What seemed like a slow weekend in terms of Dolphin news got a hell of a lot more interesting late Sunday night (not in a good way) when word got out that Ronnie Brown had been arrested for DUI. But there's some other interesting news to discuss as well.
So let's quickly touch on the headlines from the past weekend.
Ronnie gets busted for DUI
We don't need to re-hash the details of the reported incident. You can read all about it right here. Two things, though, stand out to me here. One - if Ronnie had only used his damn turn signal. That was the initial reason he got pulled over. He wasn't swerving or speeding. He changed lanes without using a freakin' blinker. And two - Brown is now the third Dolphin to have a run-in with the law since the season ended. Anyone else bothered by this?
First we had Tony McDaniel and his "domestic dispute" back in February. Then it was Will Allen, days after telling the media he'd be starting again for the Dolphins in 2010, getting a DUI himself late in February. And now we have Brown getting arrested for driving under the influence. Is anyone else sick and tired of having to worry about these players when they have free time?
(And this isn't even including Jason Ferguson's stupidity of using some kind of performance-enhancing drug.)
The Brown news, specifically, is shocking - to be honest. By all accounts, Ronnie is a good guy who is active in the community and who has never had any issue with the law. He's well-liked by his teammates and his coaches for his laid-back personality. And Jeff Darlington tweeted that Brown has even taken a limo to South Beach before to avoid this kind of mistake. But I guess everyone is entitled to one slip-up.
The offseason training program begins for the Dolphins on Monday. Brown is expected to be there. And I hope that he makes it a point to address Bill Parcells and Jeff Ireland as well as his coaches and teammates to apologize. But from everything we've heard about Ronnie, he'll do just that because he is a classy, stand-up guy.
Dolphins make trip to Illinois to see Benn work out
The Dolphins were represented at the University of Illinois Pro Day by wide receivers coach Karl Dorrell. Why? Obviously to scout wide receiver Arrelious Benn - one of the handful of receivers battling to become the second receiver taken in next month's draft.
At last month's Combine, Benn ran an "official" 4.53 in the 40 to go with a 43 inch vertical leap and 20 reps on the bench press. At his Pro Day, Benn reportedly improved on those numbers. The Herald reports Benn was timed as low as 4.38 in the 40 on some stopwatches and between 4.40 and 4.42 by most. He also matched his 37 inch vertical.
We should hear more from Benn's Pro Day early this week. But all indications are that he didn't hurt his draft value at all - and may have helped it. That makes you wonder if he'll even still be on the board when the Dolphins pick in round two.
The Hughes bandwagon getting revved up
If you haven't yet jumped aboard my Jerry Hughes bandwagon, you better hurry. It's going to get filled up pretty quick.
The Palm Beach Post has caught wind of the improving draft stock of TCU DE/OLB Jerry Hughes and even posted a link to Big Blue View's community mock draft where the Dolphin representative drafted Hughes with the 12th overall pick. Of course, if somebody from the Post had been reading our site, he'd know that we've been discussing Hughes and the possibility he is on Miami's radar for weeks now.
But the interesting part of the Post's article is the quote from an "NFL scout" who had this to say about the TCU star:
"This guy is going to rise up charts. He’s hanging in weeds in early second round with most people. No one is talking about him, no one wants to let the cat out of the bag, no one wants to say, 'I really like this kid.’"
"A lot of teams hold in high regard when comes to 3-4 rush linebackers."
And there it is. Just like that, the cat is out of the bag. Now is #12 still too high for Hughes. I'm not sure. But I can tell you that I'd be comfortable taking him 12th overall even if other more highly-touted pass-rushers (Jason Pierre-Paul, Sergio Kindle, etc...) are still on the board. And if the Dolphins are going to draft any "short" outside linebacker, I really hope it's Hughes and not Michigan's Brandon Graham. With that said, we know this regime likes players from big school or at least big conferences. In the end, that could be enough to keep the Dolphins away from Hughes - despite his terrific numbers and outstanding game tape.
I hope I'm wrong about that, though. Hughes is a guy I really believe will be great - not good, but great - at the next level.
- Like I said earlier, the Dolphins offseason training program gets underway on Monday. And we should expect to hear most - if not all - players attending. After all, you don't miss a Bill Parcells offseason training program. You just don't.
- It's expected that the league will announce the opening week prime-time games on Monday at the owner's meetings as well as the Thanksgiving Day games. The league will also vote sometime this week on the revised OT rules - but only for the playoffs. I don't get that. If it's good enough to use in the playoffs, why not also use it in the regular season. I like the idea of not allowing a first-possession FG win the game in OT. But it's not my preferred OT method. I'd much rather the "first to five" idea we spoke about a few weeks ago.
- If you don't feel well, Chad Henne is the guy you want taking care of you. Why? "My fiancee had her tonsils out [recently]," says Henne. "I’ve kind of been babysitting her. It’s painful for her, but I’ve been getting her ice cream, jello, yogurt, all that stuff." Yup - our QB is also such a doll, isn't he?
- One final note - I just want to let you know that you will begin to see some of our excellent NFL Draft prospect scouting reports from various bloggers roll out this week. They were well-received last year and this year should be much of the same.