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Friday, May 05, 2006

Free agents in the house

The Dolphins announced the signings of nine free agents a few moments ago. Remember these are undrafted guys who you probably won't be hearing much about after the first few weeks of camp.

But remember that some of these guys actually turn into treasures -- such as Adawale Ogunleye, who wasn't drafted out of Indiana because of his knee injury.

Anyway, here are the players' names and their backgrounds. Let me know who you think is the diamond in this rough and why.

LB-TRENT BRAY – Was a four-year letterman at Oregon State who started 34 of the 49 games in which he played during his career . . . Opened the final 34 contests of his collegiate career . . . Recorded 337 tackles, 29 stops for loss, 11 sacks, three interceptions, three fumble recoveries and five forced fumbles in those four seasons . . . Manned the middle linebacker spot for his final two seasons, when he surpassed the 100-tackle plateau both times with 122 as a junior and 116 as a senior, as both figures represented team-highs . . . Was a first-team All-Pac-10 Conference choice as a senior when he added 3.5 sacks, an interception, a fumble recovery and a forced fumble . . . Participated in the East-West Shrine Game following the season . . . Was a second-team all-conference pick as a junior when he also amassed three sacks, an interception and two forced fumbles . . . Redshirted as a freshman in 2001 . . . Majored in sociology with a minor in psychology . . . Attended Pullman (Wash.) High School where he played inside linebacker and tight end . . . Was a three-time team MVP . . . Also lettered in basketball and baseball in his prep career and was an all-league performer in both sports . . . Father, Craig, was Oregon State’s defensive coordinator from 2000-02 and now is the secondary coach at the University of Minnesota . . . Mother, Kaprice, played volleyball at Western Michigan and later went on to coach at Washington State . . . Born September 28, 1982 in Flagstaff, Ariz.

DT-STEVE FIFITA – Played in 47 games during his four-year career at Utah (2002-05), including 37 starts . . . Opened all 12 games each of his final three seasons . . . Totaled 136 tackles, 32.5 stops for loss and 13.5 sacks in his career . . . Was a first-team All-Mountain West Conference selection each of his final two years . . . Recorded 44 tackles, 14 stops for loss and a career-best six sacks as a senior . . . Played in the East-West Shrine Game following the season . . . Posted 45 tackles, nine stops for loss and 4.5 sacks as a junior . . . Also returned an interception six yards for a score against UNLV in his junior campaign . . . Was named Defensive MVP of the Fiesta Bowl following his junior season when he accounted for five tackles, two stops for loss and a sack in 35-7 win over Pittsburgh . . . Redshirted as a true freshman in 2001 . . . Majored in sociology . . . Attended Fountain Valley (Calif.) High School . . . Born May 16, 1982 in Huntington Beach, Calif.

QB-JUSTIN HOLLAND – Was a four-year letterman at Colorado State (2002-05) who completed 426 of 681 passes for 5,668 yards with 36 touchdowns and 32 interceptions . . . Started the first six games of his junior year before sustaining a fractured left ankle against San Diego State, ending his season . . . Returned in 2005 to open all 12 contests and complete 235 of 369 passes for 3,185 yards with 23 touchdowns and 15 interceptions . . . Threw for a career-high 419 yards and four touchdowns on 20 of 37 passing in a 39-31 win over Wyoming . . . Redshirted in 2001 . . . Majored in liberal arts . . . Attended Bear Creek High School in Lakewood, Colo., where he broke the state prep records for passing yards (10,567) and touchdowns (108) . . . School reached the state finals his freshman and senior seasons . . . Was a Parade All-American and the Gatorade Player of the Year as a senior . . . Was a first-team all-state selection as a sophomore and senior and a second-team pick as a junior . . . Served as team captain as a junior and senior . . . Was a member of the National Honor Society in high school . . . Full name is Justin Lee Holland, born April 16, 1983 in Denver, Colo.

DE-BEN ISHOLA – Played in 33 games, including 11 starts in his three-year career at Indiana (2003-05) . . . Amassed 43 tackles, 9.5 stops for loss and five sacks . . . Opened all 11 contests as a senior when he tallied 27 tackles, 6.5 stops for loss, a pair of sacks and a fumble recovery . . . Also blocked a kick . . . Is a native of Berlin, Germany where he played for the Berlin Adler American Football Club in 2002 . . . As a child, spent time living in Nigeria, the birthplace of his father . . . Born June 8, 1980 in Berlin.

