Are Dolphins done in free agency?http://www.phinfever.com/newsite/index. ... 1&Itemid=1
Written by Tony Simmons
Sunday, 06 June 2010
As we head toward summer camps and the upcoming NFL season, the Miami Dolphins have done a nice job of adding young talent to there roster via free agency. In WR Brandon Marshall and ILB Karlos Dansby, the Dolphins added elite level players still in there prime as Marshall is 26 years old and Dansby is 28 years old. Also added to the team is Richie Incognito, a massive 26 year old OG, the nasty, physical type of player that Tony Sparano loves.
The Dolphins ended the 2009 season as the 6th youngest team in the NFL and they will go into the season with Jason Taylor, Akin Ayodele and Joey Porter, all three players in the 30's no longer on the roster. The Dolphis only have 4 players with double digits years of experince on the roster, Will Allen and Ricky Williams going into there 10th year, Chad Pennigton going into his 11th year and Jason Ferguson, going into his 14th year in the NFL. You can expect a large majority of the 8 man draft class from 2010 to make the team, either the 53 man roster or the practice squad.
When the regime took this team over, there goal was to rebuild not only the talent base, but turn this team from one of the oldest back in 2007 to one of the youngest. They have done that mostly thru the draft, but they have done this also thru moves made in free agency. Yes, the regime has missed on players like Gibril Wilson, Ernest Wilford to name a few, but they have hit on their fair share as well as Randy Starks, Joe Berger, Jason Ferguson and Chad Pennington have been big assets to the rebuilding of the Dolphins.
A couple of names to keep an eye on are O.J Atogwe, the free safety formally of the St. Louis Rams and Adalius Thomas, formerly of the New England Patriots. ESPN is reporting in there "NFL Rumor" section that Miami interest in Atogwe is luke warm and that Jeff Ireland is happy with the talent at free safety. That may be so, but if Atogwe contract expectations drop, say in the 4-5 million per year range, I believe the Dolphins will be very interested. Atogwe, a 5 year veteran has 19 career interceptions and 14 forced fumbles, is a playmaker at free safety with ball skills and a willing tackler. He also has been injured the last few years and those numbers have dropped, thus the concerns on his health.
Thomas fell out of favor in New England after a confrontation with Bill Belichick over showing up 8 minutes late to practice in a major snowstorm in Foxboro. His sack numbers dropped while with the Patriots, but that was due in part to the fact that because Thomas was so versatile and had the ability to drop in coverage even with being 6'3, 270 lbs, the Patriots used him in a variety of ways, not only as a pass rusher. That being said, activity level and interest in Thomas has been slow, helping drop his dollar figure as well. Adalius had some of his very best years with the Baltimore Ravens under Mike Nolan and Nolan would like to bring Thomas into the fold. Ireland refers to older players, and Thomas is 32 years old, as progress stoppers, but Miami is learning a new defensive system and having a veteran like Thomas around, a player familar with Nolan system would do wonders for the young OLB's Miami has in the fold right now. Plus, I believe if you put Thomas back in Mike Nolan's system, he still can produce.
Right now I would say the Dolphins will not make those moves, but Jeff Ireland also told us there was no interest in Brandon Marshall either. Keep an eye on these two players if the money falls in the range that Miami is willing to spend. Both would be solid additions at the right price.