Friday, October 23, 2009

Matt Roth, London, and why neither may be in our near future.

Matt Roth was such a fan-favorite in 2008 that it's no question it's hard to accept the truth here.  And that is that we probably need to move on.  OK, ok, I moved on back in August, but I understand other views on the matter, and also, deep down inside, wish that he could get healthy, get on the team, and help us to win games.  Ok, it's not that deep down - obviously that would be a win-win situation.  But then what?  Even if Roth, who has now practiced just once in the last FOUR MONTHS, (before sitting out the past two with an ankle injury), were to come back, make it onto the team, and start contributing, there is that question to be answered.  Now what?

Being a contract season for Roth, it would be in his best interest to put up good numbers, which he's not going to do due to missing at least 6 games, and to no longer being a starter on a team with much more depth at OLB.  The truth is, he could end up making LESS on a new contract than his original contract.  If the Dolphins offer him a pay cut, wouldn't he automatically reject it and test the free agency waters?  When healthy, he's good enough to start for most of the teams in the NFL.  His only chance at making any money with the Dolphins would be if Jason Taylor retires immediately following the season.  Even then, with Cameron Wake in waiting, that scenario isn't guaranteed to keep Roth around.

In fact, it seems less and less likely that the Dolphins and Roth would have the kind of relationship in the future that was originally anticipated by both parties before 'Groin-gate' reared it's ugly head (pun not intended). 


The Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the New England Patriots will play in the now-annual London regular season matchup on Sunday, which thanks to being on the West Coast, means I can watch live NFL games from 9am to 9pm on Sunday.

Interesting note - the Pats decided to go on Thursday night, with practices at the Brit Oval (Cricket Stadium in South London) on Friday (full) and Saturday (walkthrough).  The Bucs, meanwhile, decided to spend Friday on the plane, leaving in the morning and arriving in time for curfew, in an attempt to acclimate to London time immediately.  They will then have a full practice on Saturday morning and walkthrough on Saturday afternoon.  Where will they practice?  At Wembley Stadium, of course.  So the question is, which team will be better prepared?  Sure, the Pats are a much better team, and should win in a landslide, but will the Bucs be better than anticipated due to their schedule?

The Dolphins played in London in 2007, where Ted Ginn Jr scored his first ever touchdown in a 13-10 loss to the Giants. The Dolphins were the home team in that game and left on Wednesday  and had 3 full practice days in Wembley, whereas the 'visiting' Giants left on Thursday and had only the walkthrough in the Stadium. 

The NFL announced this morning that there would never be a Super Bowl held in London unless there was an NFL franchise based there.  They also said they are looking into the logistics of having an NFL franchise in London.  Personally, I would move the Detroit Lions there.  The London Lions would be a perfect fit, and it would allow the US to officially close down Detroit and use it as a giant paintball facility.  And since the Lions play in the NFC Central, the Dolphins would likely only have to play there once in every 10 years or so.  In any event, such a move wouldn't be taken by the NFL in the next several years, as they are currently still trying everything in their power to prevent any of the current teams from moving to Los Angeles.


  1. The Knight who says Ni!October 23, 2009 at 11:15 AM

    My stance on Roth is he still has value. Maybe not great open market value or trade value which the trade deadline has already passed, but he's still a good football player when healthy.

    This depth we have at LB and especially OLB is a little sketchy especially looking towards next year. JT isn't getting any younger, Porter is right behind him and we don't know enough about Wake's overall game. Sure he's probably a good pass rusher but is that all he is? That's okay you need pass rushers. Let's say we were without JT and Porter next year. Who's playing OLB opposite Wake? Maybe Moses? We all seem to agree that Anderson is just a body and doesn't have much upside. Walden?

    How much depth do we really have at OLB looking at next year? We can't trade Roth now so the best thing that can happen is he helps us this year. If he walks in free agency I don't think we're all that deep in 2010. At least not proven depth.

  2. Tin,

    I hear you on the decision to travel, but like  I said earlier, it is being reported around here and by the Bucs, that is was the NLF who decided what team got to leave when. 

    As far as roth, i agree with what knight said.  i dont see a lot of depth at OLB.  I am not saying roth is worty of a big contract, i dont think he is all that, but i sure would to be able to keep him.

  3. Roth is a perfect example of how to screw up the last year of your contract in the NFL.  Whether one likes him or not he needed to be on the field.  I think he's done as a dolphin, and man do I hate to say that.  The defense really misses him, he brings an edge to their game or so it seems to me.  But the dolphin brass is not going to put with a guy that can't stay on or even get on the field because of injuries or what ever.

  4. The Knight who says Ni!October 23, 2009 at 11:30 AM

    Fang, if a guy is hurt what do you want him to do? It's unfortunate, he didn't screw up.

  5. Man, I was just talking to a co-worker of mine about the games this weekend and we really have to get two and a half miricles this weekend to catch up in the division (or not stay back so far) we need Oakland to beat the Jets, Tampa to beat N.E. and we need to pull a win out against one of the best teams in the league right now.  It's not looking too good.  Regardless of what lil' Mark Giglio says.  ( I will buy that kid a new bike if his prediction comes true!) LOL

  6. The Knight who says Ni!October 23, 2009 at 11:38 AM

    The trifecta traded for Jason Ferguson who missed most of the season in 2007 and he's much older than Roth.

