Three years ago the Miami Dolphins held the number 1 overall pick in the draft. Instead of choosing a quarterback (Matt Ryan), they chose to select Jake Long at #1 overall, and gamble on Chad Henne in the 2nd round. Ryan has blossomed as a quarterback with the Falcons, while Henne has not yet lived up to the franchise QB that the Dolphins had hoped he’d be. Earlier this offseason, Bill Parcels, the grand facilitator of the draft, admitted a mistake in not taking Ryan. No use crying over spilled milk, what’s done is done.
Photo by Chris J. Nelson
Henne’s legacy with the Dolphins will likely depend on his performance in 2011, both in training camp and in the regular season. It’s the number 1 player taken in that draft that sometimes goes unnoticed….and it’s hard to overlook someone as gigantic as Jake Long! All Jake has done in his 3 seasons with the Dolphins is go to the Pro Bowl 3 straight years. With the Lockout in full effect, every website out there is making up lists about the best players in the NFL. In almost every list we’ve seen, Jake Long is ranked #1 or #2 at the Left Tackle position.
Dolfans, within the next 3-4 weeks we could FINALLY be talking again about Miami Dolphins football. We can stop with the endless lists of top 10 players, plays, helmets, mascots, laundry detergent, etc. We can finally get back to talking about the Miami Dolphins and the 2011 football season. For the 3rd straight week, key members of the NFL and NFLPA are meeting, trying to find middle ground in the CBA battle. We don’t want to get you too excited, but there are certainly signs of hope.
First, the fact that they’re meeting is a big positive. Remember in April when they wouldn’t even sit down to negotiate? Second, it’s been reported that DeMaurice Smith and Roger Goodell shared a “jovial”, one on one dinner last week….Not earth-shattering, but encouraging. The two sides are motivated to get a deal done for 2 primary reasons. First, if the Lockout continues and the preseason is missed, the NFL could be missing out on about $1 billion. Second, there are 2 court rulings that could tip the leverage scale greatly in either sides direction….Both sides know this and might want to make a deal rather than risk losing whatever leverage they have.
For the last 3 months, Chad Henne has been leading Miami Dolphins player-only practices. Henne is said to be installing the new Dolphins offense brought to the team by Brian Daboll. If you remember, Daboll and Henne had some not-so-secret meetings, back in January/February before the Lockout was imposed by the NFL Owners. The meetings lead to fines by the NFL, but no further sanctions. If a minor financial hand slapping was all that it took for the Dolphins to gain an advantage they wouldn’t have otherwise had, it was well worth it. The Dolphins core group of offensive players have been practicing 3 days a week for the last 3 months. During this time, Henne has been teaching his teammates the intricacies of Daboll’s offense.
It’s great to see Henne taking a leadership role, as the Sun Sentinel talks about here. Henne isn’t leading the practices alone, as Jake Long is helping to lead the Dolphins player-only workouts. But it is encouraging to see Henne taking the type of leadership role that he has been criticized for since becoming the Dolphins starter. We can only hope that his leadership in the players-only practices can carry over onto gameday. Henne’s leadership this offseason is going a bit unnoticed. However, it is vital that he brings his leadership to the Dolphins, once the Lockout is over.
This morning Plaxico Burress was released from prison and immediately fans of the Miami Dolphins began to wonder if he would be a good fit with the Dolphins. Adding to the fuel was Adam Schefter (and others) mentioning that Miami would be a potential landing spot for the previously imprisoned wide receiver.
Burress was released from prison earlier today after serving his 20 month sentence for shooting himself in the leg, in public. Well, technically the prison sentence was for having the gun in the club in the first place….not really for shooting himself. He hasn’t caught a pass since midway through the 2008 season. Additionally, he’s said to have lost weight while in prison, so he’s nowhere near game shape. However, Burress can thank the NFL Lockout for making his transition back into football, a little bit easier. You see, no teams have been able to address their needs this offseason, other than through the draft. So there will be buyers in the Plaxico isle. It also helps Plax that the Lockout is still ongoing, giving him time to re-set his life and begin training for the NFL 2011 season.
A lot has been made this offseason about the Miami Dolphins search for a quarterback to come in and compete with Chad Henne. We’ve heard rumors that Carson Palmer would be the top choice….We’ve told you that our top choice would be to go after Kyle Orton. Some even think that Matt Moore would be a good option (not us!). However, a report that surfaced this morning indicated that the Dolphins are indeed planning on pursuing Vince Young, once the Lockout is over.
In our QB series a couple of months ago, we explained why Vince Young would be the best choice for the Dolphins this offseason. Young has had his issues off the field, but his production when he has played has been very good. Young is 30-17 as an NFL starter and last year, in 10 games amassed a QB rating of 98.6. If you’re wondering if that would be an upgrade over Chad Henne of the Dolphins, wonder no more. Young’s QB rating is 23 points higher than Henne’s (75.4).
We’ll take a break from the fast breaking (not really) Miami Dolphins news to give you an update on the NFL Lockout. We’re going to keep this simple, because the we’ve had enough legal jargon for one offseason. We’re football fans. We want to talk about offseason trades, free agent signings, zone blitz schemes, and cheerleaders. If you the legal jargon version of today’s proceedings, you can check here.
