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Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Three on the bubble

The Dolphins have handled their salary cap exceedingly well the last couple of years so they don't have to make any roster moves prior to the start of the league year in March to get under the cap.

But that doesn't mean they won't make moves for football, rather than financial reasons.

Three players with relatively high cap numbers or coming roster bonuses will, in all likelihood, either have to take a pay cut or be cut by the Dolphins in the coming weeks. Among those players are guard Seth McKinney, defensive end Kevin Carter and quarterback Joey Harrington.

Harrington, as you've read here in the past, has a $1 million roster bonus coming in March that the Dolphins simply are not going to pay. His play in 2006 simply does not warrant the team paying him that kind of bonus or carrying the $3.48 million cap figure that would bring for 2007.

So he must either restructure with a pay cut, or he's gone.

McKinney, on injured reserve all of 2006, also has a roster bonus coming due next month. With Bennie Anderson and Joe Toledo already on the roster as well as Jeno James and Rex Hadnot, the Dolphins already have a large contingent of interior linemen. So they will not guarantee McKinney any roster bonus monies that will drive up his cap number to the scheduled $4 million mark.

McKinney is a great guy and has been a fine player for Miami. But his bonus and the fact he was hurt all of last year will conspire to get him cut.

Another cut to watch is Kevin Carter. He's a team leader, a great guy for the media, and did OK on the field in 2006. But he has a whopping $6.48 million cap number for 2007. Soo.


Carter told me at the end of the season that he would be quite willing to restructure his contract to relieve the Dolphins cap situation. But he added that he probably wasn't going to take a pay cut per se.

The problem is the Dolphins aren't looking at him because of his huge cap number (although it doesn't help). They're looking at him because he really didn't play at the level they expected in 2006. His 5 1/2 sacks were nice, but not $6.48 million nice.

In a year that Buffalo, New England and the New York Jets all have more cap space than Miami, the Dolphins cannot afford to carry that figure on the books for a good, but not great player.

Your thoughts?


Anonymous openly pescimistic said...

I think all 3 cuts make sense. Honestly i'd like to see Joey back at a reduced price but I just don't think that'll happen. Kevin Carter is all but gone which is fine. If the Dolphins like Matt Roth, then he needs to play. They did trade Patrick Surtain in order to get him, and they could really use a guy like Surtain too. McKinney is a high salary figure that is good not great. He plays center which is a team need. If he takes a pretty substantial pay cut then it'd be nice to have him back. The Dolphins have many needs in corner/safety/d tackle/weak side linebacker/tackle/center/ and quarterback. Some potential free agents would be Nate Clements and Shawn Springs assuming he gets cut (if that happens it is most likely so that the Redskins can sign Clements.) Ken Hamlin and Mike Doss at safety. London Fletcher, Adalius Thomas, or more likely Boss Bailey at linebacker. D tackle is tough maybe bringing back Holliday is our best option. Eric Steinbach, or Max Starks at tackle are best option even though Starks is a restricted free agent and that whole proccess is a pain. Center Jeff Saturday would be nice. QB trading for David Carr sounds good. The Texans apparently want a 3rd round pick for him which appears to be a bit too much, so if they lower there asking price then he'd be a good pickup, especially if he would restructer his contract. Any thoughts?

11:19 AM  
Blogger USCScott said...

I think Joey would be an ideal backup QB if he'll take the pay cut. I like Carter's leadership and think he has more left if we can get the price right. But Seth McKinney? Perhaps it's his status as a "great guy" that has you believing that he "has been a fine player for Miami." I know you're the journalist connected with the team, but I watch every Sunday too. I've seen that joke of an offensive line when he's playing, and he's anything but a "fine player." He's a "fine player" only by the standard of Wannstedt/Spielman draftees. Things will be finer for Miami as soon as McKinney is cut.

11:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I believe Harrington would restructure his contract so long as he receives the same assurance that Lemon reportedly received - that is, the opportunity to compete for playing time.

12:25 PM  
Blogger quikphish83 said...


What did i say during the live chat?


1:26 PM  
Anonymous Ken from CT said...


I'd let all 3 go....The only one i would think of remotely keeping is Carter, but if he won't take a pay cut, as you said, bye bye. Joey is another teams bust...haven't we seen enough of these through the years?? Cade McKnown, Lawrence Phillips, Steve Emtman? BTW, good job on the Vonnie Holliday Story...I'm glad he's back....Maybe now Laverneus Coles will know who he is...

2:08 PM  
Anonymous Andrew said...

