Stay Away From Veteran QB’s


The Miami Dolphins top the list of QB needy teams when free agency resumes…eventually.  Teams like the Washington Redskins and the Arizona Cardinals are also sitting atop the league as well as a few others who may or may not add veteran signal callers to their mix.  For my money, the season would ride on the arm of Chad Henne and the Miami Dolphins should buck the popular media belief and stick with what they have at home.

Three things can happen in the next 5 months.  The lockout will be forced to end, in which case free agency will begin, the league will get something done prior to the start of training camps in which case free agency will begin, or the lockout will continue and games will get cancelled, in which case it really won’t matter who is on the Dolphins roster.  My guess would be that many fans simply won’t care at that point.

A forced end to the lockout will give the Dolphins the best chance to find a veteran and still allow that vet to learn the play book.  A lockout that ends in early August will leave a veteran QB trying to learn a new offense on the run.  With the Phins installing a new system of sorts…some kind of Brian Daboll/New England Patriot/Cleveland Brown/Wild Cat/run-first hybrid, your guess is as good as mine, any new offensive players will likely struggle if the season opens late.

That is not, however, why the Phins should stay away from a veteran caller.  It’s simply because no one is really worth the money or the investment of draft picks that it would take to get them here.  And that is a problem the Dolphins will need to figure out.

Kevin Kolb is supposedly the best option that would be available.  He has already been shopped by the Eagles and everyone knows he is available in trade.  Kolb lacks game experience and in his first year as the showcased QB, he lost his job to Michael Vick after he was injured early in the 2010 season.  Kolb has the right body and mechanics to succeed in the NFL and he comes from solid coaching in Philly but the Eagles won’t let him roll out of the “City of Brotherly Love” out of love alone.  He is going to be costly.  Both in terms of a new contract and the compensation that his new team will give up.  It’s likely to cost a 1st and more, but even a 2nd rounder is something that the Dolphins really can’t afford at this point.  Kolb would cost a lot more.

Kyle Orton is the next name on the trade list.  He comes with the working knowledge of Brandon Marshall from their time in Denver together but Orton didn’t lead the Broncos to the playoffs or even into a real contention for the division.  He is streaky and some of his mechanics need work.  While he has had far more “real” football time as a starter, both in Denver and Chicago, the one fact is that he was traded out of Chicago and two years later is possibly being traded out of Denver.  Hardly a glowing endorsement for your teams future.  And Orton will cost at least a 2nd round pick.  Do you spend that slot on a player who will have been traded twice?

Matt Hasselbeck could hit the open market as a free agent.  Last season he took the Seahawks into the playoffs and shocking first round win in the one game elimination race.  But he is far over the wrong side of 30 and it’s not likely that he would take his talents to Southbeach for a reasonable price.  Still, if the team is looking for a veteran stop-gap who won’t cost picks and could bridge the Chad Henne to next years draft class, he might be one of the better options.  Hasselbeck also has injury concerns as well and that should deter the Dolphins from making a play on him.  After all, the team is said to be looking for someone to compete against Henne and in reality the Phins would make Hasselbeck their starter outright.

Carson Palmer’s name is mentioned in sync with the Miami Dolphins more than almost any other QB.  But let’s get this out there now.  He is not the long term future for the Dolphins but instead will cost the Dolphins part of their future.  Palmer is not on the trading block according to Bengals owner Mike Brown.  If he was on the block, Brown would have to be “Wowed” by an offer.  So forget about a 4th or a 5th or a combination of third day selections.  Palmer won’t leave Cincy for less than a second or at best a third.  A 3rd would be fine but Palmer is 31 and entering the latter stages of his career.  He would literally be looking to “resurrect” his career in Miami as his production has fallen off over the last few seasons.  While some will say that “He was with the Bengals” as a reason for his slide, let’s not forget that “He would be in Miami” who has had one of the worst offenses over the last two seasons.

Donovan McNabb comes to the list of names as yet another top QB who was traded and failed at his next stop.  The Broncos have two QB’s that have failed for them in Orton and Quinn while Washington took a shot on McNabb in a trade out of Philly when it was all but clear that the franchise was in good hands with…yep, Kevin Kolb who is now, one year later, on his way out of Philly as well.  McNabb still has the attitude to lead an offense but he is long in the tooth and really needs a supporting cast to compliment his mental lapses in judgement.  In Washington it was said he took some plays off or didn’t put his heart into it.  That could easily have been the clashes with HC Mike Shannahan.  Either way, his stint in Washington appears to be a short one, and it says a lot about a QB when rumors persist that his replacement will be Vince Young.  McNabb may be another stop-gap QB who would legitimately compete with Henne for the starting job.  But McNabb isn’t going to come to Miami on a scaled down salary and he will expect to start.  He is one of those QB’s that could actually start the season and be replaced by Henne a couple games later.  He is that streaky these days.