WR-ERIC KIMBLE –In 46 games during his four-year career (2002-05) at Eastern Washington, caught 253 passes for 4,140 yards 46 touchdowns . . . Also rushed for 339 yards and five TDs on 65 carries, returned 74 punts for a 13.4-yard average and three touchdowns and fielded 28 kickoff for a 16.6-yard average . . . Holds virtually every school career and single-season receiving record . . . Totaled 170 receptions for 2,872 yards and 31 touchdowns over his final two years . . . Was a second-team Division I-AA All-America pick and a first-team All-Big Sky Conference selection his senior year when he caught 87 passes for 1,419 yards and 12 touchdowns . . . Surpassed the 100-yard receiving mark seven times on the season, and had best game against Sacramento State when he caught 10 passes for 189 yards and a pair of scores . . . As a junior had 83 catches for 1,453 yards and 19 touchdowns, and brought back 26 punts for a 17.7-yard average and two scores . . . Was a second team I-AA All-America selection as a receiver and a first-team all-conference pick as both a receiver and return specialist . . . Totaled 100 or more receiving yards on seven occasions . . . Had 10 catches for 196 yards and three TDs in regular season finale against Montana State and 11 receptions for 195 yards and three scores two weeks later in a I-AA First-Round Playoff game against Southern Illinois . . . Returned a punt 76 yards for a TD against Central Washington and another 73 yards for a score against Weber State . . . Was a second-team all-conference pick as a wide receiver his freshman and sophomore seasons . . . As a freshman, brought back a punt 80 yards for a TD against Portland State . . . Also that year was named to the Big Sky Conference All-Academic team . . . Redshirted as a true freshman in 2001 . . . Majored in general management . . . Attended Franklin Pierce High School in Tacoma, Wash . . . As a running back, rushed for 3,750 yards and totaled 5,429 total all-purpose yards in his four-year prep career . . . Also lettered in basketball and track . . . Was born in Korea, where he lived for six years before family moved to the United States . . . Father was stationed in the U.S. Army in Korea and his mother is from Korea . . . Born June 8, 1983 in Seoul, South Korea.

LB-SAM McGREW – Played middle linebacker during his four-year career at Florida State (2002-05) . . . Appeared in 52 games during that time and registered 125 tackles, five sacks, three forced fumbles, a fumble recovery and an interception . . . Posted a career-best 54 tackles and 2.5 sacks as a senior . . . Had the best game of his career in Orange Bowl against Penn State when he tallied 11 tackles and 1.5 sacks . . . Majored in social science . . . Attended Wakulla High School in Crawfordville, Fla . . . Cousin, Reggie McGrew, played at the University of Florida and was with the San Francisco 49ers from 1999-2001 and Atlanta Falcons in 2002 . . . Born July 28, 1984 in Crawfordville, Fla.

C-CHRIS McNEIL –Played in 37 games, including 26 starts during his four-year career at Mississippi State (2002-05) . . . Opened all 11 games at center each of his final two seasons . . . Saw some action at guard as a redshirt freshman in 2002 when he started three of the four games in which he appeared . . . Majored in physical education . . . Prepped at Petal (Miss.) High School . . . Played in the Mississippi/Alabama All-Star Game following his senior season . . . Started all four years in high school and was a three-time all-district performer . . . Full name is Christopher David McNeil, born February 18, 1983 in Meridian, Miss.

P-THOMAS OLMSTED – Was a four-year letterman at Troy University (2002-05) . . . Compiled a career average of 41.5 on 288 punts with 89 inside the 20 and 26 touchbacks . . . Of his 288 career punts, 55 went 50 yards or longer . . . Was an honorable mention All-Sun Belt Conference pick as a senior when he compiled a 40.4-yard average on 62 punts with 22 inside the 20, three touchbacks and a long of 59 . . . Participated in the Senior Bowl . . . Was a second-team All-Sun Belt Conference choice as a junior when he put together a 43.1-yard average on 76 punts, 24 of which went 50 yards or longer . . . Also handled placekicking and kickoff duties at various points of his collegiate career . . . Connected on 17 of 29 field goals with a long of 43, which came against Southern Utah in his freshman season, when he was 11 of 15 on field goals . . . Missed on a 45-yard try as a junior, his only attempt that year . . . Did not have any attempts as a senior . . . Majored in social science education . . . Attended Columbia High School in Lake City, Fla., where he was a second-team all-state pick as a punter and placekicker each of his final two years . . . Also played quarterback as a senior when the school posted a record of 9-3 and advanced to the Class 4A state quarterfinals . . . Also lettered in baseball and soccer, where he earned all-state accolades as a goalkeeper his final three years . . . Born December 28, 1983 in Lake City, Fla.

RB-GERALD RIGGS, JR. – Was a four-year letterman (2002-05) at Tennessee who played in 37 games, including eight starts . . . Totaled 1,893 yards rushing and 10 touchdowns on 383 attempts (4.9 avg.), while also catching 20 passes for 123 yards . . . Had his most productive season as a junior when he started three of the 13 games in which he appeared and rushed for a team-high 1,107 yards and six TDs on 193 carries, a 5.7-yard average per attempt . . . Surpassed the 100-yard rushing mark six times, including three of the last four games . . . Ran for a career-high 182 yards and two touchdowns on just 11 attempts against Auburn . . . Rushed for 530 yards and three scores on 127 carries in six games as a senior before missing the final five contests with an ankle injury . . . Majored in sociology . . . Attended Red Bank High School in Chattanooga, Tenn., where he helped lead the school to the Class 5A state title as a junior . . . Set school career marks with 6,046 yards rushing, 724 attempts and 90 touchdowns . . . Also amassed 225 career tackles . . . As a senior, established school single-season standards by rushing for 2,437 yards and 39 TDs . . . Was the recipient of the 2001 Bobby Dodd National Back of the Year Award by the Atlanta Touchdown Club . . . Also lettered in track where he competed in the 100-meter dash and turned in a personal-best time of 10.6 . . . Son of Gerald Riggs, who played running back for ten years in the NFL with Atlanta (1982-88) and Washington (1989-91) . . . Full name is Gerald Antonio Riggs, Jr., born September 28, 1983 in Atlanta, Ga.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks alot Armondo...real investigative work here. The Dolphins only published this very list on their own website.