I'd hesitate strongly at releasing Carter outright if a decent restructure can be arranged. He's durable, by all accounts a truly solid guy and a great vet leader. And hey, aside from the lack of sacks, his play was pretty good last year. Not like they're deep at DE if they cut him.

3:50 PM  
Anonymous finndolphan said...

carter's the only one worth keeping but if he won't play for less money then chop!chop!while their chopping how about lj shelton(total bust at tackle)traveres tillman(ditto at safety)jeno james(over paid not very durable) and donnie spragan(virtually invisble lastyear).

5:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Are you buddies with Seth? He has been a "fine player", but Carter was only OK? McKinney has been mediocre to terrible from day 1. Carter is still a good DE, sacks aren't a true measuring stick for a LDE, please factor in his fine run defence. I agree his current salary needs to be addressed, but let's get real here. Losing Carter and starting Roth affects our depth too much.

6:56 PM  
Blogger Armando Salguero said...

Folks, I am not buddies with Seth. He was a starter just about every year he's been with the Dolphins and I believe if he had been healthy, he might have been Miami's best OL last year. That doesn't mean he has been great, but he hasn't been a loser either, like you guys make him sound.

Why, I wonder, do you think everytime I write about someone, there is a personal agenda?

The other day I said I love David Carr and some foof said the only reason is because he's a Christian and I'm a Christian. Now I think Seth has been fine so I must have some hidden motive for that.

This blog isn't Conspiracy Theory, guys. I'm not Mel Gibson. And none of you are Julia Roberts.

7:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Man, that 13.96 million dollars in cap room with those 3 guys. I can certainly understand cutting all 3, with Kevin Carter being the only one I would look at only if he redid his contract to open up salary cap space. Otherwise, let all 3 go.

I have read were the Dolphins may be interested in Chris Deilhman, the OG from San Diego and Dante Stallworth has expressed interest in Miami as well and he is a speed WR that Mueller drafted for New Orleans

8:17 PM  
Anonymous Randy said...

Kevin Carter would be a good backup, but I doubt he sees things that way. Joey deserves a chance to come back at a reduced salary, but he may not want to do that. McKinney......sorry, see ya later. In the end....I think we can live without all of them. Besides, the Fins have much more serious personnel issues than these three guys. It'd be nice to have McKinney as a backup b/c we're dangerously thin there, but, again, not for the kinda money he's scheduled to get.

8:31 PM  
Anonymous Julia Roberts said...

Armando i also like David Carr. I tandum of him and Joey Harrington would be fine at QB for me. McKinney is OK not great but not as horrible as everybody seems to think. I say get rid of Carter. Sure he's still decent but he's getting paid like a top defensive end and he's just not anymore. I'm not saying that Matt Roth is the answer either but i think the difference in salary between the 2 more than makes up for the difference in ability. Also lets bring in Steinbach. Maybe if enough people say it they will forget about Leonard Davis and bring in Him instead.

8:41 PM  
Anonymous Marino=best all time said...

I agree with Julia in bringing in Steinbach the guy's a stud. Let's add Boss Bailey to the list too.

8:57 PM  
Anonymous Jon said...

Bye Bye Kevin Carter. Thye should cut Wilkinson, and Zgonina too. Time to let the young guys get a shot

12:37 AM  
Anonymous patrick said...

Armando, it's kind of a shame about Seth McKinney. We seasoned him for 2 years then he finally gets his shot, plays pretty well at center for a year. Then the next season after 13 games he tears up his ankle. Then last year he has the cervical spine injury and doesn't play a game. I think he had potential, but he doesn't seem to be able to stay healthy.

8:31 AM  
Anonymous Hank in the 400 said...

Carter would be good to keep but he needs to reconsider his stance on pay. All these guys have a 10 sack season and demand more money but when there play starts to slide they don't want to consider less pay. He is a solid LDE but not at that expense.

Matt Roth is good and brings an extreme energy and attitude to every game and I think he will only get better if he doesn't have to split as much time.

We need to be wise with our cap $ but we need some youth and talent that can impact now. It is going to take more than one year to turn things around I think but Cameron seems to making some of the right moves. He isn't the GM but he seems to be in the ear of Mueller.

We all have players we like more because we are familiar with them and that goes for coaches too. That just goes back to as a team we need to have a competition at every position and not sign people because we've seen their name in the paper a lot.

After the season he had last year Joey would probably rather restrucure than risk the market.

McKinney is too unhealthy. he needs to restructure and maybe take on more of a back up role.

Armando, ss for you and your nepotistic I mean friendship, I mean Christian, I mean hidden agenda conspiracy type writing sometimes people automatically assume that there is some hidden agenda because sometimes what you put out as food for discussion goes against what they believe.

10:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's ironic that Chris Chambers is not part of this conversation. Talk about someone not playing up to his salary. Chambers has the highest cap hit of any offensive player (around $6.5 million in 2006), yet played well enough last season to rank only third or fourth on the team in most receiving categories. QB play certainly affected that, but he should still be leading the team in receiving if he's played and paid as the No. 1 receiver. He is one of the NFL's highest-paid receivers, yet has had only one 1,000-yard season in his career. Good CBs simply take him out of games too easily because of his poor route running or inability to get open--besides the mind-numbing number of passes that him in the hands without a completion.

11:21 AM  
Anonymous finndolphan said...

your right on about chambers anon!one good year and he's one of the leagues highest paid wide-outs!i think it was a big mistake giving him that kind of money,although someone else probably would have if they didn't,m'cmichael is in the same category both being paid like perenial pro-bowlers which neither one is!too bad they have so much money tied up in these two as wellas daunte!let's see what they can do under cameron but i would all three on a short leash!

12:01 PM  
Anonymous Julia Roberts said...

I resent that!

12:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey if you guys and gales check I have been saying Chambers is one of our week links so to speak. If you look you will see he is and has been in the top 5 for WR in terms of droped passes. I think with his stature he gets to to play however deep down I think all of our QB's lost confidence in him. But here is a stat. If Chambers just catches 10% more passes that are thrown his way all of our QB's rating go up into a top 10 QB. And we would not even be having this discussion of getting a new QB. You all would be very happy with either Pep and or Joey.

12:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here is just a thought and my own speculation. Who is to say Tampa does not pick Quinn. We all know their QB possition as well as Gurdens fasenation with QB's. How about if this senerio falls into place. Tampa takes Quinn and then we could see the WR Calvin Jackson fall all the way to Washington and or Minn. I do not see Arizona taking a WR. We then trade Chambers and our #1 for their #1 and take Jackson.

12:37 PM  
Anonymous Randy said...

like i've always said....chambers is the best #2 receiver in the league. furthermore...this bull of certain black receivers not playing hard for certain white QBs and then trying hard again when a black QB comes into the game is mind-numbing to me. I saw it with my own two eyes, so don't bother telling me it didn't happen. I'd be more than happy to see Chambers move him on draft day for a better pick and take a legitimate #1 receiver....something we haven't had around here in over a decade.

1:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i say we keep big daddy ,and get rid of the other three and se what we got with the rookies on the d- line

3:20 PM  
Anonymous Hank in the 400 said...

I think the Dolphins will probably try for Quinn and the reason I think that is that our new QB coach is Quinn's personal/private coach. I think we will see Harrington and others that will grt roster bonuses might feel the edge of the blade and get cut right before March 2.

As for chambers he blames his poor performance on the fact he is a slot reciever and he played on the outside. Doesn't explain the drops and I saw some that looked almost like knock downs not drops. I don't know if I agree with the black and white issue but I will say he apeared to play better for Pep and Lemon than Joey. That might be due to play calling or whatever but we do need a hungry #1 reciever who can be in the top 5 in catches not drops. his biggest drops all appeared to be on 3rd down we they hurt the most.

we need the same 27-28 guys to give it all and leave it all on the field for 17 straight weeks and not keep looking for guys to play because someone else isn't bringing his "A" game. If they can't bring their A game every week they should settle for "B" pay

4:07 PM  
Anonymous the original julia roberts said...

You guys are all idiots for wanting to get rid of Chambers. You make the point about him having 1 good year but in reality you want to punish him for having 1 bad year. People like you guys who are so quick to jump on someones bandwagon but be the first to jump off if something doesn't go just right. You're just like Bengals fans. And don't use my identities as your own.

7:49 PM  
Anonymous finndolphan said...

if chambers is such a stud why has he drawn a virtual blank against every good corner he's played against? he's made his hay against garbage corners and weak coverage or when he's been put into the slot versus a safety!even then he has dropped too many passes and almost always fails to adjust his route to the situation!suck on that julia!

8:22 PM  
Blogger quikphish83 said...

And i suppose Nate Clemments of the Buffulo Bills is a bad corner for getting torched for over 200 yards last year? The reality is that chris chambers is a reciever the dolphins need. He isn't an elite reciever but he certainly isn't the reason he didn't break 1000 yards last season. It all has to do with inconsistency at the quarterback position and poor offensive line play. Give us an above average quarterback who feels moderately safe in the pocket and watch Chris catch between 1100-1300 yards a season. The fact that Marty Booker had several 1000 yard seasons with the bears before coming to the Dolphins suggests that something other than the recievers is causing a lack of production. Yes Chambers drops too many passes, but he still manages to catch a lot too, provided you throw to him.

