Coming into the 2011 season, everyone knew this was quarterback Chad Henne's last chance to prove he was the guy to lead the Miami Dolphins. During the lockout, Henne did all the right things. He organized player only workouts. He met with offensive coordinator during the one day lifting of the lockout in April. He tried to install as much of the offense as he could without any coaches around.
And, he tried to be the leader the team needed.
He did enough for the team to vote him one of their captains heading into the season. And he did enough at the start of the season that some fans were starting to wonder if Henne had, indeed, matured into a quality starting quarterback.
That is, until the season ending shoulder bug bit Henne during the team's Week 4 contest against the San Diego Chargers. Henne separated his non-throwing shoulder, and, despite his desire to get back on the field with the injury, the team and outside doctors all said the same thing: season ending surgery was needed.
So, now, with the season over, and his contract expiring in March with the end of the current league year, Henne made what was most liekly his last public appearance as a member of the Miami Dolphins. But, that's not for a lack of wanting to be here.
"I'm going to be here until they push me out of here," Henne told reporters on Monday, according to the Palm Beach Post.
When the topic of conversations turned to his talking with the Dolphins' front office about a new contract, Henne replied, "I hope so. If not, then I'll move on, but I love this team, I love being down here."
"I get another check-up [on the shoulder] in about a month but everything's going well," Henne added. "I've been strengthening it; it's coming along faster than normal."
Henne talked about the job the team, and his replacement Matt Moore, did following the injury. The team, according to Henne, did a "great" job. Moore, according to Henne, did a "really good job [with] the offense."
But, Henne also said he thought he was off to a solid start this season, before being injured.
"You can look at the turnovers, but that was at the end of the game when you had to force the ball," Henne stated. He had thrown 4 touchdowns, but also 4 interceptions, in the 3+ games before the injury. "I feel like I can make the big plays at the end. I can do that and I will do that. But it's just more consistency."
The Dolphins are expected to draft a quarterback during April's draft, but could resign Henne as a backup, or to challenge Moore and the rookie in training camp. However, it's more likely Henne will be looking for a job elsewhere next season. And, with the state of the quarterback situation in the NFL, he really won't have a problem finding a spot on some roster.