The signing of Brent Grimes opens the doors for other players to sign with the troubled Miami Dolphins’ franchise, after he penned a four-year contract on Monday whuch is worth $32 million. The Pro Bowl cornerback played on a one-year contract with the Dolphins in 2013 which was a very successful season, highlighted by his four interceptions and his impactful presence in all 16 games.
Brent Grimes began his career with the Atlanta Falcons after he was signed to a professional contract in 2007. He became a solid cornerback in his early career with the Falcons, but he was sidelined in 2012 with a torn Achilles. In his first season with the Dolphins in 2013, Grimes made the Pro Bowl as a cornerback on the AFC squad. Throughout the season he went up against his opponents’ best receivers, and he led the Dolphins in total interceptions.
In speaking about his new extension, Grimes explained that he was yearning “to be back” with the Miami Dolphins organization. He was very “happy” about his contract extension, and he believes that the Dolphins can be very successful just by making “more game-changing plays.” The Dolphins’ new GM, Dennis Hickey, was “thrilled” with the signing of Grimes, and he views the cornerback as “a valuable piece of [their] organization.”
The signing of the talented cornerback, Brent Grimes, comes at a troubled time for the Dolphins’ organization, but it opens the doors for other potential players to follow his lead. A media frenzy has focused on the excessive bullying and harassment of Jonathan Martin by his fellow teammate, Richie Incognito. News of how Martin was relentlessly tormented by Incognito spread quickly around the nation, and the lewd behavior in the Miami locker room was directly questioned.
The bullying scandal has severely damaged the image of the Miami Dolphins’ organization to the public. This created a large question looming about if the Dolphins can attract top free agents, despite their notoriously bad locker room behavior in the past.
Will the bullying case affect player’s decision in signing with the Dolphins? Yes and no. The scandal could somewhat hurt the chances of Miami attracting some free agents because of the attention to the outrageous behavior involved in the Incognito case. But there will be some players who find the Miami area attractive, some who will focus primarily on the money involved, or some who are not phased at all by the bullying scandal. Needless to say, there will be some free agents who will consider signing with the Dolphins despite last season’s events.
A large amount of attention will be focused on the Dolphins’ locker room in the upcoming season, and there is a minuscule chance that the organization will let something like this happen again. Potential signees of Miami should not be concerned by any locker room turmoil in the upcoming season because the organization cannot afford to let anything happen at all.
Signing Michael Sam in the upcoming NFL Draft is one scenario that could help restore the Miami Dolphins’ image and improve their talent. Sam, who is an All-American defensive end from the University of Missouri, came out to the public as a gay man on February 10. If drafted, Sam would be the first openly gay man to ever play in the National Football League. Michael Sam is projected to be drafted within the middle rounds of the April draft, and he could help improve a team’s defensive line with his impressive pass rush skills. The drafting of Sam could be beneficial in drawing positive publicity towards an organization that desperately needs some.
The signing of Brent Grimes by the Dolphins could turn out to be a positive step in the right direction for the troubled organization, which could open doors to signing players in free agency or re-signing players currently on the roster. Miami can use the signing as a starting point to begin restoring the franchise’s image and talent . The fact that Grimes signed with the Dolphins is a representation that the franchise is still competitive and not completely unattractive to players.
By Glen Parris