  7. The Knight who says Ni!October 23, 2009 at 11:39 AM

    The Raiders beating the Jets isn't that important. We beat the Jets head-to-head and we play them next week. There is plenty of time to work on climbing up the division. We need to win our games.

  8. The Knight who says Ni!October 23, 2009 at 12:54 PM

    The Jets losing is always good times. LOL

  9. "We can't trade Roth now so the best thing that can happen is he helps us
    this year."
    We can't re-sign him to market value either. One option would be to sign
    him to a low-end starter OLB contract and then trade him. If JT and Porter
    both decide to play next year and Wake develops, there'd be no way we could
    pay Roth what he's worth and don't forget who his agent is, so there'll be
    no short-changing allowed.
    if Roth spends the rest of this year on injured reserve, he would not be
    able to bet on a big contract, so we could sign him at his current back-up
    money, and then we'd have Roth and Wake going ahead in 2011 as the most
    likely starters (obviously we will draft and free agent other players in the
    meantime). But if Roth comes back and plays at a relatively high level, it
    will be good for the team THIS year, but could get complicated in 2010

  10. I gave you a tampa link and the bucs official page as sources, and you still
    want to say the NFL dictates who travels when? The Bucs were allowed to go
    earlier, but without actually looking I'd bet the stadium was being used for
    something during the week.

  11. Rockphin, the Jets and Pats games don't count because they have played an
    extra game. The only one that matters right now is that we win vs the
    Saints. Then we'll be 3-3, and the Jets will likely be 4-3. Then we play
    the Jets and a win will make us 4-3 and them 4-4, making us in 2nd place.
    That week the Pats have their BYE, so they will either be 5-2 or 4-3. Let's
    assume they're 5-2 and we're 4-3. Then in week 8 we play the Pats. A win
    would make us tied at 5-3. Then we play Tampa Bay, Carolina, and Buffalo.
    We could be 8-3 at that point. Then we face the Pats again. Playing such
    powerhouses as Jacksonville, Tennessee and Houston after that, followed by
    the season closer hosting Pittsburgh (thank god we don't have to play them
    in Heinz field).
    Even if we lose twice to the pats and once to new orleans, we could still
    end up 11-5. But we have played one less game, so we can't analyze what we
    need to do to leapfrog division rivals just yet. After week 9 when the Jets
    have their BYE, we'll be able to see clearer.

  12. The Knight who says Ni!October 23, 2009 at 1:25 PM

    Roth could still play in 10 or 11 games and maybe the playoffs and get his value back up. His value doesn't have to be based on 16 game totals, it can be based on how well he plays in the games he plays in. So he could help us this year while raising his market value. If he plays as well as he did last year or shows he's getting better at the OLB position than I think we should be interested in re-signing him.

  13. Knight, it's not a question of whether he is worth re-signing, it's whether
    or not we'd make the offer he's looking for. He's not going to get 6 or 7
    mil a year from us.

  14. The Knight who says Ni!October 23, 2009 at 1:35 PM

    Tin, the schedule is really looking brutal isn't it? LOL

    We all know on any given Sunday any team can beat any team, but our ominous schedule is not quite what it was projected to be in August as it is right now on October 23rd.

  15. Very good points Tin, however, they don't stop my Jets loving Father-in-law from cramming it down my throat that we are still "at the bottom" of the AFC East even after beating them.  Call me selfish, but I want to pass them NOW. LOL

  16. And it would just be the greatest if Tampa can upset the "hoodie"

  17. The Knight who says Ni!October 23, 2009 at 1:42 PM

    Tin, I doubt he'll get that from any team. He's a good run defender with a non-stop motor and he brings toughness to your team, but he's not an elite talent or a big time playmaker. I could see him getting a Randy Starks type contract though. What was that 5 years $20M or something like that?

  18. The Knight who says Ni!October 23, 2009 at 1:45 PM

    Rockphin, I hear ya but we have to take of our games and not worry about what other teams are doing just yet. We still have 11 games left. If the Raiders beat the Jets and we lose to the Saints nothing changes.

  19. Actually the Bills are at the bottom, and we have a 1-0 division record. :)

  20. Yeah but Starks' contract (5 yrs, $20.05 mill with $7M guaranteed) was two
    seasons ago and he wasn't a starter. There is a team out there that will
    offer a healthy, productive Roth a 5 year, $30M deal assuming he gets back
    on the field and is 100%.

  21. Make that 2-0 division record.

  22. doh! 2-0! my bad.

  23. I'm no math wiz... based on last year's records our strength of schedule started at .594. After 6 games, our remaining strength of schedule is .448! That moves our projected strength of schedule from #1 in the NFL to 25th overall! So to all you who say that our schedule has softened considerably are right on the money!

  24. The Knight who says Ni!October 23, 2009 at 7:04 PM

    That's the key to us hanging in there in the AFC East and AFC. 2-0 division and 2-2 AFC record. This Sunday against the Saints is another NFC game. It's a bonus game. It doesn't hurt AFC status with tiebreakers. We were 2-4 last year and went on a 9-1 streak. We're starring at the same scenario this year but with a young QB who offers more pop in the passing game. Let's see how this team develops.