Vince Young was never a QB that I had on my FA radar but truth be told, he might be the best option available to the team.  He will be free once he is cut by the Titans and his on-field and off-field issues will keep his salary lower than some of the others.  He has the speed to run the WC, the arm to throw down-field, and the attitude to win.  What he doesn’t possess is pure leadership by example.  Some question whether he is a team player.  In Miami, would he be able to mesh with Marshall and the rest of the cast?  Would he hinder the offense or support it?  Can he learn a new system quickly?  On the upside, he could be cast off in a year or two if he is a failure or if the team finds a better option.  Still, there are too many questions that surround Young to risk the build of your team.  At least for now.

Brady Quinn was supposed to be the Miami Dolphins draft pick in 2007 when Cam Cameron and Randy Mueller (who is the GM for one of the UFL teams now) decided to shock everyone in the NFL world ala the NY Jets by taking Ted Ginn, Jr. and his entire family to return punts to the sideline.  Quinn sat in the “green room” and watched pick after pick leave Radio City Music Hall while he and his girlfriend squirmed until the Cleveland Browns ended his agony.  Quinn spent a short time in Cleveland before being shipped off to the Denver Broncos.  So that’s two cast off QB possibilities from a Broncos team that really needs an identity at QB.  They are after all pinning their hopes on Tim Tebow.  Quinn isn’t the answer long term but might be a solid addition if the team wants to let Tyler Thigpen go or if new rules allow him to leave as an RFA.  I wouldn’t suspect that Quinn will be beating out Chad Henne anytime soon though.

There are a few other possible names that could float up if and when FA begins but in reality they are simply names to keep depth on the roster.  Not long term solutions, there simply isn’t any on the FA market or the trade block.  Next year the Dolphins will likely see Chad Henne’s contract run out and he will become a free agent or he will have a far better season and the Dolphins will give him a lot more money to keep him.  It’s more likely the former.  The Phins will, in all likelihood be shopping for a QB next season regardless of what they do this off-season.  Whether it’s Palmer, Hasselbeck, Young, Orton, or Kolb.  So why throw money and picks out the window?

The Dolphins are better off allowing their season to ride on the shoulders of Chad Henne.  Coach him and let him play unsaddled with the horrid play calling of Dan Henning.  See what the kid has or doesn’t have and then address their future next year for the long term or if Henne works out well this season, get him signed and draft another QB to push him further.  I simply don’t see the options to risk the picks or the teams mechanics on the unknown because the future of the Dolphins QB position is not available this year.

Tags: Brady Quinn Carson Palmer Chad Henne Donovan McNabb Kevin Kolb Kyle Orton Matt Hasselbeck Miami Dolphins Vince Young

  • bahamas

    In your eyes what are your expectation for Henne this upcoming season that would merit strong consideration for the Front Office to re-sign him?
    More TD’s that INT?
    Pro Ball?

  • josylyn

    I agree with this writer: don’t draft a QB, don’t pic up a vet. That way we can let Henne “develop” and finish last in the AFT East. Mark my words, I said it first here. Man Dolphin fans are stupid.

  • Patrik Nohe

    I have to be honest I would be completely fine with Orton. He’s not being pushed out of Denver for lack of production, he’s being pushed out because they wasted a first rounder on Tim Tebow. His last two years in Denver, he was not the reason the team missed the playoffs. He’s completed 60% of his throws, two years ago his TD:INT ration was 21:12 last year it was 20:9. It was frankly a joke he lost his starting job last year, especially after he made Brandon Lloyd (who history says is more of an Antonio Bryant, one-year-wonder than a legitimate ace receiver) look like Brandon Marshall last season. I’m not sure what Miami should do at QB, and frankly I’m still so angry about the draft I’ve become apathetic, but Kyle Orton is a little better than I think you give him credit for.

    • Sneller

      I agree 100% with the Orton comments here. Most people always look at is as the QB fault that teams aren’t contenders. Well, look what Denver’s defense did. Almost nothing. Orton amassed good numbers. Better than Henne. We could all see we had a struggling QB. Seeing Denver play, you could see it wasn’t. I fully believe that Orton is the one guy that could make us contenders.