11:43 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I respectfully disagree. Chambers is in the top 5 each and every year for droped passes. If he would just catch 10% more passes thrown his way he is over the 1000 yard mark. The year he made the pro bowl he caught those 10% extra passes. Part of the inconsitancy at QB is that they do not trust Chambers to catch the ball. So they hold it a little longer looking for the 2 and 3rd reciever when in fact the ball should have been thrown Chambers way. In fact I feel a lot of Peps sacks was a result that he was waiting way to long for Chambers. Think about this how many of Patten Mannings thtows was made wether the WR was open or not. Our QB's just do not have the confidence in our WR to just throw it up and let them go and get it. Many of Patten Mannings completions was highlite real catches made by Harrison. Many of Carson Palmers completions were highlite real catches made by Johnson. That is what we just do not have. If our WR are not wide open our QB's just hold on to the ball. That is one of the reasons Pep looked so good with Moss. Any QB needs that go get em WR's. In San Diego they did not have the faster and or largest WR but they had WR that went after the ball. In NO Brees who every one says was the better choice simply had WR that went after the ball. No QB is going to look all that good with the WR crew we presently have. And this bull that Chambers was in the slot and he needs to be outside is just that Bull. A WR just runs and catches. Its as simple as that. A WR needs the mantality that a ball within 5 yards of him is his. All the good WR have that. Chambers does not.

1:47 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Our QB problem is all about the phrase The QB gets way to much credit when this go right and way to much blame when things do not.

1:49 AM  
Anonymous Esteban said...

to answer the question from the last blog first...Leonard Davis is very good at Guard. He's mediocre at Left Tackle. I'd pay him almost Hutchinson money to play OG. But I doubt he'd want that since he probably feels he can make more at LT even though his quality of play won't be as high.

As for cuttin those three...cut Harrington, cut McKinney (can always bring him back later after he sees he's not gonna get much money as a free agent) and Carter restructure since can't be paying all that much money to him and Holliday. Need to put money toward younger guys. Plus probably best to let the young guys they already have to sink or swim. And the Chambers talk, yeah he's the best we got but still overpaid. Restructuring him would be wise. Trading would be even better.

8:46 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I posted the original comment about Chambers. This back-and-forth debate about his playing is losing sight of my original point and the theme of Armando's post:

Chris Chambers is the Dolphins' highest-paid offensive player. He has been for several years. His cap hit in 2007 will be $7.3 million! Is he worth that? Has he ever been worth that? How many seasons must pass with him being paid so much before someone realizes that his salary is not comensurate with his performance--regardless of his potential, the occasionally spectacular catch or the one season when he lit it up during Pro Bowl voting? It's as simple as that. Go back and forth as much as you want about his positives and negatives. The reality either way is that he's not worth his salary.

(By the way, the next-highest-paid offensive guys by their cap hit in 2007 are Culpepper at $6.9 million and McMichael at $5.4 million. If the Dolphins want to clean house of guys not playing up to their pay, I have a pretty good idea where to start.)

8:48 AM  
Anonymous ready for a new topic said...

Are you guys all fans of TO as well? Everybody says he's among the top recievers in the league and last I checked he led the league in dropped passes last year. So therefore he is garbage and we should trade our top offensive weapon in Chambers plus the 9th overall selection for Calvin Johnson who's never even layed in an NFl game before? Thta along with Culpepepr will return to form (which is impossible since he never had ability to begin with) are the dumbest statements I have ever heard in my life. And I work with children with severe nuerological disorders. Get Chambers a good quarterback and that good quarterback a halfway decent offensive line and let's see what happens. Gus Frerotte is the best QB we've had here since Dan Marino. By the way I do agree that his salary is a little high for him or anybody for that matter. But on the same side if you think you're gonna trade up and take Calvin Johnson and that his salary is going to be any lower than you're crazy.

12:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ready for a New Topic: Get real. There's no comparison between TO and Chambers. TO led the league in dropped passes while producing some of the best yardage and most TDs in the entire NFL. Chambers dropped all of his passes while ranking *fourth* on just the Dolphins in many receiving categories. What an awful analogy.

2:02 PM  
Anonymous patrick said...

