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  • Dolphins Sign Zgonina

    The Miami Dolphins signed 10-year veteran defensive tackle Jeff Zgonina on Monday in a move that provides the club a solid rotational player.

    A starter the past three seasons in St. Louis, where he has played since 1997, the unrestricted free agent Zgonina signed a four-year contract. Financial details were not immediately available, but confirmed the signing bonus was $500,000.

    Miami outbid the Kansas City Chiefs for Zgonina, who could have remained with the Rams and who also had interest from the New England Patriots. The addition of Zgonina gives the Dolphins a proven veteran to spell starting tackles Tim Bowens and Larry Chester.

    The fate of former No. 3 tackle Jermained Haley, a restricted free agent, is not yet clear. The team could rescind its $605,000 qualifying offer to Haley or attempt to trade the three-year veteran.

    Zgonina, 32, is a tough-minded run stopper who has flashed some pass rush ability in recent seasons. The self-made, blue-collar player had never started a game before 2000, but logged 40 starts in his three years with the Rams and was named a team captain.

    In a thinning free agent pool Zgonina clearly was one of the best defensive players remaining and he seemed to click with team officials in Miami when he visited the past two days.

    The former Purdue star played with Pittsburgh (1993-94), Carolina (1995) and Atlanta (1996) before signing with St. Louis in 1997. He has recorded 206 tackles, 13 sacks and three forced fumbles in 107 appearances. Last season, starting in all 16 games, he had 38 tackles and four sacks.
    Clannie Nominee for ClanRam's Thickest Poster

  • #2
    Re: Dolphins Sign Zgonina

    Yodude, I hope Av appreciates your efforts. I'm sure the Zgonina discussions will be as spirited and lively as the Hodgins and Miller threads!


    • #3
      Re: Dolphins Sign Zgonina

      Its a good thing that Yodude doesn't allow himself to be baited by my comments! :redface:


      • #4
        Re: Dolphins Sign Zgonina

        I can't wait for the responses to start pouring in. :king:
        Clannie Nominee for ClanRam's Thickest Poster


        • #5
          Re: Dolphins Sign Zgonina

          Its a good thing that Yodude doesn't allow himself to be baited by my comments!

          Just trying to make you happy!
          Clannie Nominee for ClanRam's Thickest Poster


          • #6
            Re: Dolphins Sign Zgonina

            Losing Zgonina? This just happened Monday? Where was the petition to keep him? Does it matter as long as we have Wistrom? You don't want to put someone like Young at DT where he might get a stupid penalty called on him keeping a Division title contender in the game instead of Zgonina do you?


            • #7
              Re: Dolphins Sign Zgonina

              That's the only news that could be found about Zgonina? Yikes!


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                Troubled teams often make reckless moves and, with the Miami Dolphins desperate to fill their yawning hole at tailback, general manager Rick Spielman might now be forced to consider using defensive end Adewale Ogunleye as trade bait in his effort to replace the abruptly retired Ricky Williams.

                Insider's Randy Mueller, who as GM of the Saints traded Ricky Williams to the Dolphins, isn't shocked by Ricky's decision to walk away from the game, citing a history of "off-the-wall decisions."

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                The unsigned Ogunleye, coming off a breakthrough 2003 season in which he led the AFC in sacks, is an attractive bargaining chip who was quietly courted by several teams before the draft. Spielman could conceivably approach some of those teams, notably Minnesota and Chicago, about a deal. Both the Bears and Vikings, with solid tailback depth, could offer a solution to the Dolphins' need for a proven runner.

                But in a twist nearly as mind-numbing as Williams' retirement, the agent for Ogunleye said Sunday that he now is more confident than at any time in recent months that his client will strike a deal that keeps him with the Dolphins.

                "I don't have any [contract] proposals to back it up and, from a numbers standpoint, we haven't moved much from where we were [weeks ago]," agent Drew Rosenhaus said. "But I sense more urgency from both sides to get something done. You're right, in that the Ricky Williams development improves Adewale's situation, but it doesn't necessarily mean a trade."

