It's amazing how quickly the NFL season comes and goes. Sundays without football really suck, huh?
But I guess the offseason does free up your Sundays for other things you might neglect during the season. And so while you were out doing some of those things this weekend, here's what you might have missed.
Dolphins VP of Football Operations Bill Parcells gave a rare interview to the NY Daily News' NFL writer Gary Myers. Among other things, though, the most important nugget from his talk with Myers is how he basically put an end to the "will he or won't he leave" talk. Says Parcells:
"My intention is to do what I've been doing. I think we will have ample time to figure each other out. I'm very optimistic. I've had two or three meetings with Steve Ross and he seems to be a guy who wants to do things the right way. There will be a period of adjustment. He's got to find out about the business. We are going to try and make things work. I'm not doing this forever."
To me, it seems like Parcells doesn't want to come out and just say he'll definitely stay. Instead, he seems like he wants to stay and will stay in Miami - as long as Ross doesn't do something in the next 30 days to make Bill question Ross's motives for buying the team. But barring any unforeseen change in how things are run in Miami, Bill is probably sticking around.
And to any of you who think Parcells is just going to try and leverage his "opt-out" clause for more money, don't count on it. Parcells told Myers:
"I will never take another dollar from the Dolphins other than what I am earning. I'm not trying to leverage anything. I got more money than I can spend now."
I honestly think Bill feels not only extreme loyalty to his guys - Tony Sparano and Jeff Ireland - but also that the job he does in Miami will be the make or break point of his legacy. If Bill can build a champion in Miami, he might go down as the greatest football mind in a long, long time.
SATELE PLAYED '08 HURT
A lot of people were disappointed with the play of 2nd year center Samson Satele in 2008. But now, we might have a clue as to why he struggled so much. Buried in his latest article, Barry Jackson tells us that Satele played 2008 with an injured shoulder:
One factor in center Samson Satele's up-and-down play (according to the Dolphins' thinking) is that he played all season with problems in his right shoulder and was diagnosed this month with a torn labrum. He had recent surgery and should be fine for next season. Satele (295 pounds) and the Dolphins want him to bulk up -- he's shooting for 305-310.
Sp perhaps Satele's days as Miami's starting center aren't numbered. If we can assume this is accurate, it's understandable why Satele disappointed in 2008. And I'm very interested to see if he can come back not only healthy but also heavier. We know this regime prefers big, physical centers. And if Satele can put on 10 to 15 pounds without the added weight badly hindering his athleticism, Satele could be just what this regime likes in their centers.
What the Dolphins do in the offseason, either in free agency or in the draft, will be a big sign as to how much faith the Fins have in Satele's ability at center. Of course, even if the front office did bring in a new starting center, Satele could definitely shift over to guard (at 315 pounds) and compete for a starting job with the likes of Justin Smiley (who, if healthy, will definitely be a starter) and Donald Thomas.
Earlier this offseason, various Miami newspapers guessed that the Dolphins would have around $25 million in cap space this offseason. I ran the numbers myself as well and figured that the Dolphins probably had between $25 and $30 million - depending on some unspecified contracts and bonus money. Well it seems that DraftSharks.com has Miami closer to $30 million than the Miami papers. They ran some numbers and came up with $28 million in cap room for the Dolphins - the 6th most in the NFL. Tampa Bay and Arizona both have over $40 million. Denver, Kansas City, and Tennessee each have over $30 million. And then the Dolphins lead a ten team group that has at least $20 million in cap space.
On the flip side, the Jets are a reported $7 million over the cap - the worst figure in the league - but can save roughly $13 million on their '09 cap figure if Brett Favre retires.