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Dolphins Should be Under Cap by Wednesday


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Posted on Fri, Feb. 27, 2004



SHORT-LIVED: The Dolphins on Thursday cut quarterback Brian Griese after only one season in Miami.





Griese, Perry, Ruddy let go




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The Dolphins didn't need one of those 10-10 calling plans to save a bunch of money Thursday.


With one long-distance courtesy call to agent Ralph Cindrich, they cleared $10.32 million against the salary cap by releasing quarterback Brian Griese, guard Todd Perry and center Tim Ruddy.


The team also spent a long day with agent Drew Rosenhaus, restructuring or working out new contracts for five of his clients and driving Miami's cap savings to more than $18 million. The team reached new terms or deals with linebacker Zach Thomas, defensive tackle Tim Bowens and kicker Olindo Mare.


Miami also re-signed safety Arturo Freeman and defensive tackle Dario Romero. The Freeman deal all but assures the team will cut either Brock Marion or Sammy Knight, last season's starting safeties.


''All these deals really worked to the benefit of the teams and the players,'' Rosenhaus said. ``The most important thing for all of them was to stay with the Dolphins.''


Thomas' restructuring was most significant, guaranteeing him nearly $6.7 million in bonuses and salary next season.


The moves left Miami in good position to be under the salary cap by Wednesday, the official start of the NFL year.




Equally important, Jay Fiedler was taking his time thinking through the possibility of staying with the team, raising hopes that Miami's most experienced passer might have been convinced to stay by coach Dave Wannstedt.


Fiedler flew to New York on Thursday to take part in a football clinic run by his family. He spoke briefly with several friends, all of whom came away believing Fiedler, who has been given permission to speak with other teams, might set aside his frustrations.


''He has a lot of stuff in front of him,'' one friend said. ``He's not really happy with the situation, but the problem is that you really don't know who to trust.


``You can go to another team and it could be bad there.''


Keeping Fiedler, who met with Wannstedt on Wednesday, became a greater need when the team cut Griese after one season in Miami.


After the Dolphins finalize a trade with the Philadelphia Eagles for A.J. Feeley next Wednesday, Fiedler will have almost eight times the number of starts -- 53 -- as the rest of the quarterbacks on the roster. Feeley, Clint Stoerner and Sage Rosenfels have a combined seven starts.


While Feeley is expected to get every opportunity to start, whether he is the answer is anyone's guess.




Griese was not asked to take a pay cut. But the Dolphins told Cindrich they would leave open the possibility of re-signing Griese or either Ruddy or Perry later.


''They said that they still may re-sign them later, but we'll see,'' Cindrich said.


The Dolphins were approximately $13 million over the cap entering the day, although that figure didn't include the contracts for Feeley, Freeman or Romero.


Cutting Griese, whose contract included a roster bonus of $5.935 million that was due March 3, provided the biggest savings. Factoring in his base salary of $535,000, the Dolphins saved $6.47 million by letting him go. The team saved $2.7 million on Ruddy and $1.15 million on Perry.


The releases of Ruddy and Perry, both starters, also are clear indications the team will completely rebuild its interior offensive line. Left guard Jamie Nails is not expected to be re-signed, though Miami hopes to bring back right tackle Todd Wade.


Bowens received a new four-year contract that includes a base salary of $760,000 this season, a signing bonus of $1.24 million and a roster bonus of $250,000. Mare received a $2 million signing bonus, reduced his base salary to $660,000 this season, reduced the base in each of the next two seasons and extended the deal for three years.


Some good news as we got under the cap by about 3 million. Good thing they didnt over pay for Bowens and it looks like Knight or Marion will be gone with the signing of Freeman according to the Herald.


Also still not out of the possibility that Fielder may be back.




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I dont think Marion will be back.? I think there going with the cheaper alternative with Freeman and I hear they are expected to draft a Safety in the Draft.



*Cough* sean taylor *cough* :shifty lol I wish but he aint dropping that low. yeh....I also doubt that miami trades up that high....I wish they would though. :mischief2

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they released brock marion today


i don't understand why they don't just drop madison already- are they trying to trade him for TO?

wtf?? Your kidding me right trade him for T.O??


They havent released him yet because they plan to restructure his contract, and hes still better than many cornerbacks out there but at the moment he is way overpaid especially the way he has played the last couple of seasons. Hopefully they can come to an agreement and we dont have to release.

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Madison has been great the past few seasons on the field, just not statistically. You guys must not realize what the Dolphins defensive strategy is, but I dont't want to spend all day explaining it either, but Madison plays it to perfection, even if it means giving up the long ball.


He'll take a pay cut and we'll keep him.

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