MIAMI (CBS4) – The 2011 offseason for the Miami Dolphins promises to be one that may not be matched in recent memory. The Fins need help in several key positions, most notable among them the quarterback position.
The Fins bet the franchise on Chad Henne and outside of a couple of good games, he’s been a major disappointment. The challenge for the Fins this offseason is to determine whether Henne needs another year or if it’s time to cut bait and run.
There aren’t a lot of good free agent quarterbacks hitting the market and the only one that could be trade bait is Kevin Kolb of the Philadelphia Eagles. But, the Eagles will keep him for insurance against a Michael Vick injury and it would take a deal too sweet for the Dolphins liking to get him. But Kolb and Henne are essentially the same quarterbacks so a move for him is not likely.
The Fins can also turn towards the 2011 NFL Draft to look for a quarterback if Henne’s not the answer. The first round has a few intriguing quarterbacks including: Blaine Gabbert, Ryan Mallett, Cam Newton, Jake Locker, and possibly Colin Kaepernick.
Taking a first-round quarterback is always a risk, but sooner or later the Dolphins have to take a gamble on a first-round franchise quarterback or the team will never move up in the AFC East.
Quarterback isn’t the only offensive position needing a boost. The Fins will likely need to replace Ricky Williams and possibly Ronnie Brown, if the latter doesn’t agree to a pay cut. The draft will produce several good running backs in all of the rounds, so drafting a Mark Ingram in the first-round isn’t a lock.
Still, don’t expect to see any activity on the free agency front until a new collective bargaining agreement is signed and the likelihood of that happening anytime soon aren’t good. Both sides, the billionaire owners and the millionaire players, have dug in demanding more money for themselves and as of now, it’s a game of chicken and who will flinch first.
Until the new CBA is completed, free agents will simply have to wait to see if a team wants their services. Plus, until the new rules of a CBA are done, it’s unknown exactly which players will be free agents and which ones will be restricted or franchise tagged, assuming those still apply to a new CBA.
The 2011 NFL Draft will go on regardless of the CBA, but Fins fans shouldn’t get their hopes up of a big free agency splash or big name trade until the CBA deal is done.