  • josylyn

    Part of the reason Dolphin’s suck is that the fan base and writers like this allow and condone mediocrity. It’s always: “Next Year.” Yea right, if you can’t see that Henne sucks now you shouldn’t be commenting at all on football. Go join a woman’s group.

  • onole1

    I didn’t see Bulger on your list. He would be my top choice to come in and compete with Henne for the job. Hopefully the year he basically took off let his body heal. When healthy the guy can “spin” the ball as the new saying goes.

  • josylyn

    I would take Cleo Lemmon over Hennepuke anyday.

    • Patrik Nohe

      You must not have been watching Lemon then. I’m not a huge fan of Henne either, but at least he’s not so sackless as to run out of bounds at the goal-line to avoid contact on 4th and goal in New England. Look for yourself, just fast forward to minute three and you’ll see why that’s one of the least… well why I just have no respect for that comment.

      http://www.nfl.com/videos/nfl-game-highlights/09000d5d80566b6d/NFL-GameDay-Dolphins-vs-Patriots-highlights

    • nickzi

      I am getting the impression that Josylyn probably invests in Chinese dry-wall companies a lot as well. Cleo Lemon is worse than Brady Quinn, and that’s quite the achievement. Henne looked fairly promising in 2009, and a good part of his problems in 2010 was down to some of the most bizarre and almost masochistically stupid play-calling any NFL franchise has ever inflicted on its offense.

  • http://www.PhinNation.com Bill

    I think the Dolphins will make some sort of a move for a backup plan/upgrade for Chad Henne. Sparano/Ireland’s jobs are basically on the line this year, so they would be wise to have a QB that could compete, should the 2010 version of Chad Henne show up in 2011.

    Personally, I like Orton the best of the group. Over the last 2 years in Denver he’s thrown for 41 TDs and 21 INTs. That type of TD/INT ratio is an instant upgrade over Henne. IF you pair that with our still growing defense, you have a team that can make a run at the playoffs. I would hate giving up a 2nd round pick for him, but that price could come down. I’m not a huge VY fan, but he could challenge Henne for the starting spot and would likely come without draft pick compensation.

  • Brian Miller

    I won’t respond to Joclyn since I have zero idea if he is for real or not.

    As for the other QB’s, there is no franchise QB among them so why blow your wad on something else? Orton won’t be the long term answer any more than McNabb or Brady Quinn. So why go out and buy another stop gap? Truth is, the Dolphins will be looking for a QB next year regardless of whether they sign one of these guys or not, that’s a fact. And if they don’t go out and look for a franchise QB next season, they are idiots. I’m tired of retreads and every single one of them is a retread.

    Bulger or Hasselbeck would fine with me as they are nothing more than bridge QB’s…what Chad Pennington was supposed to be sans for all his injuries.

    Still, of the two, I would be fine with Bulger but I doubt he comes here.

    • http://www.PhinNation.com Bill

      Brian, I agree with you…we’re all tired of retreads. Armando (no idea where gets some of his info from) said today that he thinks Orton could possibly be had for a conditional 4th/5th rounder. If that’s the case, the Phins would have to explore the possibility. I realize he’s been traded twice, but look at each situation (Cutler comes into Chi and Tebow, aka the savior, comes to Den). His TD to INT ratio is far superior to Henne’s. I just think, for the right price, the Dolphins should look into adding him to upgrade.
      If they draft a QB next year, they could have Orton to start and let the young QB backup and learn the system the right way. Would you trust Henne for this year and next? Because drafting a QB means in 2012 (most likely) another year of no playoffs.

      • Ken

        One thing that needs to be considered when comparing Henne to Orton, or any of these QBs, is the fact that none of them played in Miami Dolphins offense. None of them had Henning calling their plays. None of the other QBs played in an offense so vanilla and predictable, that the opposing “D” knew the play call before the snap. Yes, Henne has been below average, but most QBs would be below average in that system, with that coach. Let’s see what the kid can do with a real offense. If he sucks this year, he will be gone!

  • http://procerus.ca/ Steve Hoffart

    I always thought Palmer was a gamer and got progressively beaten down by the antics of the Ochocinco show, or it is Jonson again? At 31 he could rejuvenate his career and lead this team for 4 or 5 more seasons, which would offer plenty of time to bring in a QB through the draft and allow him to develop. Henne isn’t a bad QB, but he didn’t win in college and he’s not winning in the NFL.

    What value would Crowder have if packaged with day three picks? That might pry Palmer away from Brown without sacrificing an early pick.

