The Miami Dolphins went out on a limb when they decided to accept the HBO Hard Knocks program into their training camp. They climbed further out on that limb when they signed Chad Ochocinco to a one year incentive laden deal.
The question is can it pay off?
Former Raider HC Hugh Jackson who coached Ocho with the Bengals said that to get the most out of him, you have to let him be himself. Which will be a problem for these new Miami Dolphins coaches. A franchise that is still suffering from an identity crisis and bad press will not only appear nationally on HBO this August, but now will have one of the most outward personalities in the NFL.
Ocho said that last year he had a hard time grasping the NE playbook, it’s unknown why or if he will have similar issue in Miami. It was also reported that he never felt fully comfortable in his own skin. Instead watching where he stepped or what he said. In other words, he wasn’t being Ocho.
It appears, he is starting to come out of that shell a bit. Yesterdy, Ochocinco “Tweeted” a message to NFL Commissoner Roger Goodell. After calling him “dad” again, Ocho made it known that he intends to be fined quite often this season. Profootballtalk.com speculates that his reference is to TD dances. Let’s hope that is the case.
The Miami Dolphins may not be a winning franchise these days but they have never been nothing short of class. Brandon Marshall along with former LB Joey Porter were the most outspoken or at the very least the more colorful players the Dolphins have had in over a decade. While some might argue that Ricky Williams would fit into that structure his distractions were more the result of his own abuses.
New HC Joe Philbin will find his first season in Miami a little more chaotic than most new NFL head coaches. With the attention being given to the team and now the emerging vocal chords of Ochocinco this team may just become must see TV. Of course that is not necessarily a good thing.
For me, the handling of Ochocinco by Joe Philbin will be the “it” thing to watch. Players love the new HC but as we know that doesn’t mean your team will be successful. Tom Coughlin is not a well liked guy in New York but has won two Super Bowls. Joe Philbin will set the tone of this team not only for this season but every season he is here calling the shots, with what he does in the coming months.
I am on board with the signing of Ochocinco and love the fact that he is a local guy who finally gets his chance to play for his favorite NFL team. Still, his mouth may keep him from making that dream a regular season reality. His “Tweeting” habits very well may get him in hot water at some point, and I have to imagine the coaches and GM Jeff Ireland will eventually ask him to tone it down. Of course if they don’t, the Chad simply toned himself down.
I suppose we are in for more of the “F_U” tweets to guys like Mike&Mike In The Morning.
Stay tuned folks, the safety bars are not yet down on this rollercoaster.