Earlier today, the former NFLPA’s lawyers took on the NFL’s lawyers in the 8th Circuit Court. Lawyers from both sides made 30 minute arguments to the 3 judge panel, hoping to persuade the judges to give them the leverage needed to negotiate the deal that they want. Essentially, the NFL is saying that the earlier decision by a lower court to lift the injunction is invalid…They say that the lower court ruled on a labor matter, which they aren’t supposed to do….Thus, the Lockout can continue for up to 1 year; which would make us cry like a 4 year old who doesn’t get the toy he/she wants from the toy store.
The NFLPA’s lawyers argued that the lower court’s ruling is valid because their case against the NFL is valid. The NFLPA decertified (meaning they are no longer a union) and has filed anti-trust lawsuits against the NFL. Whoa, got a little too much into the legal mumbo jumbo for a second….sorry! The NFLPA is basically arguing that the lower court’s ruling should stand, ending the lockout.
There hasn’t been too much news coming from the Miami Dolphins recently. In fact, this Lockout has pretty much made this the most boring NFL offseason in history. What the Lockout HAS provided is countless lists and rankings from NFL analysts, who have nothing better to do (including us!)….Heck, ESPN even did the “Power Rankings” of NFL team helmets (I think the Dolphins ranked 10th by the way). Scintillating reading my friends!
Well yesterday, ESPN decided to have KC Joyner, one of their 8,492 NFL analysts compare Mark Sanchez of the Jets and Chad Henne of the Miami Dolphins. We are not ESPN insiders, so we can’t see the full article…really don’t care to anyway. The link above takes you to the summary and preview of the story. Essentially, Joyner is saying that the numbers of Henne and Sanchez are eerily similar and that Henne is every bit as good as Sanchez. While we hate the Jets, Sanchez, and everything involving Rex Ryan, that conclusion may be a bit flawed. We wrote our thoughts about the Sanchez/Henne comparison back in January.
With the Lockout in place, choking the life out of the NFL offseason, there isn’t a lot of Miami Dolphins news to share with you….So we took Memorial Day weekend off from posting! Don’t fear though, we have been in discussions with one of the Dolphins defensive starters, about doing an interview with PhinNation.com!
Before we get to the Dolphins news, we would like to thank all of our brave men and women, that fight, or have fought for the freedoms we enjoy. These are the true heroes! Second, we would like to congratulate the Miami Heat on advancing to the NBA Finals!! Best of luck to D-Wade, LeBron and crew against the Mavs.
We’ve been catching up on all things Miami Dolphins, but sadly there isn’t a lot of news to talk about. Below are a few stories that caught our interest, so we wanted to share them with you:
Running Back Rankings
Senior NFL Analyst, Pat Kirwan took some time to compile his list, ranking running backs across the NFL. The Dolphins own, Ronnie Brown was ranked between 31-35th best, with the notation saying that Brown would be ideal for a team looking for a 10 carry RB. We see that 2 potential free agents are on Kirwan’s list as well, DeAngelo Williams and Ahmad Bradshaw. They are both slotted in the 11-15 group. Kirwan notes that Bradshaw is an explosive back who carried more of the load in 2010. He then says that Williams has been slowed by injuries, but has been solid in his last 2, non-injured years.
Over the course of the last month we’ve had great discussions about who the Miami Dolphins should bring in to compete with Chad Henne for the starting QB role. We’ve told you that our preferences would be #1 Kyle Orton and #2 Vince Young. We gave you a number of other quarterbacks that could be options for the Miami Dolphins. We did NOT tell you about Marc Bulger. Why? Because he’s no longer the QB that he once was and he would not be an upgrade over Chad Henne as the Dolphins’ starter.
Photo by GMO66
It’s been rumored that the Dolphins might have an interest in Bulger, since he’s about to become a free agent. Today, Armando Salguero posted on his blog that the Ravens think highly of Bulger and that he could be one of the last remaining options for the Dolphins. He may be an option for the Dolphins, but he’s not the type of upgrade this team needs to take the next step and save Sparano/Ireland’s jobs. In the last 3 seasons he played (2007-2009) he threw for 27 TDs and 34 INTs total. The highest his QB was, in any of those years, was 71.4. Is THAT the type of upgrade the Dolphins need? No. If the Dolphins do not want to give up a draft pick for Orton (or if the Broncos won’t trade him), then Vince Young would be our next best choice. Young has better numbers, is younger, and has proven he’s a winner in the NFL.
When Miami Dolphins Owner, Stephen Ross, purchased the Dolphins a few years ago, he knew that a drawn out CBA mess could be on the horizon. Ross made comments yesterday and essentially says that the labor issues aren’t really labor issues at all. The Dolphins’ Owner says that when ballplayers make an average salary of approx. $1.87 mil, you’re not really talking about normal labor issues. Interestingly, the opposite of that particular point has been argued by the Owners. The Owners/NFL have argued that this CBA Mess is the result OF labor issues, therefore the courts should not intervene. Ross, apparently thinks otherwise.
Ross also pledged to repay the lost salary payments that Dolphins’ employees have undertaken because of the Lockout. Last month, the Dolphins cut employees salaries by 10-20% depending on the actual amount of their annual salary. Ross’s pledge to repay the lost wages are welcomed words for the employees to hear, but the NFL itself can’t be thrilled. You see, the NFL is claiming that the Lockout is hurting them, just as much as the players. They’ve said that cutting employees salaries is necessary because of the economic climate of the Lockout. Ross’ pledge to repay the Dolphins’ employees salaries, makes that argument ring hallow. In the end, we think Ross is doing the right thing by repaying the lost salaries to Dolphins employees….but they shouldn’t have really been cut in the first place..should they?
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