Tuesday, March 24, 2009

It's (Almost) Henne Time in Miami

The Miami Herald's Armando Salguero is telling it like it is, even if some fans don't want to think about. Chad Henne is the Dolphins QB of the future. He will start in 2010. But what about 2009?

Head coach Tony Sparano has already gone on record saying 2008 Comeback Player of the Year Chad Pennington is the teams QB to start the 2009 season. No questions asked. However Sparano leaves himself enough room to mix things up. Pennington signed a 2-year deal prior to the 2008 season. He'll be a free agent in less than a year. Do the Dolphins really want to extend someone who may not be the starter come 2010? Because, according to sources, he won't be sitting atop the Miami depth chart a year from now.

Expect to see this a lot this summer... and every Sunday in the coming years.

In his article, Salguero credits a source for many conclusions such as Henne seeing extensive time during training camp and the preseason. Henne - despite playing in only three games and throwing just 12 passes - has impressed the entire front office, including those that are most important (Bill Parcells, Jeff Ireland, and Sparano).

But what happens to Pennignton? After finishing second in the MVP race, is it necessary to toss him aside with out witnessing his 2009 season? It all depends on what the team and he wants. According to Salguero, Miami will make it known that Henne is their starter in 2010 and Pennington is more than welcome to return to the Dolphins with a reasonable salary - and to be his backup. Why?
Henne has better arm strength, and that could improve Miami's passing attack. The Dolphins also do not dismiss the effect Henne might have on the development of a receiver such as Ted Ginn Jr.
Though I stated multiple times that Henne would be Miami's starter in 2008, it was before the acquisition of Pennington. I still stand by my guarantee; there were just extenuating circumstances that kept it from coming to fruition. Henne has the talent. I have seen it first hand. The Dolphins know it. You'll see it - just not for another season.

UPDATE, 1:30 PM - I bumped this article back to the top because Pro Football Talk is now reporting on this story as well as another one Salguero published today, which includes more quote from Sparano on Henne's preparation for the future. I'm trying to link to Salguero's new piece but his blog is not cooperating at the moment.

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