OCHOCINCO WANTS TO JOIN DOLPHINS
WILL WORK OUT FOR THEM
The Dolphins' wide receiver position might be on the verge of adding one of the NFL's most recognizable names as Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports is reporting the team will workout former Bengals and Patriots wide receiver Chad Ochocinco this upcoming week. La Canfora also reports that Ochocinco is making it known that Miami is his preferred destination and was "praying" for a chance to work out and talk to them.
While his name might be a household name, he is certainly not the player he used to be. He had 1,047 yards receiving in 2009 and 831 yards in 2010 with Carson Palmer throwing him passes in Cincinnati, however following a trade to New England in 2011 his numbers took a sharp drop to 15 receptions for 276 yards and just one touchdown. Quarterback Tom Brady never seemed to feel comfortable targeting him and there are rumors Ochocinco failed to completely grasp the offensive playbook.
At 34 years of age, there are questions whether or not Ochocinco has anything left in the tank and if he could offer a team much as a wide receiver. As La Canfora points out, wherever Ochocinco lands, it is likely to be his last stop in the NFL and he will be greatly motivated to prove that last year was a fluke and not end his career on such a down note.
Miami is thin at wide receiver and have many young players that are being expected by the coaching staff to make major jumps this upcoming season. While Ochocinco might be a shell of his former self adding him to the roster could benefit the other receivers and perhaps get the best effort out of everyone.
Some people might ask why would they trade a very talented diva in Brandon Marshall just to turn around and sign a less talented aging diva in Chad Ochocinco? Or why not sign free agent Plaxico Burress? On the surface that is a fair question, however while Ochocinco is a strong personality, he does not get into off the field incidents, doesn't drink at all and doesn't mentally destroy his quarterback and the rest of the team. Marshall splits locker rooms, takes down quarterbacks mentally and gets in numerous off the field incidents. Two incidents which were attempts to murder him. Burress shot himself and spent time in prison. Ochocinco is more of a Channing Crowder type individual that talks a lot and speaks his mind, but he is definitely not on the same level as Marshall and Burress.
Signing Ochocinco to what would likely be the veteran minimum of $925,000 makes sense for the Dolphins. The NFL expanded the training camp roster this offseason from 80 players to 90 players, so there are already going to be 10 extra players in camp than in previous years. If he proves that he is not an upgrade over any of the current players, they can simply release him and go with the guys they already have. If he proves that he is one of the top 5 or 6 receivers on the team, what is the problem in keeping him? Rookies like B.J. Cunningham, Rishard Matthews, Jeff Fuller and Derek Moye could easily be placed on the team's practice squad this season. Also, if veteran Roberto Wallace and Marlon Moore can't beat out Ochocinco, they probably are never going to produce for this team at this point.
This is a story we will be keeping an eye on this upcoming week and perhaps during the summer. Just because Ochocinco is working out this week doesn't mean a contract offer is imminent or even coming at all. Can't hurt to kick his tires and see what he has left.
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