    Too bad SF looks to be sticking with Alex Smith for the time being, I thought he would be an interesting guy to plug into a new environment.

  • caribbeanfin

    I just hope that they aggressively go for Vince Young. They can invest in him a couple of years (10 Mil) and draft a first round QB next year, let him grow for a year. If VY is not the answer, let him go.

  • James

    I like Orton the most as well mainly because hes seen both ends of the NFL offensive spectrum.

    Hes played under center in a run heavy Chicago Bears offense where he threw mainly to the TE’s and RB’s and he also played for a pass happy offense in Denver where he threw primarily from the shotgun to wideouts .

    I think he understands the balance needed and at 28 has already taken his lumps and he would be able to step in immediately .

    Once you consider that the Broncos had the worst defense and one of the worst running games the guy never complained and has improved every year. I would have to look very hard into acquiring him .

  • Ian

    I really believe the Phins will go for the “less-than-obvious” choices. Why do I think that? Because the Phins came out and said they weren’t desperate for a QB. They definitely need at least one QB to fill a roster spot because Brandstater won’t make it past the practice squad and they only have Thigpen and Henne. People are forgetting about Thigpen, but I still believe he’s in contention. The one game he played against the Bears that everybody remembers, he had short prep time and a very battered O-line. Plus Marshall was injured during the game.

    If I were the Phins, I would go with either Leinart or Bulger. It may seem insane, but hear me out. Bulger was terrific when the Rams were the team to beat in the NFL. He had some significant injuries and the Rams got considerably worse as time went on. Bulger is a very accurate passer, he’s injury free in great shape, he learned from Warner – so he’d be a great mentor and very much capable of starting if needed. Plus he will be cheaper than the obvious choices.

    I’m one of the few believers in Leinart and felt badly for him. He had that whole “duel QB” thing in Arizona that never worked. Then eventually played backup to Warner who was one of the best QB’s in the last 10-15 years. He learned a lot from Warner and looked primed to be the Cards starter in last years pre-season, but because of a personality conflict with Whisenhunt, he was cut. It had nothing to do with his skills. Does anybody remember the game he played against the Titans in the season finale two years ago? He filled in for Warner on short notice and completely tore up the Titans defence with very little prep time. He may not necessarily be “the” starter, but deserves to compete for a starting spot. Having a three leg race with Leinart, Thigpen and Henne seems promising. All are young QB’s with upsides.

    It would be crazy to me if Henne weren’t the starter this year. Especially given he has a new O-coordinator and a few new weapons. But he definitely needs to be pushed by the two guys that will be waiting close behind him.

    • stevehoffart

      I never even thought of Leinart, is he under contract? I’d take him in a second. Forget the attitude, can’t be worse that Young. Great comment and great idea!!!

      • Ian

        Thanks! Leinart signed a one year contract with Houston last year, so he’ll be a free agent. Having to sit out an entire year, he’ll be a lot more humble now with a real chip on his shoulder. I think he’d worth the cheaper investment.

  • josylyn

    Brian,
    I’m for real,you just can’t handle fans when you don’t agree with them. Without drafting a QB and without picking up one for free agent then what do we have? Since Penny this team has regressed while added skills to other positions other than QB. It starts at QB and ends at QB. Your pathetic opinion that we should give Hennepuck another chance is lame.

    • Patrik Nohe

      And when an NFL team hires you for your tremendous insight we’ll all respect your “pathetic opinion.”

  • Brian Miller

    Jocylyn: Not at all, but make a point with your comments not a sarcastic rebuttle that has not substance. I answer those regardless of whether I’m agree with or not. It’s the point of any article to have two sides to it.

    As for Henne, it’s not a matter of giving him another chance…there is little option and depending on when and if the lockout is lifted he is all we have. After that, I don’t see the value in this years QB bunch. We will overpay fiscally and likely overpay in compensation to bring in a QB who will need to be replaced in another 2 years. Despite the need for a QB, you don’t just run out and sign whatever you can get your hands on for the sake of saying that you tried. Sometimes you have to bite it and live with what you have for another season. None of those QB’s are franchise QB’s or long term solutions…so why pay draft picks for them?

  • josylyn

    NO option? ARE you kidding me? What are you smoking, crack? Your argument to sink into the cellar with Henne is ludicruous and without merit or substance.

  • josylyn

    Pat,
    You’re pushing ORton are you stupid or what? Marshall didn’t get along with Orton that weenie arm. What’s next? Getting Jose MacDaniels for Head Coach. Go back to Denver, you belong there you moron.

