Miami Dolphins 

Dolphins expected to okay Williams's move to Argonauts

With Canadian Football League training camps about to open this weekend, it's looking more and more as if Ricky Williams will suit up this season with the Toronto Argonauts.

Sources say both the Argos and Williams anticipate the Miami Dolphins of the National Football League will permit the running back to spend the 2006 season in Canada. The NFL has suspended Williams for one season for violating the league's substance-abuse policy.

Assuming permission is granted in the next few days, the Argos would then meet with Williams and try to hammer out a contract. Williams would then join the Argos partway through training camp, although neither side has set a deadline for a deal to come about.

"The dialogue between the Argos and the Miami Dolphins is confidential," Argos president Keith Pelley said yesterday.

The Argos have been in hot pursuit of Williams for the past few weeks after adding him to their negotiation list when he was suspended by the NFL. Sources say both Williams and his agent, Leigh Steinberg, are bullish on the idea of his joining the Argos as a means of staying in shape for an anticipated return to the NFL in 2007. Williams, whose interests include yoga and Eastern religions, is also apparently excited about the prospect of playing football outside the United States in a highly multicultural community.

The Dolphins, specifically head coach Nick Saban, are considerably less excited about the idea of Williams heading north, concerned that the soon-to-be 29-year-old might suffer an injury in the CFL. Saban, however, has great respect for Williams, and both the Argos and Williams's representatives believe Miami will reluctantly grant permission within the next few days. Miami's lone sticking point is a guarantee that Williams will be their property in 2007 to finish the final two years of his contract with the Dolphins.

Sources say Steinberg and Pelley have had extensive conversations over the past month. Steinberg, one of the NFL's most prominent agents, has been impressed with everything he has learned about the Argos, their ownership and coaching staff, led by head coach Mike Clemons.

Besides the need to stay in shape, Williams also needs income. While the Argos aren't likely to pay him more than $200,000 this season, that's welcome for an athlete in poor financial shape after his abrupt retirement from the Dolphins before the 2004 season. An arbitrator later ruled that Williams owed the Dolphins $8.6-million (U.S.), a figure later reduced to $5.4-million (U.S.) by the club.

Marcus Vick Signs With Miami Dolphins

The Miami Dolphins signed rookie free agent quarterback Marcus Vick on Monday.
Vick, younger brother of Atlanta Falcons star Michael Vick, went undrafted this year after off the field trouble at Virginia Tech.

"I want to make it very clear that we will not condone any behavior issues in the future relative to Marcus Vick," said Dolphins Coach Nick Saban. "Marcus acknowledges that he has made some mistakes, all of which has resulted in severe consequences for him. They have helped him learn that he will need to make much better choices and decisions in the future or risk similar consequences that could jeopardize his career as a professional player."

Marcus Vick played two seasons at Virginia Tech (2003, 2005) and completed 207 of 346 passes for 2,868 yards with 19 touchdowns. Last season, he connected on 177 of 289 passes for 2,393 yards with 17 touchdowns while leading the Hokies to an 11-2 record.

Younger Vick Joins Dolphins

Miami signed Marcus Vick on Monday, but the former quarterback at Virginia Tech probably will not play that position if he makes the team.

The Dolphins signed Marcus Vick as a free agent Monday. Don't expect the former Virginia Tech quarterback and brother of Atlanta quarterback Michael Vick to play quarterback should he make the roster.

Vick possessed the most notable name among the four free agents -- Vick, linebacker Keith Newman, cornerback Michael Lehan and tight end Keith Heinrich -- signed by the Dolphins on Monday. Vick will join the team's ''organized training activity'' with other rookies today.

Like his brother, Marcus Vick played quarterback at Virginia Tech. Unlike his brother, the Dolphins likely won't see him as a quarterback. They didn't even work him out at quarterback during the final day of rookie camp, instead playing him at receiver.

The Dolphins already have three quarterbacks. But the talents and size (6-0, 216 pounds) of Vick are similar to those of Antwaan Randle El. Pittsburgh drafted the 5-10, 192-pound Indiana University quarterback, then deployed him as a wide receiver and returner because of his explosiveness in the open field.

Also, Randle El's passing ability allowed him to be used on trick plays and to perplex defenses by lining up as quarterback in the shotgun. After four productive years in Pittsburgh, Randle El signed with Washington this summer.

The main difference between the two is Randle El was a second-round draft pick and Vick is a free agent. The Dolphins have nothing invested in him, so it's reasonable to expect he won't make the team unless he can beat out someone at a position.

Vick's best opportunity to make the roster might be as a punt returner, where Wes Welker has defined ''dependable, but pedestrian'' over the past two seasons. Welker averaged 9.1 yards per return with a long of 47 last season.

A big reason Vick wasn't drafted was a stream of on- and off-the-field incidents while in college. He was suspended for the 2004 season and kicked off the team after the 2005 season. When Vick stomped on a calf of Louisville defensive end Elvis Dumervil during the Jan. 2 Gator Bowl, he might as well have been stomping on the rest of his college career. Soon after, he was charged with three counts of brandishing a firearm in Suffolk, Va.

''I want to make it very clear that we will not condone any behavior issues in the future relative to Marcus Vick,'' Dolphins coach Nick Saban said. ``Marcus acknowledges that he has made some mistakes, all of which have resulted in severe consequences for him. They have helped him learn that he will need to make much better choices and decisions in the future or risk similar consequences that could jeopardize his career as a professional.

''As an organization, we did an enormous amount of research, including consulting with professionals in detailed, in-depth analysis to feel comfortable that giving Marcus an opportunity as a free agent is a risk worth taking,'' Saban said. ``Marcus has made a commitment to this organization and our fans to represent the Miami Dolphins in a first-class manner.''

Dolphins cut Madison

The Miami Dolphins released Pro Bowl cornerback Sam Madison and three other players Wednesday to make room under the salary cap for the start of free agency.

Madison was due to make $3.42 million in base salary in 2006. Madison's release ends his nine-year career with the team. Madison was the first cornerback in the team's history to make the Pro Bowl and has 31 career interceptions, including two last season. He spent seven years opposite Patrick Surtain, who also went on to become a Pro Bowler and was traded to Kansas City last season.

Also cut backup were cornerback Reggie Howard, left tackle Damion McIntosh and strong safety Tebucky Jones. The cuts put the Dolphins under the $94.5 million salary cap, assuming there will be no extension of the league's collective bargaining agreement.

Miami Dolphins get new practice bubble

Stiles Construction Co. has begun construction of the Miami Dolphins indoor practice facility, on the west side of the team's existing training facility building at 7500 S.W. 30th St. in Davie, Fla. The 96,600-square-foot air-supported structure, scheduled to be completed in July, will be manufactured and installed by Air Structures American Technologies Inc.

Miami Dolphins- Frerotte's fate?

The official fate of quarterback Gus Frerotte with the Dolphins remained uncertain Sunday night.
The league delayed the start of the free-agent signing period by 72 hours to 12:01 a.m. Thursday so talks can continue.

Frerotte's short-term future with the Dolphins is tied to whether the cap will increase with a new labor pact. The Dolphins could retain Frerotte and try to renegotiate his contract if the cap grows to between $105 million and $110 million as expected with a CBA extension.

Frerotte, who was 9-6 as a Dolphins starter in 2005, is expected to draw interest if allowed to test the free-agent market.

  1 - 6 of 6 articles  

On This Site

  • About this site
  • Main Page
  • Most Recent Comments
  • Complete Article List
  • Sponsors

Search This Site

Syndicate this blog site

Powered by BlogEasy

Free Blog Hosting