyton Manning today if he was going to be 100% healthy.
As we’ve said before, if you are going to get Peyton Manning, you need an insurance policy beyond Matt Moore. We think that the Dolphins should select a young QB in the draft (say, the 2nd round, like Tannehill if he lasts that long) to develop behind Manning. Best Case Scenario, Manning will play another 3 years, maybe 4 if you’re lucky. Then, you have a QB that is ready to step in and has learned from a Hall of Fame QB.
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Although February is a quite time for Miami Dolphins related news, it doesn’t mean that the Dolphins front office is sitting around doing nothing. In reality, February- April are crucial months when it comes to building your team. This is the time of year that Jeff Ireland and his associates really earn their money (or so we hope!). The Dolphins must clear out as much cap room as possible by March 13th at 4pm, when the NFL League Year official begins (so does free agency!)
With a new coaching staff, the Dolphins will use February to assess what they have on the roster….and what they need to get better. February is a number crunching time, when the Dolphins will look at their current salary cap situation for 2012 and develop a plan to move forward with. The Dolphins currently have about $116 mil on the books for 2012. The NFL salary cap is expected to be between $120-$123 mil. Considering the Dolphins need to sign a rookie class of players AND upgrade at certain positions, they have quite a bit of work to do. The rookies will account for $4-5 mil of the Dolphins cap for 2012. Again, that doesn’t leave much left to spend.
So where do the Dolphins think they’ll get the money to sign a Matt Flynn or Peyton Manning? The Dolphins, like other NFL teams will look to cut players and/or restructure current player contract before March 13th. When a team restructures a player’s contract, they are doing so to reduce the ‘cap hit’ for the current year. Reggie Bush, for example, has 1 year left on his deal and is set to count roughly $5 mil against the Dolphins cap. If the Dolphins restructure his deal and sign him to an extension, they could reduce his cap hit for 2012. Jake Long, Karlos Dansby, and Yeramiah Bell are also candidates. Bell, in fact, will probably need to restructure if he wants to stay in Miami. Otherwise, he’ll probably be cut outright. These are all the conversations that are going on in Davie right now. Jeff Ireland is looking at the numbers and putting puzzle pieces together to see which players can give them more flexibility in free agency.
Wow… (cracks knuckles)…it’s been a few days since we talked Miami Dolphins football, huh? I apologize for the absence, life caught up with me a bit this last week. My busy schedule, combined with very little Dolphins news combined for a slow week at PhinNation.com. We’re back and wanted to give you our thoughts on the recent happenings that concern the Dolphins:
Earlier this week, the Dolphins signed former Canadian Football League running back, Jerome Messam. Terms of the deal are unknown at this point, however we do know that a number of teams had an interest in signing Messam. Messam is said to be a bruising running back at 6’3″, 245 lbs. Last year in the CFL he ran for 1,057 yards on 195 carries and won the league’s Most Outstanding Player Award. Jeff Ireland hopes that Messam can be the diamond in the rough that Cameron Wake was. More likely, Messam will compete at camp and compete with guys like Lex Hilliard to make the final 53 man roster.
We’ve spend the last few weeks telling you about the Miami Dolphins and their QB options this offseason. I think we’ve just about covered everything! Peyton Manning’s health, RG3′s trade cost, and Matt Flynn’s experience are all question marks for the Dolphins. Today, we thought we’d share a laugh with you all. We came across this blog on Twitter (thanks to @rizzmiggizz). Dave Rappoccio created a new logo for every NFL team……with Peyton Manning’s head built in. Here’s what his new Dolphins logo looks like:
Picture by: Dave Rappoccio
Thought we would share for your enjoyment. As we’ve said before, no one really knows how healthy Peyton is going to be when he is released by the Colts….Equally as important, no one has any idea which team Peyton will end up on when he’s released. Report after report suggest different things about his health. Bill Polian says he’s throwing the ball well, but is capped at 25 yards….Others suggest that he can’t throw to his left and doesn’t have enough zip on the ball. It’s going to continue until the Dolphins and other NFL teams can look at Manning and watch him throw, in person. Everything else you hear is pure conjecture and speculation.
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