                Indeed, the Dolphins organization could react to Williams' retirement by deciding to fill from within or sign a veteran free agent, and simply try to compensate in part for his exit by getting better on the defensive side of the ball. But the Dolphins statistically rated No. 10 in overall defense in 2003 and, even by retaining Ogunleye, might not get significantly better than that this season.

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                64 45 19 2 15 0

                A restricted free agent, Ogunleye was granted the "high level" qualifying offer of $1.824 million by the Dolphins in February, a move that provided the team the right to match any offer he receives from another team. From the outset, however, Ogunleye has been seeking a long-term deal commensurate to those signed by other high-profile ends. When he did not sign the Miami qualifying offer by mid-April, the Dolphins, per their rights in the collective bargaining agreement, reduced their offer to $455,000.

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              • Milan
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              • bruce4life
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                After initial conversations about a potential new contract failed to materialize, Dolphins left tackle Damion McIntosh now appears likely to join a growing list of significant players not expected to return to Miami's roster next season.

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              • Nick
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                Two teams seeking to upgrade their pass rush have an interest in trading for Adewale Ogunleye if the Dolphins place the Pro Bowl defensive end on the trading block.

                An NFL source said Sunday that Washington is "definitely" curious about acquiring Ogunleye, who is threatening a lengthy holdout if the Dolphins don't sign him to a long-term contract extension. The Florida Times-Union reported last week that Jacksonville also is closely monitoring the situation.

                The Dolphins have not actively pursued trying to trade Ogunleye this offseason, but that could change if an impressive offer is made, especially in light of Ogunleye being unsigned and no contract agreement imminent.

                Chicago had shown interest in Ogunleye before April's NFL Draft, but the Bears were unwilling to part with the first- and third-round picks. The NFL deadline then passed for teams to sign Ogunleye to an offer sheet as a restricted free agent, giving the Dolphins his exclusive rights for the 2004 season.

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              • Nick
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                Roller coaster contract negotiations between the Miami Dolphins and restricted free agent defensive end Adewale Ogunleye have dipped to the point where agent Drew Rosenhaus on Friday expressed doubt another whether a deal will ever be consummated.

                "At this juncture, it's a shame to put it in these terms, but I'd have to say that we're really at an impasse," Rosenhaus said. "There's a pretty big gap. Realistically, I just don't know how, or even if, we can get it done."

                The remarks came only a few weeks after both sides expressed guarded optimism a deal could be struck, and only a week after Ogunleye used a team banquet at which he was named the Dolphins' most valuable player for 2003 to lobby Miami officials in attendance to get negotiations moving in a positive direction.

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                In early March, the Dolphins tendered Ogunleye a one-year proposal of $1.824 million, the highest qualifying offer for a restricted free agent, to retain a right of first refusal in the event another team signed the AFC sack leader for 2003 to an offer sheet. But the collective bargaining agreement permits the team to reduce that offer to 110 percent of Oguneleye's base salary of $375,000 for 2003 if he isn't signed by June 15.

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                Dropping the qualifying offer to the lower number could inject a degree of acrimony, one that has been absent to this point, into the negotiations.

                "We're still looking for a contract somewhere between the one Jevon Kearse signed as an unrestricted free agent this year and the one that 'KGB' got as a restricted guy last year," Rosenhaus said. "That's where we feel the market for 'Wale' should be."

                In a deal negotiated by Rosenhaus, Kearse two months ago left the Tennessee Titans and signed an eight-year contract for $66 million with the Philadelphia Eagles, including $16 million in upfront money. Last spring, Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila received a signing bonus of $11 million as part of a seven-year, $37.1 million contract to re-sign with the Green Bay Packers as a restricted free agent.

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                -06-13-2004, 10:58 AM