Please "ready for a new topic" I agree with anon. putting Chambers anywhere near TO in receiving skills is like putting Culpepper at Marino's level. Chambers is the most over rated WR in the NFL period. Now granted I would not want TO on my football team for obvious reasons but as far as skill is concerned there is no comparison. You may want to read up on TO last season a little bit... He played with a broken hand! The guy might be a jerk but he brings it on game day.

Chambers does some simple receiving no-nos that drive me nuts. He continually allows the ball to come into his body on simple catches. We learned in pee wee to catch the ball with your hands. He will go as far as to slide to the ground on a low throw so he can catch the ball in his body. He's been in the league way too long for this to be corrected. What it alludes to is that he is afraid to extend his arms. We call this "alligator arms" and he has bad case of them.

He took a hit a few years ago and you never see him catch the ball over the middle. To be the highest paid offensive player on the team we should be getting that production out of him.

And someone keeps throwing out stats about dropped passes related to QB rating. How many interceptions can be related back to balls clanking off Chambers and McMichael's hands. I wonder how that would affect QB ratings?

4:16 PM  
Anonymous Hank in the 400 said...

Back to the otiginal topic I think that if they don't do some major restructuring they might all three be gone. We need some cap room to sign FAs and draftees. As for Chambers these guys have a good season and they want a new contract even if they have 3-4 more years left so I think when they start to slide the team should be able to renegotiate for less money.

It's time for youth with talent and we have only drafted a couple of QBs since Marino left and none of them play anymore.

They need to know if Quinn will be there at 9 and then that will dtermine what they do with Joey. Nobody they draft will QB this year except in an extreme situation.

Matt "Party Boy" Roth might just give us the youth and talent to consider the cut with Carter but only because of money because though he only had 5 1/2 sax he is hell of run blocker.

As for McKinney we seem to give a lot great talent pay to average players. Maybe we need a Saturday to play on Sunday

5:26 PM  
Blogger Bloodlust said...

I have liked Chambers as a receiver, but you cannot be good this year and play poorly the next and expect bonuses, or to be kept on the roster. This is professional football, and the players are given these contracts under the understanding that you will play with the same effort, motivation, and keep your stats within the range of your expectancy.

This is not just a popularity contest. Chambers may be liked by many, but if he is not performing to his potential then he will be cut. Thats the name of the game. Bonuses are given to help motivate theses players to continue to play equal to, or better the following years. Chris unfortunately did not show his true potential, nor did he seem as motivated as he should have shown on the playing field.

By the way, I am not singling him out because their are many players this past year that played as if it did not matter. Any player who thinks he has the right to play 100% if and when he feels like it should be cut. His main objective as a contracted player is to give 100% or more.

If we plan to get anywhere this year we want and need players that want to give their all every game, and every year they play here. Making cuts and sticking to the reasoning of the cuts tells these guys they will not continue here if they don't conform to this idealism.

11:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

COuldnt of said it any better. Finally we have a writer that knows what hes talking about!
Seth Mckinney could be an exception. We need the best for "the frontline", caz were going to war this year, and you need the best up there in the trenches, not puss*** that have no idea.
its going to improve everything on the offensive side, period.
Kevin Carter, cut, Bye-bye. You know I still cant get over the dolphins getting rid of "Ogunleye" to put a slow ass like carter. are you kidding me... Whos coaching these teams, i mean seriously

12:11 PM  
Anonymous Kevin Carter said...

Hey, screw you guys.

11:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

all 3 gone, thay give us some salary room, miami "have"!! to go into the free agency and get some of the solid starters in the market at the critical positions (clements, smooth, fletcher, thomas). matt roth its a 2 round pick, and he has been a solid back up he deserves a chance to be a starter.
and we must get 2 starters in the draft, qb, dt, db, wr. we now that with 9th spot at lest 1 of this needs will be available. so or gm an our very! expensive coaching staff must do their homework and fill our needs now!! the team is not getting any younger

8:02 PM  
Anonymous Greybase said...

This is gonna be real interesting watching the Dolphins exact repeat of last year's debacle when Culpepper again performs like a statue. After about 3 games and 50 sacks apparently the Dolphins will allow scrub Cleo Lemon to take over?

Joey Harrington instantly becomes one of the top QB's available. Yes he had ups and downs in last years lousy Mularkey Offense but still played better than any other veteran or FA available.

Oh yeah right he threw a few picks because Chambers has alligator arms. Well Sorry but Rex Grossman, Tony Romo, Hasselbeck and Roethlisberger all threw more INT% and those guys are all starters. Miami is losing a decent QB to save a piddly 1 mil, while Culpepper eats up 10 mil over two years for doing nothing.

1:52 PM  

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