How about actually working a little to find out who else is attending camp this weekend (tryout players)?

1:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Armando, I appreciate this. Not all of us are assholes like the guy who just posted.

1:37 PM  
Blogger DwinkinAle said...

Thanks Armando. Yeah disregard the first idiot that posted. I actually check here before the Fins site in most cases anyway.

2:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Riggs, for sure is he best bet to make the team, and actually make a significant contribution this year. First, he is a real player. Strong, pwoerful and remarkably quick for his size. He had the injuury bug at Tennesee and they shared carries with other quality backs,or else he would ahve been a star.

3:23 PM  
Anonymous Steve said...

Riggs, he ran all over guys his JR year. Was doin good last year til he got hurt. If he would have come out after his JR year he would have been a 1st day pick. With Ricky gone he's got a chance of contributing right away. Also, think about how the Jets had the rookie RB from Tenn. running all over the place at the end of last year. He wasn't running like that his last year cause Riggs had become the man at Tenn. If he gets back fully healthy he can be a good back up to Ronnie.

3:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks Armondo, out of all the guys, I like Sam McGrew. He's got talent, just got buried on the depth chart at FSU behind Simms and Nicholeson

6:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

7:02 PM  
Anonymous Swine said...

It's once in a blue moon that an UDFA makes even the slightest impact on a team. Frankly, just because we have weblogs and websites and more opportunities to talk about these guys doesn't make them any better prospects than they tended to be 10 years ago. Most (or all) of these characters are scrubs, and I will be surprised if even one of them makes the team and earns some playing time this coming season. THere's a reason they were undrafted.
Pessimistically yours,

2:45 AM  
Blogger Armando Salguero said...

Swine, you know of what you speak.

9:36 AM  
Blogger John Dolfan said...

I totally agree with you swine, but remember that even if the team across mostly frogs for the UDFA's there may be a prince hiding in there and they will NEVER know unless they investigate. What does it really cost the team to find out? I say practically nothing regardless of how it turns out.

My grandmother used to tell me, "Keep your expectations adjusted right and you will never be disappointed." Grandma was a sage. :)

10:27 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

1:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

99% of the comments on you blog are by the same people. Do they all work for the Miami Herald as interns, or are they employees of Drew?

1:23 PM  
Anonymous Steve said...

every year there's at least 1 that makes the team and a few that make practice squad. talent slides for reasons beyond their football abilities.

2:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sounds like the Dolphins have some potential with these pick-ups, i like Trent Berry of Oregon State, why? Because it might be easiest to make this team as a linebacker and I like production, over 100 tackles each of the last two seasons and 1st team all pac-10 is worth the look.

3:41 PM  
Blogger mindprobe said...

I live in a city close to where Riggs played highschool ball. The high school in our city was in the same district as his and they played each other every year. He had a lot of hype coming out of high school because of how well he did. He did have a few outstanding games at UT. I went to a lot of the UT home games over the past 3 years and the 2004 SEC Championship Game against Auburn. However, he often appeared to be one move or cut away from the big play. It was frustrating hearing so many great things about his potential and then seeing him have trouble applying that during games. He had problems fumbling early on but seemed to get over that. I hope he does well because I have been a Dolphan for 27 years. I am going to remain guarded in my optomism of him until I see how he does in an actual game or preseason game, if he makes the team.

9:14 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Fifita is a DT, he will be in the mix and should have been drafted if not for his lack of ideal height.

Riggs could have also been drafted. McGrew has a chance if he's athletic enough to shift to the outside.

This draft did not have too many "STUDS", but it had a lot of depth, which is why there were so many free agents.

Nick Saban is building a powerful program where even the practice squad will be loaded.

I am truly excited about Kyle Turley as a "TIght End" - or extra blocker at the line. I am also excited about giving some player the opportunity to be a slash type for the Dolphins (be it Marcus Vick, or any body else that is capable of filling the role).

Cyrus the Virus

1:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Swine sounds like a real idiot. Scrubs are guys like you who didn't even get playing time in High School. Get a clue you idiot if your even considered to be invited as a free agent to an NFL camp you have skill. Swine your the only scrub here.

7:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Gerald, you might not remember me; but I wish you the best of luck with your life and your success. I'm very proud of you!

2:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Gerald, you might not remember me; but I wish you the best of luck with your life and your success. I'm very proud of you!

2:51 PM  

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