    • Patrik Nohe

      This coming from the brilliant football mind who really rates Cleo Lemon over Chad Henne. Keep going man, you are cracking me up. You can’t be real, no one is this silly.

  • josylyn

    Boycott the team until they get a franchise QB. Otherwise your getting ripped off and supporting websites like this with ridiculous writers who keep supporting Hennebust. Posters like Pat are really non-Phin fans who are laughing their ass off at our pathetic excuse for a team.

    • Patrik Nohe

      And thanks for your traffic by the way, you’ve been here a lot the last two days.

  • josylyn

    Pat,
    Oh you tough guy! Your picture makes it clear you’re just a Mangina.

    • Patrik Nohe

      Tough guy? You’re the one swearing at everyone on an internet forum. If there’s a keyboard hero around here it’s you. Also let’s stick to talking football, I don’t really care what you think of my picture, I’m here to talk football.

  • josylyn

    Because of all you mangina fans the Dolphin organization knows it can field a crap team and ya all will swallow it. What’s new this year. Same ole crappy coach, same ole crappy QB. That isn’t going to cut it tough guy. I say we finish last in the AFC east and more and more fans will support other teams. Even websites like this accept mediocrity and have no winner’s attitude. Starts with the fans.

    • nickzi

      Well, if a crappy team rids us of a crappy excuse for a fan like you, Josylyn, that’s one definite plus for the year.

  • josylyn

    Pat, pull out your dictionary and find one swear word I’ve spoken. Your quite the spin doctor.

    • Patrik Nohe

      Excuse me, you don’t swear you just call everyone women, morons and any other non-censored pejorative you can think of. And it’s ironic to be called a spin doctor by someone who is basically blaming the entire plight of the Dolphins on PhinPhanatic. Seriously dude, keep going. You are literally making me laugh out loud. And again, thanks for all the page visits.

  • josylyn

    Wow the spin just keeps going Patty? Where and when did I blame the crappy play of the fins on Phinfantics? I’m saying this writer is part of the problem because he’s not part of the solution. Like you. You accept mediocrity year in and year out. Not drafting a QB is insane. Not attempting to get an upgrade through free agency is even crazier. What logic is in this article. Enlighten us you moron.

  • josylyn

    What kinda org drafts a center in the first round? A loser org that’s who. Let’s see Matty Ice or Jake “I’ve got a sore arm” Long. Whose led us to the playoffs since then? Nobody!

    • daytonadolfan

      In your opinion, Who would you have drafted? Who would you pick up in free agency?

  • stevehoffart

    This is awesome! Josylyn is a girl’s name. Mangina should be a swear word.

    Pat and Brian, you shouldn’t have to defend yourselves. If some of us readers can’t understand the purpose of this site, their ignorance shouldn’t be entertained. I was enjoying the discussion about which QB we want, if we want one. This squabbling has ruined it for me.

    Josylyn, if someone had the gall to speak to me like you have in person, then you’d hope Brian was nearby! We’re just talking sports sweetheart.

  • josylyn

    stevejackoff: what? boy you really put me in my placed!LMAO!

  • Patrik Nohe

    Steve I really don’t worry about it. This guy who wants to call everyone who writes for the site a moron has no idea that every time he comes back here and spends five minutes carefully crafting his intelligent opinions he is helping and supporting our site. Honestly, I don’t think anyone has been a bigger supporter of us today than this guy, who has posted… 10 times on our site already today and it’s not even 4 o’clock. Like I’ve said, thank you for the traffic!

  • stevehoffart

    ;)

  • Brian Miller

    Wow…thats all i can say…except of course thanks for the traffic as Patrik noted…lol. So this is what jet fans do when there is no football…lol

  • josylyn

    If you want great commentary and intelligent posters go to: Phins.com!

  • josylyn

    Patty, I just noted that you’re part of this website? Man, more stupid people here than I thought!

    • daytonadolfan

      And yet you choose to ignore a question that could actually add to the discussion.

  • Patrik Nohe

    And yet you just keep on coming here. At this point you’re going to be our reader of the month.

  • josylyn

    I’m the ONLY reader of the month.

  • Michael Rosenbloom

    This is impressive. Would’ve been more impressive if the large majority of the 46 comments weren’t from some lunatic, but hey we take em how we can get em I suppose.

    On an actual football note, I love Orton. Did you look at Matt Flynn at all Brian? I haven’t done a lot of research about him, but the few things I have seen have mostly been positive.